What does abdominal distention, masses, or hernia indicate in the physical exam for constipation?

Updated: Mar 30, 2020
  • Author: Marc D Basson, MD, PhD, MBA, FACS; Chief Editor: BS Anand, MD  more...
  • Print

Abdominal distention or masses may indicate the presence of colonic stools or tumors. Large abdominal wall hernias, especially ventral hernias, may interfere with generation of the intra-abdominal pressure required for the initiation of defecation. Rarely, a left-sided sliding inguinal hernia with an incarcerated sigmoid colon may cause difficulties in bowel movements.

Did this answer your question?
Additional feedback? (Optional)
Thank you for your feedback!