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Open Appendectomy In Children


An open appendectomy is surgery to remove your child's appendix through an incision in his lower abdomen.



  • Pain medicine: Your child may need medicine to take away or decrease pain. Know how often your child should get the medicine and how much. Watch for signs of pain in your child. Tell caregivers if his pain continues or gets worse. To prevent falls, stay with your child to help him get out of bed.
  • Antibiotics: This medicine is given to fight an infection caused by bacteria. Give your child this medicine exactly as ordered by his healthcare provider. Do not stop giving your child the antibiotics unless directed by his healthcare provider. Never save antibiotics or give your child leftover antibiotics that were given to him for another illness.
  • Give your child's medicine as directed. Call your child's healthcare provider if you think the medicine is not working as expected. Tell him if your child is allergic to any medicine. Keep a current list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs your child takes. Include the amounts, and when, how, and why they are taken. Bring the list or the medicines in their containers to follow-up visits. Carry your child's medicine list with you in case of an emergency.


Your child may go home with a drain coming out of his incision. A drain is a thin rubber tube used to remove extra fluid from your child's abdomen. Your child's healthcare provider will take the drain out when there is no more fluid coming from the incision. Ask your child's healthcare provider how to care for your child's drain. Do not remove your child's drain unless your child's healthcare provider says it is okay.

Follow up with your child's healthcare provider as directed:

Your child may need to return to have his stitches or staples removed. Your child's healthcare provider will check his incision for signs of infection. If your child has a drain, it will be removed. Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.

Return to school or activities:

Ask your child's healthcare provider when it is okay for your child to return to school or his usual activities.

Contact your child's healthcare provider if:

  • Your child has a fever.
  • Your child has nausea or vomiting.
  • You have questions or concerns about your child's condition, surgery, or care.

Seek care immediately or call 911 if:

  • Blood soaks through your child's bandage.
  • Your child's incision is red, swollen, or has pus coming from it.
  • Your child's stitches come apart.
  • Your child has severe pain in his abdomen.
  • Your child's drain is loose or has fallen out.
  • You see a bulge coming out of your child's surgery site.

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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.