Same thing happened to my son 2 1/2 years ago when he was 12. Appendix ruptured. Prior to this, he had abdominal pain for about 2 days. Took him to Doc and they did an x-ray and blood tests. Told us it was gas. Recommended anti-gas medicine. Brought him home and he progressively got worse. I called Doc again and said he was not getting any better. She recommended a rectal suppository. (I read after-the-fact that you NEVER give a rectal suppository if appendicitis is suspected as this will cause the appendix to rupture)
Gave him the suppos, and an hour later he was SO SICK! Vomiting, high fever......(I suspect it had ruptured at this point.)
Took him to ER. Fever was 104.4 degrees.
Had appendectomy. Was at hospital 4 days on IV antibiotics and went home with low-grade temp and oral antibiotics.
8 days later, was SICK all over again. Took him back to DR. He immediately had CT scan and was diagnosed with an abdominal abcess. Was readmitted with high fever and put on IV antibiotics. Got progressively worse over the course of 24 hours. My sister is a registered nurse and she recommended that I get a second opinion. FINALLY, called in a second opinion. (Original surgeon was going to leave him on IV antibiotics "over the weekend" to see how he did) In the meantime, he is being placed on cooling blankets and nothing would bring down his high fever)
Second opinion Doc came in and evaluated him and recommended that drains be put in his abdomen to drain infection a.s.a.p. Put drains in the next day. Was placed on double pediatric dose of morphine (with which he hallucinated while on it.) and in severe pain. BUT, fever did immediately go down and also was put back on IV antibiotics. Second opinion Doc said that fecal material was found in the peritoneom and that is what caused the infection, (abcess). The first surgeon was Pis...ed that we called in another Doctor. Had very poor bedside manner and also conveniently left "fecal material" information out of his report. Hmmmmm................
He spent an additional 15 days there and was sent home on oral antibiotics for which he took for 6 weeks!
Was a nightmarish experience, but I am grateful to report that he is now 14 and doing very well!
My advice to your friend is to be bold and ASK QUESTIONS! Talk to people who are in the medical field. Check the internet for information. Be proactive! Get copies of his medical records, if you need them. Don't let fear get in the way. Remember, this is this child's LIFE!
Best wishes to this child for a speedy recovery.