Should listen for bowel sounds?

A study of clinicians ranging from medical students to attending physicians found that many report never listening to bowel sounds. Then when the authors played recorded bowel sounds from actual patients, the clinicians could not distinguish normal controls, mechanical small bowel obstructions, or postoperative ileus.

Reference

Felder S, Margel D, Murrell Z, & Fleshner P (2014). Usefulness of bowel sound auscultation: a prospective evaluation. Journal of surgical education, 71 (5), 768-73 PMID: 24776861

 

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