Symptoms and Diagnosis of Appendicitis in Children

Children are often prone to various disorders that affect the normal functioning of their vital systems. Appendicitis is one such issue that occurs commonly among both children and adults. It is considered a medical emergency and quick medical help must be sought at low income clinics or health centers nearby to prevent it from getting complicated.

Appendicitis is actually the inflammation or swelling of the appendix, which is a tube of tissue located at the tip of the large intestine. It usually occurs when the there is a blockage in the appendix due to stool, mucus, foreign particles, or any cancerous cells. This causes the appendix to become inflamed and that can further aggravate the condition, as the blood supply is also cut off.

As the inflammation progresses, the appendix can burst or perforate on its walls that results in infections that spread into the abdominal cavity. This causes peritonitis a fatal infection of the abdominal cavity that can prove fatal if proper treatment is not undertaken.

Symptoms

Among children, the symptoms of appendicitis are generally a severe stomachache, usually located in the lower right abdominal area. Parents can presume that the stomachache is due to appendicitis and not any other causes if the pain is concentrated in the lower abdomen or if it increases with movement, coughing, sneezing, etc.

Besides that, children will experience a range of symptoms such as nausea, loss of appetite, abdominal swelling, constipation, vomiting, and fever. An increase in the white blood cell count during the periods of stomachache also signals appendicitis in the child.

Diagnosis and Treatment

Diagnosing appendicitis in children involves a series of medical tests to evaluate the problem. This includes an abdominal examination to identify if there is any sign of infection in the abdominal cavity. CT scans are also performed in order to obtain detailed images of the abdominal cavity and thus detect if the appendix is prone to any swelling. Low income clinics may also undertake a blood and urine test to determine any signs of bodily infection.

Appendectomy is the preferred method for treating appendicitis and involves the surgical removal of the appendix. This is done via open or laparoscopic method under anesthesia, where the surgeons use specific instruments to remove the inflamed appendix. A strict course of antibiotics is also followed before and after the surgery for fully removing the infections from the body.