As the prevalence of HIV infection continues to increase, EPs will be called upon to evaluate increasing numbers of AIDS patients who have abdominal pain, some of whom will require emergent surgical intervention. In addition to the myriad causes of abdominal pain in the nonimmunocompromised patient, the differential diagnosis in the AIDS patient includes a wide variety of opportunistic infections and neoplasms (Table 5). Evaluation frequently requires extensive laboratory studies and cultures and advanced imaging (CT, ultrasound, and so forth). A low threshold for surgical and other subspecialty consultation should be in place because of the often subtle presentation of surgical emergencies in AIDS patients.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Emergency Medicine