What do appendix do for your body

29.03.2021 By Vurg

what do appendix do for your body

What Is the Appendix? A Vestigial Organ, or One With a Purpose?

Apr 07, †Ј Contrary to conventional wisdom, your appendix might serve a purpose. It might be a haven for useful bacteria in your body. These useful bacteria might Author: Elizabeth Connor. May 30, †Ј The appendix is a thin, roughly four-inch-long tube that's part of your gastrointestinal (GI) tract. (1) The GI tract is a complex group of organs, each of which helps your body digest and absorb.

The role of the appendix has long been something bodh a mystery, but some experts now believe they've finally discovered its function. The appendix is a thin, roughly four-inch-long tube that's part of your gastrointestinal Appendid tract.

The GI tract appendis a complex group of organs, each of which helps your body digest and absorb food. Your upper GI tract includes your esophagus, stomach, and the first appensix of your small intestine, called the duodenum. The lower GI tract is made up of most of your small intestine and all of your large intestine, which includes your colon, rectum, and anal canal.

Your appendix is located in the lower right part of your abdomen, in an area that doctors refer to as McBurney's point. If applying pressure on McBurney's point results in pain or tenderness, your doctor may suspect that you have appendicitis. The finger-shaped appendix is attached to a part of your large intestine called the cecum Ч a small pouch typically considered to be the beginning of the large intestine.

The muscles lining your GI tract, along with the hormones and enzymes that the system produces, allow your GI tract to break down and process food. Your appendix doesn't directly help with digestion. It's been unclear what role appedix appendix has in the body, and removal of the organ doesn't appear to ap;endix any negative health consequences.

For many years, scientists believed the appendix was a vestigial organ Ч one that lost its original function through centuries of evolution. Researchers thought that no other mammals had an appendix, aside from our closest ape relatives.

What's more, the cecum of plant-eating mammals is far larger than it is in humans. On this basis, Charles Darwin theorized that our distant ancestors also had large ceca, foor allowed them to dine on leaves like the herbivores of today.

Bodj as these ancestors shifted what to do near richmond va a diet based on fruits, which are easier to digest, their ceca shrank.

The appendix, Darwin believed, is just a shriveled up part of the wht, which evolution hasn't entirely eliminated. Some scientists now believe the appendix is not useless after all, and may help our guts recover after a gastrointestinal disease strikes. The appendix contains a particular type of tissue associated with the lymphatic system, which carries the white blood cells needed to fight infections. In recent years, scientists have found that lymphatic tissue encourages the growth of some beneficial gut bacteria, which play an important role in human digestion and immunity.

Studies have also shown that the lining of the gut contains a biofilm, or a thin layer of microbes, mucusand immune system molecules Ч and these biofilms appear to be most pronounced in the appendix. According to the so-called "safe house" theory, the appendix protects a collection of beneficial gut bacteria when certain diseases wipe appendux out from elsewhere in the GI tract. Once the immune system has rid the body of the infection, the bacteria emerge from the appendix biofilm and recolonize the gut.

Researchers have recently found that numerous animals, including great apes, other primates, opossums, wombats, rabbits, and certain rodents all have structures similar to the appendix. Sometimes, the appendix can become inflamed and infected, resulting in a apprndix called appendicitis.

Appendicitis is often the result of an abdominal jour that has spread to the tiny organ, or some kind of obstruction that has blocked the small how to make beef gravy from beef stock of the appendix.

Sources of blockage include, among other things:. The infection or obstruction causes the bacteria in the appendix to grow out of control, and what is the significance of all souls day organ can fill with pus and swell.

Appendicitis causes intense abdominal pain and other GI symptoms, including vomiting and diarrhea. Removal of the appendix an appendectomy is often the necessary course of action, though increasingly, antibiotics may be recommended and used to treat the infection without the need for surgical intervention Ч depending on bodu severity of boyd case and fof health factors in the individual patient.

If the problem is left untreated, the pressure in the organ will increase until the appendix rupturesor bursts. When the appendix bursts, it spreads its content throughout the abdomen, potentially infecting the peritoneum, which is the silk-like membrane that lines the abdominal cavity.

A peritoneum infection, called peritonitiscan then lead to sepsisa complication that's potentially deadly if cor treated wnat. By subscribing you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. Health Topics. Health Tools. Last Updated: May 30, Medically Reviewed. The role of the appendix has long been something of a mystery, but some experts now bosy they've discovered its function. The 'Safe House' Theory of the Appendix Some scientists now believe the appendix is not useless after all, and may help our guts recover after a gastrointestinal disease strikes.

Sources of blockage include, among other things: Hard pieces of stool Parasites or intestinal worms Ingested objects, including air gun pellets and pins Abdominal trauma GI tract ulcers Enlarged appendix lymphatic tissue The infection or obstruction causes the bacteria in the appendix to grow out of control, and the organ can fill with pus and swell.

Editorial Sources and Fact-Checking. Appendix Anatomy. Encyclopaedia Brittanica. December April 30, Appendix Evolved More Than 30 Times. February 12, Journal of Theoretical Biology. January 15, Clinical and Experimental Immunology. October The Guardian. March 3, Mayo Clinic. May 16,

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Sep 12, †Ј Furthermore, as an adult, the appendix works as a sort of independent immune system, which is able to more carefully filter and respond to potentially unwanted materials in the food that we eat. By helping to manage the production of antigens and the immune response of the gut, the appendix can also strengthen the body against autoimmune diseases. Aug 19, †Ј One of the most important roles of the appendix is producing and protecting beneficial probiotic bacteria colonies within the digestive system. Researchers know that our digestive systems contain bacteria which we need in order to properly digest food. . Nov 24, †Ј WebMDТs Appendix Anatomy Page provides detailed images, definitions, and information about the appendix. Learn about its function, parts, location in the body.

