Our appendix is a 3 and 1/2 inch long tissue shaped like a tube which extends from our large intestine. Some say that this part of our body has no function whatsoever and that we can actually live a normal healthy life without it. Such a small and seemingly useless part of the body for some, that can actually become a major problem and even cause death when it gets inflamed or infected. Problems related to our appendix should not be taken lightly, in most cases it is always treated as a medical emergency that needs quick attention.
Scientists from the Duke University Medical Center in North Carolina have come up with a study that may have discovered the main function of the appendix. Their research has shown that the organ acts as a storage for good bacteria. This was based on the findings taken from a patient who has gone through a severe case of cholera. The disease removed the essential bacteria from the gut and the appendix supplied the reserve good bacteria in effect replacing the good bacteria that were removed due to cholera. This would back up the claim of other medical practitioners who say that the appendix has a role in maintaining our gut health. Some would even be religious and say that God would not give us an appendix if it had no purpose. This is really up to the individual on what he wants to believe, but the real issue is what do we do when our appendix starts giving us problems?
Now that we may have some proof of the function of our appendix, this does not mean that once it gets inflamed we should try and keep it rather than have it removed.
Just how bad is an inflamed appendix? Appendicitis is a condition where our appendix becomes inflamed to a point that it can burst and spill infectious materials into our stomach area. This is a medical emergency that needs immediate attention, surgery is the only solution to remove the affected appendix. If this condition is left untreated quickly, this can lead to death. We should note that almost all cases of appendicitis end up in surgery and removal of the appendix.
What Causes An Inflamed Appendix?
The common cause of appendicitis is when there is a blockage in the appendix which may be due to feces, infection, or a foreign object that has entered the body. There are some people who advise not to eat the seeds because these may get lodged in the appendix and may be the cause of the blockage. Chia seeds and flaxseeds in particular are singled out, but none of these have been proven yet to be the cause of an inflamed appendix.
What Are The Symptoms?
We now share with you the symptoms of appendicitis. For those who have gone through surgery for removing the appendix, they would tell you that if your appendix is the problem, you would know. The pain is just different when you compare it to a normal stomach ache. It may start in one portion of the abdomen and usually moves around. The pain is like no other and no pain reliever or any topical solution will be able to make it go away. A trip to the hospital is inevitable and this is always the best in these types of situations, especially when you are experiencing any of these symptoms we show you below. It is best to seek medical care at once to avoid any fatalities.
-Sharp pain in upper and lower abdomen, back or rectum
-Loss of appetite
-Swelling of the abdomen
-Pain when you urinate
-Vomiting plus abdominal pain
-Severe stomach cramps
-Constipation or Loose Bowel Movement with Gas
How To Treat Appendicitis?
Surgery is the only way to treat appendicitis. An appendectomy is performed which is the standard procedure for almost all cases of appendicitis.
As a common practice, if appendicitis is diagnosed or suspected, surgery is quickly performed to avoid a rupture of the appendix.
There are some new research coming out that shows antibiotics can treat acute appendicitis and may in some cases eliminate the need for an appendectomy.