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Peritonitis is an infection of the lining of the abdominal wall (peritoneum) caused by bacteria or irritating substances. Peritonitis causes pain and swelling in the abdomen and can be very serious if it is not treated.
Symptoms of peritonitis include:
A person with these symptoms requires immediate medical attention. Treatment typically involves surgery and antibiotics. Without treatment, the illness gets worse rapidly and can become life-threatening.
Current as of: November 7, 2018
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine & Brian O'Brien, MD, FRCPC - Internal Medicine & Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & Nancy Ann Shadick, MD, MPH - Rheumatology
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