When is a complete physical exam indicated in the evaluation of systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS)?

Updated: May 07, 2018
  • Author: Lewis J Kaplan, MD, FACS, FCCM, FCCP; Chief Editor: Michael R Pinsky, MD, CM, Dr(HC), FCCP, FAPS, MCCM  more...
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Answer

A focused physical examination based on a patient's symptoms is adequate in most situations. Under certain circumstances, if no obvious etiology is obtained during the history or laboratory evaluation, a complete physical examination may be indicated. Patients who cannot provide any history should also undergo a complete physical examination, including a rectal examination, to rule out an abscess or gastrointestinal bleeding.


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