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What's The Link Between Appendicitis And Allergies In Children?

Appendicitis is a serious medical condition where the appendix becomes inflamed and filled with pus, causing a lot of pain. It is a severe disease and said to be extremely common among people. In fact, it is one of the leading causes of stomach pain. Therefore, imagine people's relief and surprise when a study came out stating that people who had allergies when they were children were less prone to suffer from appendicitis.

It sounds extremely confusing. What possibly could be the link between appendicitis and allergies? This study was conducted by Lund University in Sweden. Appendicitis is widespread and many children and adults suffer from complicated appendicitis.

Especially children, more than one-third of children suffer from a more complicated form of appendicitis which requires them to stay in the hospital for a number of days and go through severe surgeries.

In this study, the researchers also found out that appendicitis was not only widespread among children and adults, and one of the most common causes of stomach ache, but also one of the leading causes of an emergency abdominal surgery in the entire world.

First of all, let's discuss the study

The researchers in the study observed all cases of appendicitis between 2007 and 2017 at Skåne University Hospital in Lund. All children under the age of 15 who underwent a surgery in the above-mentioned hospital between the years that are mentioned were observed. There were around 605 cases in total that were included in this study.

They divided the children between those who had IgE-medicated allergy - around 102 children and those who did not - the 503 remaining children. Among the two groups, only 19.6% of the IgE-medicated allergy children contracted the more complicated form of appendicitis, while 46.9% of the no allergy group were affected.

Therefore, in this study, which took place over a decade, it was found out that children who had the most basic sort of allergies like allergy to pollen or animal fur were associated with three times lower risk of developing or suffering from complicated appendicitis.

The reason behind this phenomenon isn't completely proven or known; however, there are certain theories that people believe could be the reason why children with pollen or animal fur allergies do not suffer from appendicitis as other normal children, with different or no allergies do.

One theory states that complicated appendicitis generally happens or depends largely on one's body's immunological response. So this theory basically tries to say that the immunological response of children who have allergies is very different from the children who have no allergies.

Appendicitis, in this situation, happens mostly to children who have the immunological response that nonallergic children do. Thus, children with pollen and animal fur allergy have a lower risk of developing appendicitis. However, the theory has not been investigated and is not to be taken as the scientific or medical reasoning behind the strange correlation.

Martin Salö, one of the leading researchers in this study said, "The outcome of the study supports the theory that complicated appendicitis has a different immunological development compared to uncomplicated appendicitis. The results also provide clues that we hope can lead to the development of new diagnostic aids such as blood tests."

Thus, this study proves a definite link between pollen and animal fur allergies and complicated appendicitis. The reasoning is not quite out yet and researchers are still researching on this and trying to find a proper link that could be logically and physically explained.

Read more about: allergies children
Story first published: Monday, August 20, 2018, 15:00 [IST]
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