Knowing the Signs of Appendicitis
The average person knows at least one person who has had the appendix removed. An appendectomy, the surgery required to remove the appendix, is a standard treatment for patients with appendicitis. Appendicitis is the name given to the medical condition known as inflammation of the appendix. But the belly pain associated with appendicitis can often be similar to a severe case of gas. However, if someone experiences any of the four signs below, a laparoscopic appendectomy may be necessary.
1. A low-grade fever
A low-grade fever is considered anything between 99.5 and 100.3 degrees Fahrenheit. Alone, a low-grade fever isn’t an automatic sign of appendicitis and could be associated with a variety of conditions. But if combined with other common symptoms, most notably belly pain, the fever can serve as an early warning sign. And especially if the fever persists or worsens, a trip to the hospital may be in order.
2. Traveling belly pain
One of the most significant telltale signs that appendicitis might be an issue is belly pain. But some people are unaware that with appendicitis, the discomfort moves. Most people report that, at the initial onset of symptoms, the belly pain was located near the navel. But as the condition worsens, the pain travels to the lower right-hand side of the abdomen and can become more intense. However, if a pregnant woman suspects appendicitis has occurred, the pain will be on the upper right side of the stomach due to organ shifting.
3. Loss of appetite
Understandably, the idea of eating food is probably the last thing someone suffering from intense belly pain would want to consider. And if a poor appetite is combined with the other common appendicitis symptoms, then appendicitis might be the cause of a person’s discomfort.
Again, many of the symptoms associated with appendicitis can also apply to a wide range of conditions. But, nausea and vomiting are additional potential signs that an individual is suffering from appendicitis. When combined with any of the above telltale signs, nausea and vomiting should alert an individual or caretaker that a trip to the hospital or a call to a doctor might be necessary.
Be proactive with appendicitis
Appendicitis isn’t preventable, but the condition can be easily treated with an appendectomy. Usually, physicians will opt for a laparoscopic appendectomy because the procedure reduces recovery times, minimizes scars, and often requires just a one- or two-night stay in the hospital. Appendicitis can progress rapidly and can carry the risk of fatal outcomes if not treated quickly. If a person notices symptoms associated with appendicitis, the best thing to do is call a doctor or go to an emergency room.