The survival rate for people with secondary peritonitis is poor, particularly for patients with weak immune systems, symptoms for more than 48 hours before treatment, and older patients, states the University of Maryland Medical Center. With proper medication and care, approximately 70 percent of peritonitis patients survive, states U.S. Pharmacist.
The peritoneum is a thin abdominal wall lining that covers the organs inside, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. Secondary peritonitis, the more common type, develops when a bacterial or fungal infection enters the peritoneum from a tear in the abdominal wall. A stomach ulcer and ruptured appendix are among the causes of abdominal wall tears. Symptoms of secondary peritonitis include abdominal pain, inflammation and tenderness, fever and chills, and loss of appetite.