People Are Realising What Actually Happens When Your Appendix Gets Removed, And I'm In Shock

Don't mind me, just desperately grabbing my abdomen.
PixelCatchers via Getty Images

We’ve covered what actually happens during a smear test and C-section at HuffPost UK before ― and both of those are likely not exactly what you’d expect.

But what about appendectomies, a procedure about 50,000 people go through yearly in the UK?

In a recent TikTok, Dr. Karan Rajan revealed exactly what goes on during an appendix removal, and it turns out I had exactly 0 ideas as to what went on during the world’s most common abdominal surgery.

Which is?

The procedure starts off with three small cuts in your abdomen, the doctor revealed.

Surgeons then insert “a telescope-like camera and two surgical instruments” into the freshly-formed entryways.

The appendix is found by locating the beginning of your colon, Dr. Rajan says ― “it’s the little bulgy tissue hanging off the end.”

In case you thought the actual removal of the appendix was done immediately after locating it by using scalpels (as I did), you’re wrong ― the doctor revealed that first, a 1,000° electrical charge is used to cut off its blood supply.

“Then, a lasso is tied around the bottom of the appendix to stop poop leaking into your insides,” Dr. Rajan added.

Only then is the appendix removed and placed into a small bag, where it is analysed “under a microscope.”

Odd as it might look, Columbia University’s Surgery paper reads: “laparoscopic appendectomy is now considered one of the safest, lowest-complication surgical procedures performed today.”

People had *thoughts” in the comments

Some people wrote in the comments that their appendectomy scars didn’t reflect that procedure ― “I have a 2.5-inch scar on my right side where [my appendix] was. I don’t think they removed mine like this,” one commenter wrote.

Cleveland Clinic says “There are two kinds of appendectomy surgeries: laparoscopic [the kind Dr. Rajan showed here]and open. Your surgeon will determine the best type for you.”

The NHS says “Keyhole surgery (laparoscopy) is usually the preferred method of removing the appendix because the recovery tends to be quicker than with open surgery,” but while it’s seen as superior, a 2009 paper found about 46% of appendectomies were still done via open surgeries in German hospitals throughout 2006.

So if you have an appendectomy scar, your procedure probably looked different ― but if not, it’s electric charges and lanky cameras all the way.


How your appendix is removed!

♬ original sound - Dr Karan Raj