Mesenteric Lymphadenitis

  • Author :
  • TATA AIG Team
  • Published on :
  • 31/07/2023

The inflammation of lymph nodes is known as lymphadenitis. Lymph nodes are critical to the body's immune system since they store white blood cells. A pathogen infection cause swelling of lymph nodes and pain and increase white blood cells. In mesenteric lymphadenitis, lymph nodes in the abdominal area (belly) are inflamed (swelled). The symptoms are abdominal pain, nausea, and diarrhoea. Medications for pain and rest soothe signs.

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What is Mesenteric Lymphadenitis?

  • An inflammation (swelling) of the lymph nodes in the abdomen (belly) is called mesenteric lymphadenitis.

  • Your body's lymph nodes are immune system organs. They prevent bacteria and viruses from spreading throughout your body by filtering them.

  • Usually, lymph nodes are about the size of a pea, but when inflamed, they can become much more significant and tender.

  • Mesentery inflammation refers to inflammation that occurs in the fold of the membrane that connects your bowel to your abdominal wall called the mesentery.

  • Children and teenagers are more likely to contract mesenteric lymphadenitis. Most adults and people over the age of 20 years do not get it.

  • It is rare to develop mesenteric lymphadenitis. Since many cases resolve independently, it is difficult to determine the exact rate of occurrence.

Mesenteric Lymphadenitis Symptoms

Lymphadenitis of the mesenteric region can cause various symptoms. Like appendicitis, mesenteric lymphadenitis can present with the following symptoms:

  • Often on the right lower side of the stomach, abdominal pain.

  • A feeling of tenderness in the abdomen.

  • Nausea or vomiting.

  • Fever.

  • Diarrhoea.

There may be pain in the abdomen because of enlarged lymph nodes. An infection can cause diarrhoea and nausea in the intestinal tract.

Mesenteric Lymphadenitis Causes

Mesenteric lymphadenitis occurs when lymph nodes in the abdomen swell (inflamed). Lymph nodes can swell as a result of an infection or as a result of an inflammatory condition.

1. Infections

  • Infections by viruses or bacteria usually cause mesenteric lymphadenitis. Among the diseases that can cause mesenteric lymphadenitis are:

  • It is also known as stomach flu or gastroenteritis.

  • Undercooked meat contains Yersinia enterocolitica bacteria.

  • HIV-related infection.

  • Tuberculosis.

2. Inflammatory conditions

Your child's abdominal lymph nodes can become inflamed due to another condition that causes swelling in another part of the body, such as:

  • Appendicitis.

  • Cancers (gastrointestinal cancer, lymphoma).

  • Diverticulitis.

  • Pancreatitis.

  • Inflammatory bowel disease.

A virus may cause mesenteric lymphadenitis, and the virus itself may be contagious.

Mesenteric Lymphadenitis - Diagnosis and Tests

  • Your child's healthcare provider will perform a physical exam and review your child's medical history to diagnose mesenteric lymphadenitis.

  • The doctor will also ask how long your child's symptoms have been present and if they have been sick recently.

  • The doctor may even recommend blood tests, such as the complete blood count (CBC).

  • Symptoms of mesenteric lymphadenitis (inflamed appendix) are like those of appendicitis (inflamed appendix) due to the large number of lymph nodes in the right lower abdomen.

  • To rule out appendicitis, a medical emergency, your provider may perform imaging tests, such as an ultrasound or CT scan.

Mesenteric Lymphadenitis Treatment

Without treatment, most children with mesenteric lymphadenitis recover within one to four weeks. After recovery, the condition has no lasting effects. You can manage the symptoms of mesenteric lymphadenitis with medications prescribed by your child's healthcare provider. The doctor will prescribe antibiotics if your child has a bacterial infection.

Symptoms of mesenteric lymphadenitis can also be managed by:

  • Taking enough rest.

  • Staying hydrated after vomiting or diarrhoea requires drinking water.

  • Using a heating pad to apply heat to the abdomen.

  • Taking pain relievers over-the-counter as prescribed by your physician.

Mesenteric Lymphadenitis - How to Prevent It?

Among the ways you can lower your risk of developing mesenteric lymphadenitis due to infection are:

  • Regularly washing your hands will keep them clean.

  • It is best to avoid close contact with sick people.

Mesenteric Lymphadenitis - Dietary Prevention

When preparing your food, you should take the following precautions to prevent the spread of bacteria that cause mesenteric lymphadenitis:

  • Keep your hands clean before touching raw food and afterwards.

  • Maintain a clean food preparation area.

  • Raw foods, especially meat, should be cooked to an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit.

  • For meat and vegetables, you should use different utensils and cutting boards.

  • Drink only treated water, such as water from lakes and ponds or try to purify your water at home.

Mesenteric Lymphadenitis: What Does One Experience?

It is common for your child to experience mild pain in their abdomen or lower right side if they suffer from mesenteric lymphadenitis. Symptoms of the flu and feeling unwell can accompany this pain. If your child has stomach pain, they may benefit from a heating pad or warm compress.

  • Your provider may prescribe medications if they are suffering from severe pain.

  • Your child needs to rest as much as possible during their illness.

  • Your child must stay hydrated and eat light meals even when nauseous or diarrhoea occurs.

Increasing medical expenses may require you to purchase a medical insurance plan. A health insurance plan can help cover the cost of medical services and hospitalisation. With Tata AIG's health insurance, you can enjoy various benefits of health insurance, such as cashless facilities, pre- and post-hospitalisation benefits, and tax deductions, apart from securing yourself and your family against the impact of different illnesses and ailments.


The pain and discomfort of mesenteric lymphadenitis in children will pass over time. Even if your child does not feel up to eating a full meal, make sure they get enough nutrients and water. An official diagnosis to determine if emergency treatment is needed is crucial, even though the condition is self-resolving.

The symptoms of mesenteric lymphadenitis in adults over 20 years may be associated with appendicitis instead of mesenteric lymphadenitis, so contact your healthcare provider immediately.

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