Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

Overview Underlying Cause Types Anatomy

Abdominal Tenderness Overview

What is abdominal tenderness?
Abdominal tenderness is an important finding on physical examination in a person who complains of abdominal pain. A person with abdominal tenderness has abdominal pain when pressure is applied to the abdomen (with the hand). Tenderness that is located in one area of the abdomen can provide an important clue to the underlying cause. Many conditions cause abdominal pain, but few conditions also cause abdominal tenderness.

What are the symptoms of abdominal tenderness?
Abdominal tenderness can range from mild to severe. Symptoms commonly associated with abdominal tenderness include abdominal pain, abdominal swelling, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, fever, anorexia, and excessive sweating.

How does the doctor treat abdominal tenderness?
Treatment of abdominal tenderness depends on the underlying cause. Severe abdominal tenderness is often treated with antibiotics and surgery.

Continue to Abdominal Tenderness Underlying Cause

Last Updated: Feb 3, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Abdominal Tenderness References
  1. Bundy DG, Byerley JS, Liles EA, Perrin EM, Katznelson J, Rice HE. Does this child have appendicitis? JAMA. 2007 Jul 25;298(4):438-51. [17652298]
  2. Flasar MH, Goldberg E. Med Clin North Am. 2006 May;90(3):481-503. [16473101]
  3. Lyon C, Clark DC. Diagnosis of acute abdominal pain in older patients. Am Fam Physician. 2006 Nov 1;74(9):1537-44. [17111893]
  4. McCollough M, Sharieff GQ. Abdominal pain in children. Pediatr Clin North Am. 2006 Feb;53(1):107-37, vi. [16487787]
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