Is the Appendix an Unnecessary Organ?

Many people think that the appendix is an unnecessary part of the body. According to the famous evolutionist Charles Darwin, the appendix is a useless organ that sometimes leads to death. But with the development of modern science, this idea has been proven wrong.

A small part of the digestive system, this appendix is quite important to the human body. Loren Martin, a professor of physiology at Oklahoma State University in the US, has discovered specific functions of the appendix both during the mother’s womb and in adulthood.

Certain cells in the appendix help maintain body position and balance in the fetus. Some immune cells begin to develop in the appendix soon after birth. Here, some immune cells become mature, producing antibodies.

They fight the harmful bacteria that enter our stomachs through food. It also helps to send immune cells to different parts of the body. It also alleviates some processes that are harmful to our body.

The appendix is a useful organ for adults as well. This organ acts as a safe haven for beneficial bacteria. Immune cells in the appendix stimulate the growth of these beneficial bacteria and supply beneficial bacteria to the digestive tract. These beneficial bacteria in the appendix help in the absorption of many nutrients and prevent intestinal infections by other harmful bacteria.

Diarrhea causes beneficial bacteria from other parts of the intestine to leave the body, but the beneficial bacteria remain intact due to their protected location in the appendix. Again, it spreads in the digestive system and has a positive effect.

Studies have shown that the risk of intestinal infection increases after appendectomy. People who have their appendix removed have a nearly four-fold increased risk of developing the deadly disease pseudomembranous colitis! Apart from this, the risk of heart attacks and diseases caused by the negative effects of the body’s immune system also increases.

 Nowadays, surgeons also use the appendix in various reconstructive surgeries.  such as special operations on the urinary bladder.

In today’s scientific age, therefore, it is unscientific to call the appendix unimportant, unstructured, and ineffective. “I think it’s time to stop calling the appendix a passive organ,” said Keith Johnson, an evolutionary researcher. Researchers should conduct further studies to explore the role of the appendix in the human body.

Dr. Md. Delwar Hossain, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University

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