Imaging and laboratory testing in acute abdominal pain

Emerg Med Clin North Am. 2011 May;29(2):175-93, vii. doi: 10.1016/j.emc.2011.01.010.


When discussing which laboratory tests or imaging to order in the setting of acute abdominal pain, it is practical to organize information by disease process (eg, acute appendicitis, cholecystitis). Because studies on the accuracy of diagnostic tests are of necessity related to the presence or absence of specific diagnoses, and because clinicians frequently look to tests to help them rule in or rule out specific conditions, this article is organized by region of pain and common abdominal diagnoses. It focuses on the contributions that laboratory testing and imaging make in the emergency management of abdominal complaints.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Abdominal Pain / diagnosis*
  • Acute Disease
  • Clinical Laboratory Techniques*
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Diagnostic Imaging / methods*
  • Humans