The appendix can be found in the lower right side of your abdomen, it is a small tube that is attached to your large intestine. Conditions, such as acute appendicitis, can require an appendectomy procedure, in order to remove the appendix before it ruptures and causes an infection that can be life threatening.
Appendicitis can happen to almost anyone, and it is important to carry out emergency surgery if you believe to have it, otherwise more serious implications may occur.
What Is Appendectomy Procedure?
Known as an appendectomy, the surgery removes an appendix and is usually done when someone has appendicitis. An appendectomy can be performedof two ways—laparoscopic appendectomy and open appendectomy.
The laparoscopic method involves using three or more tiny cameras at the end of long tubes, which are inserted through several small incisions. The surgeon can see the inside of the abdomen on a TV monitor, and the appendix is removed through one of the small incisions.A laparoscopic appendectomy procedure will often result in less hospital time, and a quicker recovery from the surgery.
The open method involves one incision being made in the lower-right hand side of the abdomen, through which the surgeon locates and removes the appendix.
It is possible for a surgeon to decide that an open appendectomy is required whilst performing a laparoscopic appendectomy procedure.
Below is a video showing how an appendectomy procedure is performed:
Are There Any Risks of Having an Appendectomy Procedure
If you are going to have an appendectomy procedure, then speak with your doctor if you have any issues or concerns.
All surgery comes with some risk attached to it, and an appendectomy is no exception. Some complications can arise from the procedure, such as wound infection or bowl obstruction. If the appendix was to rupture during surgery, it is possible for inflammation of the abdomen to occur.
What to Do Before and After the Appendectomy Procedure
Before the Procedure
Your doctor will advise you of the best course of action to take before you have appendectomy procedure. This can include blood and urine tests, a physical exam, or imaging studies of the abdomen (X-ray, ultrasound, CT scan). This is done to check for inflammation of the appendix. Antibiotics and IV fluids will be given to you straight away, and surgery will take place as soon as possible.
Once you are prepped for surgery, you will be provided with general anesthesia, which will render you into a deep sleep, with a tube used for breathing.
After the Procedure
Straight after surgery, patients will gain sustenance from a liquid based meal. If this is easily tolerated, then a normal diet can be resumed with the next meal. Patients should only eat solid foods once the stomach and intestines begin to once again function.
On average, it takes a person a couple of days to leave the hospital after anappendectomy procedure, and they can generally go back to their normal undertakings within two to four weeks of departing the hospital. Recovery time can vary between patients, and can be greatly increased if complications arise during surgery.
If you have undergone an appendectomy procedure, there are certain steps you can take once you arrive home to help with recovery, the main one being rest. As mentioned, it can take up to four weeks to fully recoverfrom an appendectomy procedure, so once home, ensuring to rest for at least one to two weeks will help significantly in recovery. This means avoiding all strenuous activities, including exercising and heavy lifting. Your doctor will most probably inform you of the level of activities permitted, and when to increase your activity level.