4 Appendectomy Nursing Care Plans


Appendectomy is the surgical removal of the appendix. An inflamed appendix may be removed using a laparoscopic approach with laser. However, the presence of multiple adhesions, retroperitoneal positioning of the appendix, or the likelihood of rupture necessitates an open (traditional) procedure.

Studies indicate that laparoscopic appendectomy results in significantly less postoperative pain, earlier resumption of solid foods, a shorter hospital stay, lower wound infection rate, and a faster return to normal activities than open appendectomy.

Nursing Care Plans

Nursing care planning and management for patients who underwent appendectomy includes: preventing complications, promoting comfort, and providing information.

Here are four (4) nursing care plans (NCP) and nursing diagnosis for patients who underwent appendectomy:

  1. Acute Pain
  2. Risk for Deficient Fluid Volume
  3. Risk for Infection
  4. Deficient Knowledge

Risk for Infection

Nursing Diagnosis

Risk factors may include

  • Inadequate primary defenses; perforation/rupture of the appendix; peritonitis; abscess formation
  • Invasive procedures, surgical incision

Desired Outcomes

  • Achieve timely wound healing; free of signs of infection/inflammation, purulent drainage, erythema, and fever.
Nursing InterventionsRationale
Practice and instruct in good handwashing and aseptic wound care. Encourage and provide perineal care. Reduces risk of spread of bacteria.
Inspect incision and dressings. Note characteristics of drainage from wound (if inserted), presence of erythema.Provides for early detection of developing infectious process and monitors resolution of preexisting peritonitis.
Monitor vital signs. Note onset of fever, chills, diaphoresis, changes in mentation, reports of increasing abdominal pain.Suggestive of presence of infection or developing sepsis, abscess, peritonitis.
Obtain drainage specimens if indicated.Gram’s stain, culture, and sensitivity testing is useful in identifying causative organism and choice of therapy.
 Administer antibiotics as appropriate. Antibiotics given before appendectomy are primarily for prophylaxis of wound infection and are not continued postoperatively. Therapeutic antibiotics are administered if the appendix is ruptured or abscessed or peritonitis has developed.
Prepare and assist with incision and drainage (I&D) if indicated. May be necessary to drain contents of localized abscess.
Watch closely for possible surgical complications.Continuing pain and fever may signal an abscess.

Recommended Resources

Recommended nursing diagnosis and nursing care plan books and resources.

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See also

Other recommended site resources for this nursing care plan:

More nursing care plans related to gastrointestinal disorders:


Matt Vera is a registered nurse with a bachelor of science in nursing since 2009 and is currently working as a full-time writer and editor for Nurseslabs. During his time as a student, he knows how frustrating it is to cram on difficult nursing topics. Finding help online is nearly impossible. His situation drove his passion for helping student nurses by creating content and lectures that are easy to digest. Knowing how valuable nurses are in delivering quality healthcare but limited in number, he wants to educate and inspire nursing students. As a nurse educator since 2010, his goal in Nurseslabs is to simplify the learning process, break down complicated topics, help motivate learners, and look for unique ways of assisting students in mastering core nursing concepts effectively.
  • I am following this.there are no any class or courses to train for NCELEX in my country. But I trying it via internet.thanks for helping us.

  • thank you Matt, I am in the same position now, doing nursing care plans is a challenge. thank you for your ability to present it clearly.

  • are the diagnosis for post operative care or its combined pre and post op. for example interventions of acute pain i read somewhere talking for not to apply hot compress for fear of rupture?

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