Fast track your treatment
To book an appointment or speak with one of our friendly team, please get in touch using the options below
A procedure to remove an inflamed appendix and prevent complications of appendicitis
The procedure is most commonly performed by a general consultant surgeon or a paediatric surgeon (appendicitis is more common in children, so paediatric doctors need to be experienced in performing an appendectomy). At Circle Health Group, we have a dedicated network of thousands of specialists who are highly experienced in removing your appendix, helping you avoid any complications with your appendix and tummy in the future.
It is not 100% clear what causes appendicitis, but it is a word used to describe the painful swelling and inflammation of your appendix. The entrance to your appendix can become blocked by a small piece of poo, or you might have a urinary tract infection that causes the lymph node within the wall of your bowel to swell, putting pressure on your appendix and causing it to burst. Because the cause of appendicitis is not clear, it is impossible to prevent, but it is very treatable because an appendectomy cures the problem.
The condition usually begins with intermittent pain in the middle of your tummy. This pain can quickly travel to the lower right-hand side of your tummy where your appendix sits. It can become constant and severe, causing some people to sweat and vomit due to the pain. Pressing on the area of your appendix or coughing and walking can make the pain worse. Appendicitis can often go together with sickness and diarrhoea, or you might become constipated or lose your appetite.
Once the operation is complete, the incisions will be closed with dissolvable stitches that will dissolve naturally over time. The surgery generally takes around one hour to perform.
You can wash as usual from the day after the operation using water and shower gel, but it is best to avoid swimming until the areas around your incisions are fully healed. Your surgeon will ensure you know how to take care of the dressing over your incisions, which can usually be left on for several days (you can shower with these on too). You can also get up and walk as soon as you want after surgery, but you might not be able to walk long distances and require some assistance and support when walking initially.
Most people can return home within two days. You will likely be in pain and discomfort when you get home as you recover, but you can take pain medication for this. The areas around your incisions might feel achy and tender, and you might feel increased pain at first when coughing or sneezing. This will resolve as the days go on.
Most people need around two weeks off work after the procedure to rest and recover at home, and the same goes for driving and more strenuous activities such as sport. Your consultant will be able to assess your individual circumstances and offer you an understanding of when it is safest for you to return to work, driving, and more high-impact exercise.
Most people recover fully from an appendectomy within three weeks, returning to normal life and daily activities without pain or discomfort.
Complications specific to appendectomy include:
All of these risk factors are rare. Speak with your consultant about them in more detail – they will be able to reassure you and put your mind at ease.
The surgery itself is not painful because you will be under general anaesthesia throughout, however your tummy will feel tender and sore when you wake up. This can last for a few weeks as you recover.
It is very common to feel tired after any procedure. This is because your body is using energy to replenish and heal after going through a major event. We recommend resting for as long as possible after surgery. Listen to your body and be gentle with yourself as you rest and recover.
An appendectomy is a common emergency surgery that usually takes around an hour to perform.
No, after you have your appendix removed it cannot grow back, meaning you can only have an appendectomy once in your lifetime.
If you want to know more about appendicectomy and find out if it's the right treatment for you, book your appointment online today or call a member of our team directly.