Peritonitis is an inflammation of the peritoneum, the thin tissue that lines the inner wall of the abdomen and covers most of the abdominal organs. Peritonitis may be localised or generalised, and may result from infection (often due to rupture of a hollow organ as may occur in abdominal trauma or appendicitis) or from a non-infectious process.
The symptoms of peritonitis are abdominal pain and/or tenderness, constipation, vomiting, and fever. Peritonitis is treated through surgery; the infection and any damaged tissue are removed. Peritonitis is a serious condition that requires immediate attention because it can be fatal.
Depending on the severity of the patient's state, the management of peritonitis may include:
- General supportive measures such as vigorous intravenous rehydration and correction of electrolyte disturbances.
- Antibiotics are usually administered intravenously, but they may also be infused directly into the peritoneum. The empiric choice of broad-spectrum antibiotics often consist of multiple drugs, and should be targeted against the most likely agents, depending on the cause of peritonitis (see above); once one or more agents are actually isolated, therapy will of course be targeted on them.
- Surgery (laparotomy) is needed to perform a full exploration and lavage of the peritoneum, as well as to correct any gross anatomical damage that may have caused peritonitis. The exception is spontaneous bacterial peritonitis, which does not always benefit from surgery and may be treated with antibiotics in the first instance.
Peritonitis can be life threatening and may cause a number of different complications. Complications depend on the specific type of peritonitis.
Antibiotics Generic Zithromax - Azithromycin 250/500 mg