Michelle Badash, MS
Peritonitis is an inflammation or infection of the peritoneum. The peritoneum is a thin tissue lining that covers the inside of the abdominal cavity. It also covers the outside of the intestines and other abdominal organs.
There are several types:
Peritonitis is a serious condition. It requires immediate treatment. If not promptly treated, it can be fatal.
Factors that may increase your chance of peritonitis include:
Peritonitis may cause:
The doctor will ask about your symptoms and medical history. A physical exam will be done. Tests may include:
Treatment depends on the cause. It may include:
There are no current guidelines to prevent peritonitis.
American Gastroenterological Association
The American College of Gastroenterology
Canadian Association of Gastroenterology
Bacterial peritonitis. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at: http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T115066/Bacterial-peritonitis. Updated Ocotber 24, 2014. Accessed September 14, 2016.
Feldman M, et al. Sleisenger & Fordtran's Gastrointestinal and Liver Disease. 8th ed. St. Louis: Mosby, 2005.
Olendorf D, Jeryan C, Boyden K.
Gale Encyclopedia of Medicine. Detroit, MI: Gale Group Research Company; 2000.
Peritonitis. Mayo Clinic website. Available at:
http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/peritonitis/basics/definition/con-20032165. Updated July 2011. Accessed August 26, 2014.
Townsend CM, et al. Sabiston Textbook of Surgery. 17th ed. Philadelphia: Saunders, 2004.
Yamada T, Alpers DH, et al.
Textbook of Gastroenterology. 4th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2003.
Last reviewed August 2015 by Daus Mahnke, MD
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