Abdominal Pain (Children) - 3-1
Abdominal pain is a common complaint in children. While the symptoms may result from serious abdominal pathology, in a large proportion of cases, an identifiable organic cause is not found. The causes are often age dependent.
- Lower abdominal
- Mesenteric lymphadenitis
- Inflammatory bowel disease
- Inguinal hernia (incarcerated)
- Urinary tract infection
- Gynecological cause in pubertal children
- Generalized pain
- Peritoneal inflammation
- Infantile colic
- Irritable bowel syndrome
- Flank pain
- Kidney stones
- Periumbilical recurrent abdominal pain
- Epigastric pain
- Gastroesophageal reflux
- Peptic ulcer
- Biliary tract disease
In particular, the candidate will distinguish those patients requiring emergency medical and/or surgical treatment, recognizing that a non-organic cause is the most common etiology for the symptoms.
Given a pediatric patient with abdominal pain, the candidate will
- list and interpret critical findings, including those derived from
- a. the identification of causes of abdominal pain requiring surgery (this requires particular attention to a thorough physical examination aimed at findings suggestive of peritonitis);
- b. the differentiation of all possible psychological causes or psychosocial circumstances in case of chronic abdominal pain;
- c. the differentiation between organic pain and infantile colic;
- list and interpret critical investigations, including
- laboratory investigations and diagnostic imaging;
- construct an effective initial management plan, including
- determining whether emergency surgical or medical care is required;
- outlining the initial plan of management in case of acute intestinal obstruction;
- outlining a plan of management for common causes of abdominal pain based on age;
- determining whether specialized care and/or further investigations are required.
- determining whether psychosocial issues need to be addressed.