Why do you have to have your spleen removed? I mean, your spleen has done nothing but amazing things for your body, fighting infection and filtering your blood. Why the eviction notice for such a loyal organ, huh? The spleen is the organ most likely to be injured and removed in a car accident, during sports or other trauma to the belly area.
Splenectomy, the surgery where the spleen is removed, keeps a ruptured or damaged spleen from spilling its bloody guts onto neighboring organs. Since you can live without this organ, sometimes they yank it out to save you the hassle of bleeding into your body cavity and sepsis.
What does the spleen do, anyway? Your spleen keeps your blood clean! This organ battles disease in the bloodstream so you don't have to. This queen of clean serves as your primary blood filter and largest lymph organ. It brings blood into contact with lymphocytes, which happily attack foreign bodies, and cleans worn-out red and white blood cells. Go spleen!
What is mono and why does it hurt my poor spleen? Mononucleosis is an infectious virus also known as the "kissing disease." Aww, so cute. The virus that causes mono is called Epstein-Barr, and this virus can cause your spleen to enlarge. Your spleen is just fine the size it is, thank you very much, and knows that size doesn't matter.
What else can happen to your spleen? The three top spleen diseases and probs include splenomegaly (fancy word for enlarged spleen), hypersplenism (when the spleen overdoes it and removes too many blood cells) and splenic rupture (busted spleen). Hypersplenism is actually caused by problems in the liver, but the spleen gets all the blame. It's not fair!
Where is the spleen located in the body? It's on the left side of the upper abdomen. If you have any spleen pain, you should visit your doctor STAT. Sadly, you may leave the hospital without your actual spleen, so get ready to wear a cute silly spleen shirt.
What do I give someone after spleen surgery? Well, we are biased, but we think we have the best and funniest spleen surgery gifts. Stuff a spleen plushie, spleen pins and other spleeny treats for your post-op surgery gift basket!