Acute appendicitis is one of the most common acute surgical abdominal emergencies.  More than 34,600 cases were treated in UK hospitals in 2006 to 2007. Most cases were in male subjects (30,120) and occurred predominantly in the 15 to 59 year age group. A large majority presented (29,576) as medical emergencies.  More than 250,000 appendectomies are performed each year in the US;  however, the incidence is lower in populations where a high-fibre diet is consumed.  The overall lifetime risk of developing acute appendicitis is 8.6% for males and 6.7% for females; lifetime risk of appendectomy is around 12% in males and 23% in females.   The rate of appendectomy is around 10 per 10,000 cases per year in the US.  This condition is most commonly seen in patients aged between early teens and late 40s. There is a slight male to female predominance (1.3:1).
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