Abdominal pain (AP) is one of the commonest reasons for admission to emergency departments (ED) and other healthcare institutions. Considering the singular ‘chief’ main complaints, it is established that 8% to 10% of patients both in Turkey and in the world are admitted to the ED with AP.
The term "stomachache" seems to be justified as the difficulty of diagnosis in patients presenting with AP is a real challenge for physicians. Delay in diagnosis and misdiagnosis is a common problem even for the most experienced emergency physician or general surgeon. Disruptions that may be related to ancillary services such as radiology and biochemistry also increase the difficulty.
In an ideal world, the physician examines the patient and reduces the differential diagnosis list to a single one possible entity, which we call a ‘diagnosis’, even if it is not yet verified by pathological examination. However, the real life does not operate like this. Age, gender, ethnicity, previous experiences, accompanying psychiatric problems and socioeconomic status affect the way the patient describes pain. In most clinical scenarios, a definitive diagnosis can be availed quickly after an elaborate history and examination, by performing targeted biochemistry and focused radiological examinations, as prompted by the clinical findings.
In cases presenting with acute AP, the emergency physician should relieve the pain expediently after evaluating and recording the initial vital signs and findings on systemic examination. There are no contraindications for cessation of pain in a patient with pain.
Briefly, diagnosis and management of the patient with abdominal pain entails both an individualized approach tailored for the patient and also general working knowledge for specific entities in the list of possible diagnoses.
Abdominal Pain: Essential Diagnosis and Management in Acute Medicine is a definitive diagnosis guide that serves as a quick reference that supplements medical examinations. It gives physicians involved in a range of medical specialties (emergency medicine, family medicine, gastroenterology, general surgery) an understanding of how to apply procedures to expediently relieve pain where possible, after evaluating and recording the initial vital signs and findings on systemic examination.
Key Features - Covers abdominal pain diagnosis and patient management patient in a systematic and structured manner in 12 chapters - Chapters are dedicated to specific topics - Presents an individualized approach tailored for the patient to address common problems - Gives general working knowledge for specific diseases in the list of possible diagnoses - Provides a guide to situations involving trauma and surgery.
About the editor:
Ozgur Karcioglu is M.D. Professor in Emergency Medicine at Taksim Training and Research Hospital in Dept. of Emergency Medicine, Beyoglu, Istanbul, Turkey.
Abdominal pain, gastrointestinal bleeding, Acute gastroenteritis, cirrhosis, Physical examination, Hernias, Laboratory investigations, Familial Mediterranean fever, Differential diagnosis, Liver diseases, cost-effectiveness, Biliary Tract diseases, imaging principles, Acute cholecystitis, peptic ulcer disease, Pancreatitis, Gastric/duodenal ulcer perforation, Acute appendicitis, Ingested foreign bodies, anorectic diseases.
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