What is an appendectomy? : A Guide for Dummies.

- An appendectomy is surgery to remove the appendix when it is infected. This condition is called appendicitis.

- An appendectomy is a common emergency procedure. It can be performed laparoscopically (key hole) or Open( this is our focus)

An open appendectomy
- A cut or incision 2-4 inches long is made in the lower right hand side of your belly or abdomen.

- If your appendix has been burst and infection has spread you may need an open appendectomy

Risks of an appendectomy
- Bleeding
- Wound infection
- Infection, redness and swelling of the belly can occur if the appendix has burst during surgery
(peritonitis)
- Blocked bowels
- Injury to nearby organs

Patient steps
- Your healthcare provider will explain the surgery to you
- You will be asked to sign a consent form that gives your permission to do the surgery
- Your provider will ask questions about your past health. He or she will also give you a physical exam. This is to make sure you are in good health before surgery. You may also need blood tests and other diagnostic tests.
- You must not eat or drink anything for 8 hours before the surgery.
- Make sure your provider has a list of all medicines and all herbs, vitamins, and supplements that you are taking.
- You may be given a sedative to help you relax.

What happens during an appendectomy?
An appendectomy is done while you are given medicines to put you to sleep (under general anaesthetic)

Process:
- You will be asked to remove any jewellry or other objects that mat get in the way,
- You will be given a gown to wear.
- An IV (Intravenous) line will be put in your back.
- If there is alot of hair on the surgical site it may be shaved off.
- A tube will be put down your throat to help you breathe. The anaesthesiologist will check your heart rate, blood pressure, breathing and oxygen level during the surgery.

Open Appendectomy
- A cut or incision will be made in the lower right part of your body
- Your abdominal muscles will be seperated and the abdonimal area will be be opened.
- Your appendix will be tied off with stitches and removed.
- If your appendix has burst or ruptured, your abdomen will be washed out with salt water.
- The lining of your abdomen and your abdominal muscles will be closed with stitches. A small tube may be put in the incision to drain fluids.


Source:
http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/healthlibrary/test_procedures/gastroenterology/appendectomy_92,P07686


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