How to recognize appendicitis and what to do in this situation?
It is believed that surgery to remove appendicitis is one of the fastest and safest, a lethal outcome is possible in only 0.2% of cases, and then, the criticality of the situation can arise only in the event of late detection of the disease and, as a consequence, the occurrence of more serious complications.
Therefore, it is not difficult to guess that the sooner the correct diagnosis is identified and diagnosed, the better for the patient. But here another problem arises: it is very difficult to distinguish between pains characteristic of inflammation of appendicitis from, say, ordinary flatulence or indigestion.
Calling an ambulance crew on the first alarm bell is not always the best option, especially if stomach pain is a problem that you often have to face.
What is acute appendicitis?
By the way, if stomach pains are your faithful companions, then it may be time to turn to a gastroenterologist and find out the real cause of their occurrence.But still, how quickly to recognize appendicitis, because the case is urgent and urgent.
For a long time it was believed that the appendix is a blind and thin process located at the end of the cecum, and a kind of natural error, a body that does not carry any meaning. Therefore, it was removed at any convenient opportunity, because in a calm state the sense of it is not enough, but in case of its inflammation, the consequences can be the most serious.
Over time, we found out that there are lymphoid cells in the appendix, exact ones like that of a person in the tonsils, as a result of which experts came to the conclusion that this blind process is part of the immune system.
Most doctors to this day are convinced that the benefits of the blind appendage are minimal, but the harm from its possible inflammation is substantial. Today, the only correct treatment for an inflamed appendix is an emergency operation, even a gentle laparoscopic method has appeared, thanks to which the inflamed process is removed without large incisions.
Unfortunately, the equipment for such operations does not exist in all clinics, so this method is not as widespread as we would like.
If the first symptoms of acute appendicitis occur, do not hesitate and seek medical attention immediately: call an ambulance or, if possible, get to the hospital on your own.
For most people, the appendix is located on the right side: between the iliac bone and the navel. Hence the pain: usually occur near the navel, but it does not last long and flow closer to the lower right part of the abdomen.
The appendix can be placed in a non-standard way: to be lowered into the lower part of the pelvis, as a result of which the symptoms of appendicitis can be confused with inflammation of the appendages in women, or inflammation of the bladder in men. Sometimes the blind appendix is slightly elevated, with the result that the pain can be localized in the right upper hypochondrium.
Typically, pain with this diagnosis occurs abruptly, have paroxysmal or blurred nature. One of the ways to understand whether it is appendicitis: try to cough or laugh, usually the pain increases, it does not give a deep breath or straighten up to its full height.
The next signal is a constant desire to take a forced posture - on the side, and to press your legs under you.The disease can be observed nausea and vomiting (usually one-time), after which there is no relief, as, for example, in case of poisoning.
By the way, it should be remembered that, in case of appendicitis, a child may have vomiting much more often, but in people aged it may not be at all.
As a rule, the body temperature rises, in adults it can vary between 37.5-38 °, and in children it can rise to 40 °. Significant temperature increases in adults (over 38 ° C) may indicate the development of complications and the progression of the inflammatory process.
Another obvious sign of the disease is severe dry mouth in the background of abdominal pain, which is accompanied by a yellow or white patina on the tongue. Stool inflammation of the appendix often does not change, however, people with its atypical location may experience constipation, less often diarrhea.
How to recognize?
- Remember that in case of suspected appendicitis it is impossible to carry out an independent palpation of the abdominal cavity, since there is a chance to break the appendix, which leads to serious complications - peritonitis. Instead, try gently tapping with the pad of your index finger in the area of the right and, for comparison, of the left iliac bone.With an inflamed appendix, such manipulations on the right side always bring painful sensations, but on the left side - not.
- Try to slightly press down the side where it hurts the most: hold your hand here for about 5-10 seconds, you will feel a slight easing of pain, and then abruptly remove your hand. If at this moment you feel severe pain, then it can also be a sign of appendicitis.
- Try to stand up and straighten up, if it does not work out, then lie down on the right side in the fetal position, pull your legs towards you. If appendicitis is the case, then the pain will become weaker, but if you turn on your left side and then straighten your legs back, it will increase again.
What should I do after I was practically convinced of the presence of appendicitis? Immediately call an ambulance and wait for the doctor. In this case, to give the patient first aid will not work: during this period, you should not take painkillers, as they can smear the picture of the disease and prevent specialists from making the correct diagnosis.
The only way you can alleviate the suffering of the patient is to attach a damp towel to the sore spot. It is strictly forbidden to apply heating pads, as they can provoke an appendix rupture.
After the arrival of the physicians, the patient should feel the abdominal cavity in order to exclude peritonitis, which is characterized by strongly cramped abdominal muscles. Directly in the hospital, the patient usually undergoes a blood and urine test, and an abdominal ultrasound can be prescribed for an accurate diagnosis.
All those who prefer to endure once again and hope that the problem will "resolve" itself should be aware that the patient will experience severe pains until the nerve endings of the process die. After this, the pain subsides, but this does not mean that the problem is solved, it means that acute appendicitis has developed into peritonitis - a more dangerous and complex disease, which in some cases can even end in death. Be attentive to your body!
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