An abdominal infection is an infection which affects organs of the abdominal cavity. Abdominal cavity is the area that holds the bulk of the viscera. The organs of the abdominal cavity include: stomach, spleen, pancreas, small intestine, kidneys, large intestine, gallbladder.
Abdominal infection can be associated with a wide variety of causes, varying from ruptured organs to surgical interventions. These infections can range from mild to life-threatening if not treated properly.
Abdominal infections develop when the abdominal environment is exposed to microorganisms. This may be a result of lesions or ruptures of an abdominal organ, releasing pathogenic bacteria into the abdominal cavity, or in case of abdominal trauma when bacteria can penetrate through a wound in the abdomen. Surgery can also provoke infections in the abdomen if the environment, operational material are nor sterile. The treatment of abdominal infection often include hospitalization because proper monitoring of vital function is required.
Symptoms of an abdominal cavity infection can vary. The most common symptoms of abdominal infection include swelling, redness, tenderness. Patients can also experience symptoms related to damaged organs of the abdominal cavity such as jaundice to decreased urine. In severe cases patients may suffer from exhaustion and, extremely high body temperature, depressed appetite, confusion of consciousness.
Abdominal infection can easily spread throughout organism causing damages of different organs and systems or causing sepsis. In severe cases treatment may include surgical opening the abdominal cavity for disinfection of the infected area. Patient are usually prescribed antibiotics to combat microorganisms involved in pathogenic process.