Appendectomy - Inpatient

This is the removal of a diseased appendix using small medical instruments inserted into small cuts in the abdomen.

This is the removal of a diseased appendix using small medical instruments inserted into small cuts in the abdomen.

Appendicitis occurs when the appendix becomes infected or inflamed. A laparoscopic appendectomy is the removal of a diseased appendix using small medical instruments and a camera. The instruments are inserted into three or four small cuts in the abdomen.

  • In some cases, the appendix may need to be removed through a larger incision in the lower right area of the abdomen (open appendectomy).
  • An open appendectomy may be necessary if the appendix has ruptured or an abscess has formed.

Though the symptoms may vary, appendicitis may be suspected if you have:

  • Pain in your lower right abdomen
  • Fever
  • Decreased appetite
  • Nausea or vomiting

If you have symptoms of appendicitis, you should be evaluated by a healthcare provider. Do not use heating pads, enemas, or laxatives to try to improve your symptoms.

An appendectomy is the removal of an infected appendix to prevent possible complications. The complications can include:

  • Rupture of the appendix
  • Formation of an abscess
  • Spread of infection throughout the abdomen and into the bloodstream

In most cases, an appendectomy is not a planned surgery. During your surgery, you will receive anesthesia to keep you comfortable and pain free.

  • General anesthesia is the most common type of anesthesia for a laparoscopy. With this type of anesthesia, you are put into a deep sleep and are unable to see, hear or feel anything.
  • Other types of anesthesia may be used during this surgery, but they are less common.

You may go home the day of your surgery, but some people need to stay in the hospital overnight. This care path includes costs for a laparoscopic appendectomy that requires an overnight stay in the hospital.

  • You should arrange to have someone drive you home after the surgery.
  • You may need pain medication and help at home while you recover.

Contact your healthcare provider or go to the emergency room if you have symptoms of appendicitis. Be prepared to discuss your symptoms and how long you have had them.

  • Bring a copy of your medical history (past illnesses, surgeries, and hospitalizations)
  • Make a list of your medications (including over-the-counter)
  • Write down any questions, symptoms or concerns you want to talk about.
  • If your healthcare provider prescribes a medication for you, ask for a generic version. If your doctor thinks that a generic version is not right for you, ask for a medication on the lowest available tier of your Prescription Drug List (PDL).

In most cases, an appendectomy is not a planned surgery. However, if possible, here are some questions to ask your healthcare provider before surgery.

  • What is my diagnosis and reason for the surgery? What non-surgical alternatives are available to me? What are the possible complications of each?
  • What happens if I do not go through with the surgery?
  • What tests are you recommending and why? Will the test results change my treatment plan? If not, then why do I need them?
  • How will I feel after the surgery? Will I have to modify my activity? How long until I can get back to my normal activities?
  • What is your experience in doing this type of surgery? What is your complication rate?
  • Is there any special preparation for the surgery? (If so, get clear instructions on what you need to do.)

Before you go home, make sure you understand all home care instructions (including medications and side effects) and follow-up plans. Your surgeon should let your primary care physician know the details of your surgery and treatment plan.


Also known as:

Removal of Appendix
Laparoscopic Appendectomy
Inflamed Appendix
Appendectomy - Inpatient
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