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Mesenteric adenitis is a mild condition which causes temporary pain in the abdomen (tummy) usually in children . It clears up without treatment. Sometimes mesenteric adenitis is difficult to diagnose and it will be difficult to distinguish from other cause of abdominal pain such as apendicities.

It means inflamed lymph glands in the abdomen , which cause abdominal pain. It is not very serious and get better without treatment. It is very commonly seen in children around 16 yrs , but it is not commonly seen in adults.


Infection through a germ that triggers the inflammation and swelling of the lymph glands . Mostly it is due to a virus infection such as cold or sore throat . Even it can also be caused due to bacterial infecftion .example, a bacterial infection in the intestine(gut). This inflamed glands trends to cause pain , tenderness and high temperature.


These are some common symptoms of mesenteric adenitis.

  1. pain in the abdomen(tummy). The pain is located in the centre of the abdomen opr in the lower right hand side of the abdomen ( right illac fossa).

  2. fever and generally feeling unwell.

  3. nausea and diarrhea is seen in some people .

  4. sore throat or symptoms of cold before we tends to feel pain in the abdomen.


It is diagnosed from the symptoms and by physical examination by the doctor .If common typical symptoms and there are no signs of other causes of pain, it may likely to be seen as mesenteric adenitis. It is difficult to actually prove the diagnosis. Because the glands present deep in the abdomen and difficult to be seen.

In mesenteric adenitis it can imitate the other causes of abdominal pain such as,

  1. apendicitis.

  2. etopic pregnancy.

If the diagnosis are not clear , doctors suggest the following:

  1. a period of observation with a review after few hours to see if symptoms have changed.

  2. a referral to hospital for surgeon's opinion.

  3. tests to be done to know other conditions.


There are no specific tests for mesenteric adenitis, however some tests help to diagnose other conditions which can cause pain . The tests required to be done are:

  1. blood tests.

  2. urine tests for infection

  3. scanning tests like CT-SCAN , ULTRASOUND are need to be done.

  4. Complete blood count:

    a small amount of blood is taken and tested to know the amount of haemoglobin, number of white and red blood cells .


    A small amount if urine is collected . The sample is analyzed under the microscope to know the presence of any infectious microbes.


    A probe is kept over the abdomen that sends sound waves into the abdomen. The sound wavers rerflected from the tissues are collected by the ultrasound and form the images of the organs. Other conditions such as apendicitis can also be diagnosed as they can cause abdomen pain even along with mesentric adenitis.

  7. Laparoscopy:

    it is a thin tube which has a camera at the tip . This is inserted into the abdomen through a small cut and the view inside the abdomen is seen on a T V monitor. It helps to confirm adenitis and also other conditions which can cause abdominal pain.


The medical treatment is given to relieve and to cure the infection.

  1. one should take adequate rest till the symptoms resolve.
  2. the affected person or the child should take plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration.


Antipyretics such as paracetamol may be given to reduce fever.

Pain killers such as ibuprofen reduce abdominal pain.

Antibiotics may be given to kill if there is a bacterial infection. Treating reduces the swelling and infection of the lymph glands.


In most cases symptoms resolve within two weeks. Mesenteric adenitis is commonly associated with diarrhea, loss of excess fluids in the feces may cause dehydration . Severe dehydration in children leads to death. Sometimes the infection may spread to the blood and cause sepsis which leads to high fever, blood pressure and shock.

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