So far there have been several studies from Europe showing that antibiotics may be safely used to treat appendicitis in many cases. However, the studies have involved small numbers of patients and have exhibited some flaws in their methods. A few studies from the US have been published, but they were not randomized or prospective.
I have blogged about some of these studies on three occasions. If you would like to read these posts, click on their titles.
Antibiotics instead of surgery for appendicitis? I'm still not convinced
Antibiotics instead of surgery for appendicitis? No way
Antibiotics instead of surgery for appendicitis? I don’t think so.
A group of surgeons in Washington State are putting together what will be the first randomized prospective trial of antibiotics vs. surgery for appendicitis in the United States. In order to obtain a grant from the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute to help fund the project, the investigators must demonstrate that people in this country would be willing to participate in such a study.
To help determine the level of interest, they have written a brief explanation of why this study is being proposed. It parallels my thinking on the subject.
At the end of their post is a link to survey involving one question:
If you had appendicitis, would you be willing to join a study that would randomize you (a 50% chance, or flip of a coin) to “surgery ” or “antibiotics?”
You don't have to read the Washington researchers' post to take the survey.
You may click here to answer that question. Thanks.