How is abdominal distention characterized in sigmoid and cecal volvulus?

Updated: Nov 28, 2018
  • Author: Scott C Thornton, MD; Chief Editor: John Geibel, MD, DSc, MSc, AGAF  more...
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Answer

Abdominal distention is commonly massive and characteristically tympanitic over the gas-filled, thin-walled colon loop. Overlying or rebound tenderness raises the concern of peritonitis due to ischemic or perforated bowel. The patient may have a history of episodes of acute volvulus that spontaneously resolved; in such circumstances, marked abdominal distention with minimal tenderness may occur.


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