Perhaps this tragic but true story of death from ruptured appendicitis may help.
Asawana John an investment banker in one of the new generation banks in Nigeria has been seeing a doctor for a persistent abdominal pain for several weeks. She was misdiagnosed for pelvic inflammatory disease and continuously placed on antibiotics. One fateful night, she was jolted up from sleep by a severe, generalized abdominal pain with fever and fainting spells. Asawana was rushed to the nearby hospital where she was examined in the emergency department by a doctor on call. She was diagnosed of ruptured appendix from prolonged and untreated appendicitis leading to spreading peritonitis and sepsis. Immediately, she was to the theatre for exploratory laparotomy and peritoneal lavage. Unfortunately, the sepsis (bacteria in the blood) has spread everywhere; she went into shock and died in the theatre.
Now, if i may ask you, can appendicitis kill?
Yes, it can kill because the appendix is inflamed and infected with loads of bacteria.
If it is left untreated it can burst or rupture or perforate, spilling all the bacteria and fecal filled fluid into the abdominal cavity all over other organs which can lead to multiple organ failure from the spread of infection and peritonitis or sepsis from spread of bacteria into the blood leading to shock and possibly death.
Deaths from appendicitis is higher in children, the aged or elderly and mostly from developing nations because of their poor health seeking behaviour, delay in making diagnosis, and high rate of perforation. Few deaths can also occur from the complications of surgery,like bleeding, enterocutaneous fistula (an abnormal connection between the intestine and the skin leading to leakage of faeces through skin instead of the anus) or anaesthesia but very rare. Early diagnosis and prompt treatment is key to surviving appendicitis.
What are the causes of appendicitis? click here
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