What Are the Symptoms for a Ruptured Appendix?


Quick Answer

The symptoms of a ruptured appendix are similar to, though often more severe than, those of an appendix that is merely inflamed. These symptoms are, according to MedlinePlus, fever, tenderness and pain at the site of the inflammation, nausea, vomiting and trouble passing gas. Some or all of these symptoms may temporarily improve if the appendix ruptures, but they are likely to return soon and with greater severity.

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Full Answer

According to MedlinePlus, patients whose appendicitis has developed into a rupture often enjoy a brief respite from the pain and swelling caused by an inflamed appendix. This relief passes quickly, however, and the ensuing pain can be more severe than that of the original inflammation. A patient with a ruptured appendix often becomes extremely sensitive to touch, and putting pressure on the site of the appendix can cause the muscles of the abdomen to contract with such force as to temporarily create a "washboard" effect.

Other symptoms such as fever, nausea and vomiting return shortly after the rupture and are usually a result of the body's systemic effort to fight off a serious infection, notes MedlinePlus. The presence of this infection can usually be confirmed with a blood test to obtain a white blood cell count.

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