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Why does poop sometimes get stuck in the appendix

As opposed to going through the large intestine?
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Hello Lea!
Since I am a Surgical First Assistant, I have help remove thousands of appendix (25+ years). I would like to add that a ruptured appendix can be life threatening!

The theory that I and all of my friends (Surgeons, Assistants, etc..) go with is that the appendix has evolved into what is is now, about the size of your pinky. It use to be much larger and was utilized to capture such things as rocks, wood, dirt, bone, etc.. back in the day before we evolved into today's human being. That being said, one day the appendix will not even exist.

We have found such things as buttons, safety pins, marbles, coins, small toys, etc.. within the removed appendix.

Please contact me with any other questions/ info. I am normally checking the Orthopedic Community as I am the Leader there. Have a great day! JD1963

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That is incredible! Finding buttons etc..
8271277 tn?1397395007
Well - it usually doesn't get stuck in the appendix, although sometimes an x-ray will show what they call a "fecolith" in the appendix - a calcified piece of poop.  But the interesting aspect of your question involves the purpose of the appendix - no one knows! One investigator in England has a very interesting hypothesis, however. He feels that the appendix is a "storage closet" of sorts which sticks off of the cecum - the beginng of the large intestine - and stores small amounts of feces - and the normal "healthy" bacteria. If the person has cholera or some other bad diarrhea-causing illness, the colon is emptied out and has large amounts of the "bad" bacteria. After the body has fought off the infection, there needs to be a source of the normal bacteria. Since the appendix is a dead-end, it does not get blasted clean with the diarrhea, and can "seed" the normal bacteria back into the intestine.  It is a pretty interesting theory, and one of the few that makes sense.
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