This tube-shaped sac is attached to your large intestine. In addition to humans, a few other mammals like apes and koalas also have them. The official name of the appendix is "vermiform appendix" because of its thin and worm-like shape.

For many years, experts dismissed the appendix as a remnant of evolution that is no longer necessary. Recently, however, medical researchers have begun to answer the question "what does the appendix do" and found there are numerous answers.

One of the most important roles of the appendix is producing and protecting beneficial probiotic bacteria colonies within the digestive system. Researchers know that our digestive systems contain bacteria which we need in order to properly digest food. If we get sick, the important bacteria may be killed off. When this happens, the appendix acts as a reserve for storing the good bacteria. Once our immune system removes the disease, these bacteria can emerge to recolonize our guts.

Based on the current evidence, experts believe that the answer to "what does the appendix do" could be store beneficial gut flora. The appendix can store the good bacteria for backups in case of illness.

This is supported by research that shows that people without an appendix can be as much as four times as likely to suffer from a recurrent form of Clostridium difficile colitis, which is when the large intestine is irritated by spore-forming bacteria. In addition to helping protect beneficial flora in the gut, the appendix may also help our immune system develop. Research shows that lymphoid tissue builds up within the appendix following birth. The appendix also helps B lymphocytes mature and assists with the production of antibodies.

It even produces molecules which help lymphocytes move throughout the body. Although the appendix is an important organ in our bodies, it can still lead to appendicitis, which is common and serious and involves inflammation and the possibility of rupture. It is possible that the small number of germs in our modern society leads to overreactions of the immune system.

This can lead to attacks on good bacteria within the appendix. Some experts theorize that this type of overreaction may cause the inflammation of appendicitis or intestinal obstruction of acute appendicitis. Now that you know the answer to "what does the appendix do", it is time to learn more about the possible problems. Appendicitis is when the appendix becomes inflamed. This medical emergency almost always requires immediate surgery so the appendix can be removed.

This in turn causes peritonitis, a type of serious inflammation affecting the peritoneum, the lining of the abdominal cavity. It can be fetal if not treated with antibiotics right away.

Appendicitis is typically identified by a dull pain close to the upper abdomen or naval that feels sharper as it goes towards the lower right portion of the abdomen. After this initial sign, it can also cause nausea and vomiting, loss of appetite, high fevers, the lack of ability to pass gas, and abdominal swelling.

About half of the time, appendicitis will also include a sharp or dull pain within the lower or upper abdomen, rectum, or back. It is also linked to diarrhea or constipation, severe cramps, and painful urination around half the time. Appendicitis is hard to diagnose because of the vague symptoms that are similar to other issues.

The standard treatment is an appendectomy, or the removal of the appendix. Most doctors would rather remove the appendix quickly if they suspect appendicitis as this prevents the possibility of rupture.

In cases where the appendix created an abscess, there may be two procedures. The first will drain this abscess of fluid and pus, and the second will be the appendectomy. Some research shows that acute appendicitis can sometimes be treated with antibiotics. It is also possible to develop appendix cancer. This occurs if the cells within your appendix become abnormal, multiplying without control.

They will form a tumor or growth of tissue which may be benign or cancerous. Cancerous tumors are malignant and can grow, spreading to other body parts. Appendix cancer is also known as appendiceal cancer. There are also various types of tumors that can grow in the appendix. It is possible, however, to experience appendicitis, bloating, abdominal or pelvic pain, ascites fluid within the abdomen , changes in the function of bowels, increase in waistline possibly including navel protrusion , and infertility.

Biopsies are the most common test used to diagnose appendix cancer. This involves removing a small piece of tissue and examining it. There are several surgical treatments that remove the tumor as well as some of the surrounding healthy tumor. Appendectomies remove the appendix; hemicolectomies remove a part of the colon that is next to your appendix.

Debulking surgery is typically used for later-stage cancer. Sometimes, treatment will also include removing the peritoneum. Copyright WWW. Last Updated 30 April, What Does the Appendix Do? Reserves Good Bacteria for Digestive Health One of the most important roles of the appendix is producing and protecting beneficial probiotic bacteria colonies within the digestive system. Plays a Role in the Development of Immune System In addition to helping protect beneficial flora in the gut, the appendix may also help our immune system develop.

Notes for Appendix Issues Although the appendix is an important organ in our bodies, it can still lead to appendicitis, which is common and serious and involves inflammation and the possibility of rupture. Medical Conditions Concerning the Appendix 1. Appendicitis Now that you know the answer to "what does the appendix do", it is time to learn more about the possible problems. Symptoms of Appendicitis Appendicitis is typically identified by a dull pain close to the upper abdomen or naval that feels sharper as it goes towards the lower right portion of the abdomen.

Diagnosis of Appendicitis Appendicitis is hard to diagnose because of the vague symptoms that are similar to other issues. How to Treat Appendicitis The standard treatment is an appendectomy, or the removal of the appendix. Appendix Cancer It is also possible to develop appendix cancer. Diagnosis of Appendix Cancer Biopsies are the most common test used to diagnose appendix cancer.

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