DefinitionBy Mayo Clinic Staff
Peritonitis is inflammation of the peritoneum — a silk-like membrane that lines your inner abdominal wall and covers the organs within your abdomen — that is usually due to a bacterial or fungal infection. Peritonitis can result from any rupture (perforation) in your abdomen, or as a complication of other medical conditions.
Peritonitis requires prompt medical attention to fight the infection and, if necessary, to treat any underlying medical conditions. Treatment of peritonitis usually involves antibiotics and, in some cases, surgery. Left untreated, peritonitis can lead to severe, potentially life-threatening infection throughout your body.
If you're receiving peritoneal dialysis therapy, you can help prevent peritonitis by following good hygiene before, during and after dialysis.
March 31, 2015
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