Turkish Journal of Geriatrics 2005 , Vol 8, Issue 3
Polat DURUKAN, Yunsur ÇEVİK, Mustafa YILDIZ
Fırat Üniversitesi Tıp Fakültesi Acil Tıp Anabilim Dalı ELAZIĞ Background: Knowledge about emergency department (ED) admissions of geriatric patients due to abdominal pain is limited. Altered anatomic structures, atypical symptom and physical examination findings may cause diagnostic mistake. Delay of diagnosis and treatmentin ED may cause increased morbidity and mortality.

Patients and Methods: This study was performed retrospectivelly by searching files of patients older than 65 years admitted to ED of Firat University Faculty of Medicine due to abdominal pain between January-December 2003.

Results: The study was performed with 106 patients. Male/female ratio is 0.82. In study period 13.3% of whole ED visits and 13.5% of ED visits due to abdominal pain were made by patients older than 65 years. Mean admission time after start of pain was 97.10±160.8 hours. The most common accompanying symptoms were nausea and vomiting. Acute cholecystitis and/or cholelithiasis detected in 24 ED patients (22.6%) were the most common pathology. 63.2% of the patients were hospitalized and 47.8% of these were operated. Mortality rate was 11.9%.

Conclusion: Incidence of surgical causes in these patients is rather high. Because atypical presentation is frequent; care must be taken to extensive history, careful physical examination and effective use of imaging methods and early general surgery consultation must be considered. Keywords : Emergency department, Geriatric patients, Abdominal pain