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Year : 2014  |  Volume : 55  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 266-270

Pattern and presentation of acute abdomen in a Nigerian teaching hospital

1 Department of Surgery, University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital, Ilorin, Kwara; Surgery, Ekiti State University Teaching Hospital, Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti, Nigeria
2 Department of Surgery, Ekiti State University Teaching Hospital, Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
John Owoade Agboola
Department of Surgery, Ekiti State University Teaching Hospital, Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0300-1652.132068

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Background: Abdominal pain of sudden onset is the hallmark of most non-traumatic emergency surgical presentations. This presents a scenario of urgency to the young surgeon who has to determine which of a myriad of disease conditions the patient is presenting with. Such a physician has to rely on experience and a sound knowledge of the local aetiological spectrum in making a clinical diagnosis. Objective: To determine the epidemiology and aetiological spectrum of diseases presenting as acute abdomen in the adult population at the hospital surgical emergency unit. Patients and Methods: Two hundred and seventy-six patients presenting at the University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital emergency unit and managed by the general surgeons between 1 st of May 2009 and 30 th of April 2010 were recruited and followed-up throughout the period of admission. The biodata and clinical information inclusive of diagnosis, investigations, treatment modality and outcome were entered in a structured questioner. Standardised treatment was given to all patients and difficulties encountered in their management were also noted. The data collected was evaluated using SPSS16. Results: Acute abdomen constituted 9.6% of total surgical emergency admissions with patients aged 16-45 years constituting 78.3%. The commonest cause of acute abdomen was appendicitis (30.3%) followed by intestinal obstruction (27.9%), perforated typhoid ileitis 14.9% and peptic ulcer disease (7.6%), respectively. Conclusion: The result from the study is similar to what has been reported in other tropical settings with inflammatory lesions being the major problem. There is also a rising incidence of post-operative adhesions and gradual decline in incidence of obstructed hernia.

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