Chamberlain College of Nursing
NR305: Health Assessment
Assessment of the patient with acute abdominal pain
Assessment of the patient with acute abdominal pain is an article published in the Nursing Standard Journal in the June 2006 issue, written by Elaine Cole, Antonia Lynch, and Helen Cugnoni. This article gives an in depth look at common diagnosis associated with abdominal pain. With each diagnosis the article gives common statistics such as occurrence, need for urgent treatment or emergent surgery. It provides a detailed list of signs and symptoms for each diagnosis as well as what test or procedure that needs to be performed to diagnose each. The article provides very useful information on the nursing care that patients with abdominal pain may require. Summary of Article
It is very hard to determine the cause of abdominal pain because of the multiplicity of signs and symptoms and all people describe pain differently. It is very important to take a good medical history as this can provide 70 per cent or more of the clues that may lead to the diagnosis. A nurse must familiarize themselves with the anatomy of abdomen. The organs located in the abdomen are: the stomach, spleen, liver, gall bladder, pancreas, kidneys, small intestine and large intestine. The organs in the pelvis are: the bladder, caecum, appendix, sigmoid colon, rectum and female reproductive organs. (Cole, Lynch, & Cugnoni, 2006).
It is very important for the nurse to also learn the location of each organ, as this will help pin point what actually may be causing the abdominal pain. The right lobe of the liver, duodenum, head of pancreas, gall bladder, and sections of the ascending and transverse colon are located in the right upper quadrant of the abdomen. The left lobe of the liver, spleen, body of pancreas, stomach and sections of the descending and transverse colon, are...