Peritonitis is usually infectious and often life-threatening. It's caused by leakage or perforation in the abdomen, such as a perforated appendix. Even if the fluid is sterile, inflammation can occur.
Symptoms usually include pain, tenderness, rigid abdominal muscles, fever, nausea, and vomiting.
Antibiotics are almost always needed, along with surgery or drainage.
Last Updated Jun 13, 2017