Many people don’t realize that the appendix has an important biological function.
Actually, scientists haven’t described its function precisely up until now. This organ is a tube-shaped sac attached to the lower end of the large intestine.
The medical term for appendix is ”vermiform appendix” because it has worm-like shape. For so long the appendix has been regarded to have very little physiological function, but scientists suggest that this ”useless” organ is quite the opposite.
Charles Darwin and many other researchers thought that appendix is a vestigial organ which helped people digest tree bark. As tree bark was the food of human ancestors, the appendix today doesn’t have any bodily function. But, a study conducted at the Duke University Medical Center, suggests another discovery.
The authors of this study concluded that the appendix can actually protect beneficial probiotics in the digestive system. These healthy bacteria have an important role in keeping your digestive tract healthy. When your immune system is weaker, you are more prone to diseases, and these bacteria are destroyed. Then, the appendix serves as a reserve for good bacteria.
Also, the study has shown that the appendix has an important function in the development of the immune system. To be more precise, a study has found that lymphoid tissue builds up in the appendix after birth. So, the appendix promotes the maturation of B lymphocytes and stimulates the production of antibodies.
Additionally, people who have had their appendix surgically removed, are more likely to experience an irritation of the large intestine. This condition usually occurs when the body is deficient in good bacteria, which again proves the link between the appendix and its function in protecting the beneficial probiotics.
The research is ongoing, but appendix is no longer regarded as an organ without function.
You should also know the symptoms of appendicitis, which is a painful inflammation of the appendix. Appendicitis is a common condition, but if left untreated, the swollen appendix may burst and lead to further health complications.
Here are the symptoms of appendicitis:
- Feeling sick
- Poor appetite
- Flushed face