80-90% of the time when I solely transcribed ER reports in the past and a doctor dictates “patient with right lower quadrant abdominal pain”, etc., I pretty much knew (in my mind) that the patient had an appendicitis. Sure enough, when the doctor came to the end of the report and with a description of the diagnosis, he (or she) would dictate: “DIAGNOSIS: Appendicitis.” This is the joy I still get from transcribing all types of reports now – putting my medical terminology knowledge, A&P knowledge together and figuring out what a particular patient may have before the doctor gives a final diagnoses.
Appendicitis is an inflammation of the appendix. The appendix is a small pouch attached to the cecum, the beginning of the large intestine. It is commonly found in children and young adults, but obviously is not discriminatory to anyone of any age, gender, race, culture, etc.
The pain is predominantly on the right lower part of the abdomen, but some may suffer pain in different areas: some on the left side, some on or underneath the belly button, but normally there are other symptoms that may occur. Fever, chills, nausea and vomiting, loss of appetite, constipation and/or diarrhea, pain when coughing or sneezing and pain in the abdomen while riding over bumps are many other symptoms that can occur with appendicitis.
The cause of appendicitis is not fully understood and could be from various reasons such as the appendix may become blocked by stool or foreign body, or obstruction causing bacteria to invade the appendix, causing it to fill with pus and swell. Bacteria invading your body is NOT cool and can cause a whole host of other problems.
Appendicitis is not to be taken likely as it can rupture and can cause potential life-threatening infections if not treated. Never let that type of pain go on for days! Medical professionals suggest that if you’re having especially severe abdominal pain and/or fever, nausea, vomiting and the symptoms continue to occur and/or worsen, please seek medical attention immediately.