Antibiotic therapy may be the best treatment option for acute appendicitis - although not for all patients. Some of them will still have to resort to surgery. This information was announced by experts in the course of a large-scale experiment called "Evaluation of the results of antibiotic use and removal of the appendix in appendicitis. The findings were presented this fall in the New England Journal of Medicine.
Each year in the United States alone, surgeons perform more than 250,000 procedures on patients with appendicitis . Appendectomy is one of the 20 most common surgical procedures. However, as shown by a new experiment, which involved 25 clinical institutions from all over the United States, a course of antibiotics can help a huge number of patients to cure the inflammatory process without the use of surgery.
In the course of scientific work, experts analyzed the medical histories of more than 1.5 thousand patients who sought medical help with a diagnosis of acute appendicitis, starting from spring 2016 to early 2020. The patients taking part in the study, on average, were 38 years old: among them, about 60% were men, and the rest were women. In some patients, the diagnosis was supplemented by appendicolitis - an inflammatory process resulting from the release of a stone from the appendix into the abdominal cavity. The researchers prescribed 50% of patients on antibiotic therapy for 10 days, and the remaining 50% - surgical removal of the appendix . In general, the patients' health was monitored for three months.
As shown by observation, 7 out of ten patients who received antibiotic therapy did not require further surgery for all three months. At the same time, patients with appendicolitis had a higher risk of complications, and they required surgery more often. Although, it is also necessary to voice such information that stones in the appendix are a rather rare occurrence.
According to practitioners, both antibiotic therapy and appendectomy are methods that have both pros and cons. In particular, the removal of appendicitis requires both special preparation and a certain recovery period, which includes all the same antibiotic therapy. However, non-surgical treatment also has its risks. For example, insufficient long-term use of drugs, or an incorrectly selected dosage can affect the further development of the inflammatory process, which after a while will still require surgical intervention. Moreover, the ability to treat appendicitis with antibiotics can lead to patients trying to self-medicate, which is extremely unacceptable.
A few years ago, scientists representing the Royal Medical Center of Great Britain in Nottingham proposed treating appendicitis with antibiotics. It was only about uncomplicated forms of the disease.
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