Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Speed bumps could be a new way to help diagnose appendicitis

Date:
December 17, 2012
Source:
BMJ-British Medical Journal
Summary:
The presence of pain when travelling over speed bumps is associated with an increased likelihood of acute appendicitis, among patients coming into hospital with abdominal pain, finds a new study.

The presence of pain when travelling over speed bumps is associated with an increased likelihood of acute appendicitis, among patients coming into hospital with abdominal pain, finds a study in the BMJ Christmas issue and published online December 17.

Clinical diagnosis of acute appendicitis can be difficult and yet it is the most common surgical abdominal emergency. There is no specific clinical diagnostic test for appendicitis, and removing a healthy appendix -- which happens often -- is best avoided. Similarly, missing appendicitis when it's present can be dangerous.

Although some doctors have routinely asked about pain travelling over speed bumps, this practice was not previously evidence-based.

Researchers from the University of Oxford and Stoke Mandeville Hospital therefore carried out a study on 101 patients who were referred to hospital for suspected appendicitis. Testing took place in 2012 and patients were between 17 and 76 years of age.

Patients were classed as "speed bump positive" if they had a worsening of pain whilst travelling over speed bumps or "speed bump negative" if their pain stayed the same, if they were unsure, or if their pain improved. All participants were questioned within 24 hours of their journey to hospital.

Sixty-four patients had travelled over speed bumps on their way to hospital. 54 of these (84%) were "speed bump positive." 34 of the 64 had a confirmed diagnosis of acute appendicitis of which 33 (97%) had worsened pain over speed bumps.

Seven patients who were "speed bump positive" did not have appendicitis but did have other significant problems such as ruptured ovarian cyst or diverticulitis (bulging sacs or pouches most commonly found in the large intestine).

Clinical questioning about pain over speed bumps also compared favourably with the well known signs of appendicitis.

The researchers conclude that an increase in pain over speed bumps is associated with an increased likelihood of acute appendicitis. They add that although being "speed bump positive" does not guarantee a diagnosis of appendicitis, the study does suggest that it should form a routine part of assessment of patients with possible appendicitis.

Dr Helen Ashdown of the Department of Primary Care Health Sciences at the University of Oxford said: "It may sound odd, but asking patients whether their pain worsened going over speed bumps on their way in to hospital could help doctors in a diagnosis. It turns out to be as good as many other ways of assessing people with suspected appendicitis."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by BMJ-British Medical Journal. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. H. F. Ashdown, N. D'Souza, D. Karim, R. J. Stevens, A. Huang, A. Harnden. Pain over speed bumps in diagnosis of acute appendicitis: diagnostic accuracy study. BMJ, 2012; 345 (dec14 14): e8012 DOI: 10.1136/bmj.e8012

Cite This Page:

BMJ-British Medical Journal. "Speed bumps could be a new way to help diagnose appendicitis." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 17 December 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/12/121217190643.htm>.
BMJ-British Medical Journal. (2012, December 17). Speed bumps could be a new way to help diagnose appendicitis. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/12/121217190643.htm
BMJ-British Medical Journal. "Speed bumps could be a new way to help diagnose appendicitis." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/12/121217190643.htm (accessed July 22, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

TheStreet (July 21, 2014) New research shows Gilead Science's drug Sovaldi helps in curing hepatitis C in those who suffer from HIV. In a medical study, the combination of Gilead's Hep C drug with anti-viral drug Ribavirin cured 76% of HIV-positive patients suffering from the most common hepatitis C strain. Hepatitis C and related complications have been a top cause of death in HIV-positive patients. Typical medication used to treat the disease, including interferon proteins, tended to react badly with HIV drugs. However, Sovaldi's %1,000-a-pill price tag could limit the number of patients able to access the treatment. TheStreet's Keris Lahiff reports from New York. Video provided by TheStreet
Powered by NewsLook.com
$23.6 Billion Awarded To Widow In Smoking Lawsuit

$23.6 Billion Awarded To Widow In Smoking Lawsuit

Newsy (July 20, 2014) Cynthia Robinson claims R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company hid the health and addiction risks of its products, leading to the death of her husband in 1996. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Tooth Plaque Provides Insight Into Diets Of Ancient People

Tooth Plaque Provides Insight Into Diets Of Ancient People

Newsy (July 19, 2014) Research on plaque from ancient teeth shows that our prehistoric ancestor's had a detailed understanding of plants long before developing agriculture. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Contaminated Water Kills 3 Babies in South African Town

Contaminated Water Kills 3 Babies in South African Town

AFP (July 18, 2014) Contaminated water in South Africa's northwestern town of Bloemhof kills three babies and hospitalises over 500 people. The incident highlights growing fears over water safety in South Africa. Duration: 02:22 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins