Abdominal Pain

  • Propose a relevant differential diagnosis for a patient presenting with abdominal pain, based on the history and physical exam findings
  • For patients with acute abdominal pain, propose an initial management plan that includes appropriate and timely referral/investigation for potentially serious causes.
  • For patients with chronic/recurrent abdominal pain, propose a management plan that highlights initial investigations and basic management

Core Resources

Abdominal Pain One-Page Primer

Lam E, Maxted JM. Abdominal Pain One-Page Primer.  DFCM Open.  2013.  Available at: https://dfcmopen.com.  Attribution-NoDerivs CC BY-ND

Evaluation of Acute Abdominal Pain in Adults

Cartwright SL, Knudson MP. Evaluation of Acute Abdominal Pain in Adults. Am Fam Physician. 2008;77(7):971-978.

Irritable Bowel Syndrome One-Page Primer

Cheung L, Nicolle E. Irritable Bowel Syndrome One-Page Primer.  DFCM Open.  2014.  Available at: https://dfcmopen.com.  Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs CC BY-NC-ND

Supplemental Resources

Acute GI-related Abdominal Pain

The Calgary Guide to Understanding Disease. Acute GI-Related Abdominal Pain: Pathogenesis and Characteristics. Published Aug 7, 2012. Available at: http://calgaryguide.ucalgary.ca/

The Diagnosis and Management of IBS in Adults

Wilkins T, Pepitone C, Alex B, Schade RR. Diagnosis and management of IBS in adults. Am Fam Physician. 2012;86(5):419-426. doi: d10520 [pii]

An approach to the care of patients with irritable bowel syndrome

Farmer A, Wood E, and Ruffle J. An approach to the care of patients with irritable bowel syndrome. CMAJ 2020 March 16;192:E275-82. doi: 10.1503/cmaj.190716