‘Assessment of the patient with acute abdominal pain’ is an article published in Standard Nursing in 2006, written by Elaine Cole, Antonia Lynch, and Helen Cugnoni. In this article, Elaine Cole, Antonia Lynch, and Helen Cugnoni provide an overview of how nurses can thoroughly perform an assessment of abdominal pain in adults. For this reason, it is important that nurses obtain an accurate comprehensive patient history and assessment. This article also provides an overview of the anatomy and physiology of the abdomen, the various causes associated, and vital questions to properly perform an assessment of the abdominal pain. Summary of Article
Abdominal pain is the one of the most common reasons that people seek help for medical care (Cole, Lynch, & Cugnoni, 2006). The abdomen is the largest cavity in the body and contains many organs and structures. The abdomen consists of the stomach, liver, spleen, gallbladder, pancreas, kidneys, small intestine, and large intestine. For assessment purposes the abdomen is divided into four quadrants: left upper quadrant, left lower quadrant, right upper quadrant, and right lower quadrant. Abdominal pain has many causes, from simple to complex presentations (Cole et al., 2006). Therefore, it is essential for nurses to understand the anatomy of the abdomen and be able to distinguish between acute and non-acute conditions to provide an effective treatment plan.
According to Cole, Lynch, and Cugnoni (2006), It may be difficult to establish the cause of the abdominal pain because of the diversity of clinical signs and symptoms. A brief description of the common causes of abdominal pain and related symptoms are further discussed. Just to name a few causes, for example, appendicitis is an inflammation of the appendix that often has a colicky pain around the umbilicus or epigastrium; symptoms include vomiting, constipation, loss of appetite, or occasional diarrhea (Cole et al., 2006). Another, cholesystitis...
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