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Antibiotics for appendicitis may work as well as surgery, study finds

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SARASOTA, Fla. -- For years, surgery has been the gold standard in the treatment of appendicitis, but antibiotics are fast being recognized as an effective and less-invasive alternative.

Studies of antibiotics versus surgery yield positive results suggesting three quarters of those with diagnosed early enough whose appendices haven't burst may fare as well as those who undergoing surgery. There are currently more than 300,000 appendectomies performed in the U.S. each year.

Now new research of children with appendicitis published Wednesday in the Journal of the American Medical Association, (JAMA) suggests some of those could be treated just as well with antibiotics.

Daniel Cooper, of Cooper Concierge Cardiology and Internal Medicine said early detection is key, and besides a physical examination, a CT scan is an important diagnostic tool.

"As the antibiotics became better and stronger and with earlier detection, we may be able to prevent three out of four patients from actually having surgery" Explained Dr. Cooper.

The study outcomes of those taking antibiotics versus surgery was comparable.

With antibiotics there were no scars, less down time for recovery, and therefore less financial impact for families as well.

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