Appendectomy Overview

Appendectomy is the surgical removal of the appendix, a small, finger-shaped pouch that is located at the cecum (the junction between the large and small intestines). The surgery is the standard treatment for appendicitis (inflammation and infection of the appendix) and patients usually recover from appendectomy without experiencing complications. A ruptured appendix is considered a medical emergency.

Surgical Procedures

Surgeons use one of two surgical techniques, open appendectomy or laparoscopic appendectomy. The choice of method is made by the surgeon on a case-by-case basis. General anesthesia (agent that renders the patient unconscious) is used in both procedures.

Publication Review By: Stanley J. Swierzewski, III, M.D.

Published: 01 Nov 2001

Last Modified: 27 Jan 2012