What do I need to know about this procedure?

An open appendicectomy is the removal of the appendix through a cut on the lower right side of the abdomen.

Anaesthetic

This procedure will require an anaesthetic.

What are the risks of this specific procedure?

There are risks and complications with this procedure.
They include but are not limited to the following:

General risks:

  • Infection can occur, requiring antibiotics and further treatment.
  • Bleeding could occur and may require a return to the operating room. Bleeding is more common if you have been taking blood thinning drugs such as Warfarin, Asprin, Clopidogrel (Plavix or Iscover) or Dipyridamole (Persantin or Asasantin).
  • Small areas of the lung can collapse, increasing the risk of chest infection. This may need antibiotics and physiotherapy.
  • Increased risk in obese people of wound infection, chest infection, heart and lung complications, and thrombosis.
  • Heart attack or stroke could occur due to the strain on the heart.
  • Blood clot in the leg (DVT) causing pain and swelling. In rare cases, part of the clot may break off and go to the lungs.
  • Death as a result of this procedure is possible.

Specific risks:

  • Deep bleeding in the abdominal cavity. This may need fluid replacement or further surgery.
  • Infections such as pus collections can occur in the abdominal cavity. This may need surgical drainage.
  • A weakness can occur in the wound with the development of a rupture. This may need further surgery.
  • Adhesions (bands of scar tissue) may form and cause a bowel obstruction. This can be a short term or a long term complication and may need further surgery.
  • The wound may become thickened and red.
  • Increased risk in smokers of wound and chest infections, heart and lung complications and thrombosis.