Abdominal distention

Background

  • Defined as: diffuse swelling or enlargement of the abdomen.
    • It can also apply to the sensation of elevated abdominal pressure and volume.

Clinical Features

Ascites secondary to cirrhosis.
  • Diffuse swelling or enlargement of the abdomen (or the sensation of such)

Differential Diagnosis

Abdominal distention

Evaluation

  • May be obvious on physical exam (e.g. obesity)
  • Consider ultrasound as a first test (e.g. obesity vs. ascites)
  • If unsure, consider CT abdomen

Management

  • Depends on underlying etiology.

Disposition

  • Depends on underlying etiology.

See Also

External Links

References