Prime Minister (PM) KP Sharma Oli has suffered peritonitis and is kept on a ventilator following appendectomy on Tuesday.
Oli, who reached Manmohan Cardiothoracic Vascular and Transplant Center inside the Tribhuvan University Teaching Hospital (TUTH) premises Tuesday morning after abdominal pain, was diagnosed of appendicitis and peritonitis and underwent laparotomy (incision on abdominal wall) and appendectomy (removal of appendix), according to a statement issued by the hospital.
Peritonitis is an inflammation of the peritoneum, the tissue that lines the inner wall of the abdomen and covers and supports most of the abdominal organs and is usually caused by infection from bacteria or fungi.
Peritonitis, if untreated, can rapidly spread into the blood causing sepsis and to other organs resulting in multiple organ failure and death. The fact that PM Oli's immune system is compromised after the kidney transplant, doctors say, significantly increases the risk of sepsis and organ failure.
He is on a ventilator at the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) and under continuous observation. "His health now seems stable. We, therefore, hope that the infection has not spread to blood," a hospital source confided with Setopati. "It will take some time to determine whether there is infection in blood or not."
Doctors had earlier diagnosed that Oli has appendicitis and advised a surgery to remove the appendix Tuesday itself.
Appendix is a small, pouch-like sac of tissue that is located in the first part of the colon (cecum) in the lower- right abdomen. Lymphatic tissue in the appendix aids in immune function. The official name of the appendix is veriform appendix, which means "worm-like appendage." The appendix harbors bacteria serving as a haven for useful bacteria when illness flushes them from the rest of the intestines. It also helps in immune system.
Appendicitis is inflammation of the appendix, according to onhealth.com. Appendicitis occurs when mucus, stool, a combination of the two or cancer blocks the opening of the appendix that leads to the cecum. Bacteria proliferate in the trapped space and infect the lining of the appendix. If the inflammation and blockage are severe enough, the tissue of the appendix can die and even rupture or burst, leading to a medical emergency.
Removal of the appendix, long considered to be a vestigial organ, is not known to cause any major long-term health problem.