Appendicitis is a quite serious problem. This condition, characterized by acute inflammation of the appendix, can occur in anyone, regardless of age and gender. The only treatment is a surgical operation to remove the inflamed appendix.
If the operation is not performed, the consequences of appendicitis can be very serious, up to a fatal outcome for the patient. This danger arises if appendicitis is allowed to progress to the stage of peritonitis. Therefore, it is better to consult a doctor immediately, who will quickly diagnose and prescribe the most effective treatment.
Causes of the inflammatory process in the appendix:
- infectious diseases of the body (typhoid fever, tuberculosis, etc.);
- inflammation of blood vessels affecting nearby tissues.
To diagnose "acute appendicitis," a series of tests is required. One of the mandatory tests is a blood analysis.
Leukocytes in appendicitis
A well-known fact is that leukocyte levels in the blood can change in the case of appendicitis inflammation. Therefore, if there is suspicion of appendicitis, the doctor may prescribe a blood test for leukocytes. Confirmation of the diagnosis will be sufficient if there is an increase in leukocyte levels.
The maximum value is 18 with a norm of no more than 9 (for a healthy body). Exceeding this level indicates inflammation in the body and the inflamed appendix needs to be removed urgently. Delay in this case will lead to the development of the disease and the emergence of serious consequences.
White blood cell count
It is quite natural that the blood test results for appendicitis will be individual for each patient. Therefore, the formula "elevated leukocyte levels as a sign of appendicitis" is not correct. In young patients, the level may, on the contrary, increase, while in elderly patients, it may even be absent.
It is also important to consider that after the operation to remove the appendix, the leukocyte level does not normalize instantly. The doctor prescribes recovery medications and insists on strict adherence to the daily routine, rest, and a special diet. The restoration of leukocytes will occur with the complete recovery of the body and healing of the postoperative wound.
If an elevated level of leukocytes above 9 was detected in appendicitis, then upon discharge, the level should not be higher. The patient will be kept in the hospital until fully recovered if leukocytosis persists, and the indicators do not decrease. The doctor will prescribe additional treatment with a repeat blood test. The main thing to understand is that elevated leukocytes are a symptom of inflammation in the body, so accepting this indicator is not acceptable.
Normal white blood cell count
In the process of treating appendicitis and during the rehabilitation period, an accurate count of leukocytes is important. Therefore, tests for appendicitis are extremely important. In the norm, as already mentioned, the leukocyte count should fluctuate around 8-10. If the level has risen to 20, but the treating doctor considers this normal, it is better to find another doctor, as exceeding the level of 18 already indicates negative processes in the body.
If there are doubts, it is better to take a repeat analysis. However, if all the main symptoms of appendicitis are observed, but the leukocyte count is not elevated, it is likely an individual feature of the patient's body. In such cases, an abdominal ultrasound is recommended to confirm the diagnosis.
Additional examination - urine analysis in appendicitis
Urinalysis is routinely prescribed along with a blood test for appendicitis. In this context, it is important to remember that there may be a significant decrease or increase in red blood cells in the blood. Leukocytes increase when the inflamed appendix comes into contact with the bladder. Clinical manifestations may resemble a common cystitis, making the diagnosis of appendicitis difficult in such situations.
The number of red blood cells and leukocytes varies depending on the form of the disease. For example, in retrocecal appendicitis, the indicators may not increase significantly, making it practically impossible to diagnose appendicitis based solely on them.
In any case, the results of tests for appendicitis should be studied by a doctor, applying them to the overall clinical picture and drawing professional conclusions. If the doctor's qualifications are high, the diagnosis will be accurate.