Common symptoms of mesenteric lymphadenitis often mimic appendicitis, with high fever along with pain or tenderness on the right side or center of the abdomen, according to WebMD. Other symptoms depend on the cause of the inflammation and can include fatigue, loss of appetite, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting. Sometimes, patients get an upper-respiratory infection right before the additional symptoms begin.
The most common cause of mesenteric lymphadenitis is infection, reports WebMD. The bacterium yersinia enterocolitica is the most common infection in children that triggers mesenteric lymphadenitis. Patients with this bacterial infection experience gastroenteritis and other illnesses. Bacterial, viral and parasitic infections can lead to mesenteric lymphadenitis. Inflammatory conditions can also cause mesenteric lymphadenitis. An inflamed pancreas, appendix or bowel can trigger the condition, as can diseases such as lupus, rheumatoid arthritis and sclerosis.
Mesenteric lymphadenitis most commonly affects teens and children, explains WebMD. When a person develops the condition, the lymph nodes outside of the intestines become inflamed. Lymph nodes protect the body from viruses and bacteria.
Children experiencing severe abdominal pain should receive immediate medical attention, stresses WebMD. Mesenteric lymphadenitis usually gets better with treatment, which typically consists of getting an adequate amount of rest, drinking plenty of fluids and using pain relievers.