Abdominal cavity: The cavity within the abdomen, the space between the abdominal wall and the spine.
The abdominal cavity is hardly an empty space. It contains a number of crucial organs including the lower part of the esophagus, the stomach, small intestine, colon, rectum, liver, gallbladder, pancreas, spleen, kidneys, and bladder.
Abdominal: Relating to the abdomen, the belly, that part of the body that contains all of the structures between the chest and the pelvis. The abdomen is separated anatomically from the chest by the diaphragm, the powerful muscle spanning the body cavity below the lungs. The abdomen includes a host of organs including the stomach, […]
- Abdominal muscle deficiency syndrome
Abdominal muscle deficiency syndrome: Partial or complete absence of the abdominal muscles so that the outlines of the intestines are visible through the thin, lax, protruding abdominal wall. Also called the “prune belly syndrome.” The full syndrome probably occurs only in males. In addition to the abdominal muscle deficiency, there are genital and urinary abnormalities […]
- Abdominal aortic aneurysm
A balloon-like swelling in the wall of the aorta within the abdomen. This swelling weakens the aorta’s wall and, because of the great volume of blood flowing under high pressure in the aorta, it can rupture. An abdominal aortic aneurysm is monitored by ultrasound. Surgery is often recommended if the aneurysm is more than 5.5 […]
- Abdominal pain
Pain in the belly. Abdominal pain can be acute or chronic. It may reflect a major problem with one of the organs in the abdomen, such as appendicitis or a perforated intestine, or it may result from a fairly minor problem, such as excess buildup of intestinal gas.
- Abdominal guarding
Abdominal guarding: Tensing of the abdominal wall muscles to guard inflamed organs within the abdomen from the pain of pressure upon them. Abdominal guarding is detected when the abdomen is pressed and is an indication that inflammation of the inner abdominal (peritoneal) surface may be present due, for example, to appendicitis or diverticulitis. The tensed […]