Evaluating your likely current (and near future) state of health means taking into account the risk factors — such as having had an appendectomy — that affect you. Our medical diagnosis tool, The Analyst™, identifies major risk factors by asking the right questions.
Have you had an Appendectomy, a procedure in which the appendix is removed?
Possible responses:→ Don't know
→ Yes, before age 10
→ Yes, before age 20
→ Yes, after age 20
It is now thought by many doctors that the appendix is a "safe house" or cultivation center for the normal, beneficial bacteria that our gut needs. When a serious infection strips away the good bacteria, the appendix can then release good bacteria back into the large intestine to repopulate it.
A study involving 252 patients at Winthrop University Hospital found that patients without an appendix were more than twice as likely to have a recurrence of C. difficile. Recurrence in individuals with their appendix intact occurred in 18% of cases; recurrence in those without their appendix occurred in 45% of cases.
Swedish researchers reported in 2011 that having the appendix (or tonsils) removed before age 20 increases one's risk of suffering a heart attack at a young age – 33% increased risk for the appendix, and 44% for tonsils.