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Abdominal distension


Abdominal distension occurs when substances, such as air or fluid, accumulate in the abdomen causing its outward expansion beyond the normal girth of the stomach and waist. It is typically a symptom of an underlying disease or dysfunction in the body, rather than an illness in its own right. People suffering from this condition often describe it as "feeling bloated." Sufferers often experience a sensation of fullness, abdominal pressure and possibly nausea, pain or cramping. In the most extreme cases, upward pressure on the diaphram and lungs can also cause shortness of breath. Through a variety of causes, bloating is most commonly due to buildup of gas in the stomach, small intestine or colon. The pressure sensation is often relieved, or at least lessened, by burping or passing gas. Medications that settle gas in the stomach and intestines are also commonly used to treat the discomfort and lessen the abdominal distension.

  • also known as Swelling abdomen, Abdomen distended, Distended abdomen, Swollen abdomen, Swollen belly

Printed dictionaries and other books with definitions for Abdominal distension

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Google previewDifferential Diagnosis (2005)

by Gupta

Abdominal distension is a late symptom. Visible peristalsis may be noted. Acute Intussusception Healthy child suddenly starts screaming. Attack is intermittent followed by vomiting. Absolute constipation is replaced by passage of mucus and ...

Google previewPediatric Nursing by Parul Datta (2007)

by Jaypee Brothers, Medical Publishers

Abdominal distension is a common problem usually associated with intestinal obstruction and infections. It occurs when abdomen stretched out or inflated with air, gas and secretion and needs immediate attention.

Google previewACCCN's Critical Care Nursing (2011)

by Doug Elliott, Leanne Aitken, Wendy Chaboyer

Abdominal distension is a less reliable sign in children, as distension may be from air that is swallowed from pain and crying. However, as in adults, the primary survey may not include the abdomen if other immediately lifethreatening injuries ...

Google previewGuess What Came to Dinner? (2001)

Parasites and Your Health by Ann Louise Gittleman Ph.D., CNS

Persistent abdominal distension is a frequent sign of hidden invaders. These gastrointestinal symptoms can persist intermittently ...

Google previewNancy Caroline's Emergency Care in the Streets, Canadian Edition (2011)

by Nancy L. Caroline

Abdominal distension is a late indication of abdominal trauma. Patients must have a significant volume of blood enter the abdominal cavity to fill it and produce distension. Try to obtain as many details about an injury as possible, keeping in ...

Google previewAvery's Neonatology (2005)

Pathophysiology & Management of the Newborn by Mhairi G. MacDonald, Mary M. K. Seshia, Martha D. Mullett

Abdominal distension is a common early finding. Hematest-positive stools help confirm the diagnosis, but blood may be absent or a late finding. Abdominal wall erythema and a palpable abdominal mass are commonly late findings and signify ...

Google previewHodson and Geddes' Cystic Fibrosis, Fourth Edition (2015)

by Andrew Bush, Diana Bilton, Margaret Hodson

Abdominal distension is an uncommon problem, which is generally related to patient-ventilator synchrony. This side effect can be corrected ...

Google previewSynopsis of Pediatric Emergency Medicine (2002)

by Gary Robert Fleisher, Stephen Ludwig, Benjamin K. Silverman

DIFFERENTIAL DIAGNOSIS Abdominal distension is a nonspecific sign (Table 6.1); common causes are listed in Table 6.2 and life-threatening etiologies in Table 6.3. Bowel distension occurs secondary to mechanical or functional intestinal ...

Google previewHirschsprung's Disease and Allied Disorders (2007)

by Alexander Matthias Holschneider, Prem Puri

Abdominal distension is a constant and early finding; other symptoms include bile-stained vomiting and absent or decreased bowel sounds. A distended, nonobstructed urinary bladder can be relieved by catheterization. Of 182 infants, 61 had ...

Google previewMosby's Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing and Health Professions - Australian & New Zealand Edition (2014)

by Peter Harris, Sue Nagy, Nicholas Vardaxis

The patient with obstruction experiences abdominal distension, pain, nausea, and vomiting. Surgery may be required. See also adhesion. abdominal aorta, the portion of the descending aorta that passes from the aortic hiatus of the diaphragm ...

Google previewEncyclopedia of Food and Health (2015)

Caloric restriction, anorexia Lung and peripheral edemas, ascites, High carbohydrate intake, protein Vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal distension, anorexia, ...

Google previewThe Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine Third Edition (2012)

by Michael T. Murray, Joseph Pizzorno

Abdominal distension, relief of pain with bowel movements, and the onset of loose or more frequent bowel movements with pain seem to correlate best with the diagnosis ofIBS. CONDITIONS THAT MIMIC IRRITABLE BOWEL SYNDROME ...

Google previewAcupoint Dictionary (2009)

by David Hartmann

Abdominal distension Heartburn ST 21, ST 44, Acid reflux Vomiting CV ...

Google previewEncyclopedia of Applied Developmental Science (2004)

by Celia B Fisher, Richard M. Lerner

Symptoms in children can include malodorous, bulky, pale-colored stools, diarrhea, growth retardation, weight loss, anorexia, poor appetite, irritability, abdominal discomfort, abdominal distension, or emesis (vomiting). Symptoms in adults can ...

Google previewEncyclopedia of Cancer and Society (2007)

by Graham A. Colditz

abdominal distension, and itching. Early cancer may not show any symptoms and could be an incidental finding. An important issue that arises with gallbladder ...

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