Abdomen, acute: Medical shorthand for the acute onset of abdominal pain. A potential medical emergency, an acute abdomen may reflect a major problem with one of the organs in the abdomen, such as appendicitis (inflamed appendix), cholecystitis (inflamed gallbladder), a perforated ulcer in the intestine, or a ruptured spleen.
Quick GuideDigestive Disorders: Common Misconceptions
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Last Editorial Review: 6/9/2016