(HealthDay News) -- Appendicitis is a painful inflammation of the appendix. It can be life-threatening if ignored and the appendix ruptures.
More than 5 percent of people in the United States will develop appendicitis at some point during their lives, the U.S. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases says.
It may be difficult to distinguish appendicitis from gas or other abdominal pain, the agency says in mentioning common appendicitis symptoms:
- Pain that starts near your belly button and radiates lower and to the right.
- Pain that worsens quickly.
- Pain that gets worse when you move, breathe deeply, cough or sneeze.
- Pain that occurs suddenly and may wake you from sleep.