An appendectomy is a kind of surgery involving appendix removal, and it is completed when the appendix is infected, a condition called appendicitis.
There are two methods used for appendectomies:
- Open appendectomy: With this procedure, a cut or incision between 2-4 inches long is made in the lower right side of the abdomen. The surgeon is then able to remove the appendix through this incision.
- Laparoscopic appendectomy: This procedure is less invasive than the open appendectomy since it is completed without having to make a large incision. Instead, a surgeon makes 1-3 small cuts, and a laparoscope is placed into one of them. Attached to the laparoscope is a small video camera that offers visualization to the surgeon. Through this, the surgeon can guide their tools and removes the appendix through one of the incisions.
In the case of a burst appendix, an open appendectomy is often needed because of the spread of infection.
For both procedures, the risk of complications is low, although a laparoscopy appendectomy offers a shorter hospital stay and easier recovery.