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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Timely Diagnosis of Pneumoperitoneum by Point-of-care Ultrasound in the Emergency Department: A Case Series


Introduction: Pneumoperitoneum is a life-threatening diagnosis that requires timely diagnosis and action. We present a case series of patients with perforated hollow viscus who were accurately diagnosed by emergency physicians using point-of-care ultrasound (POCUS) while in the emergency department (ED).

Case Series: Three elderly patients presented to the ED with the complaints of syncope, abdominal pain with constipation, and unresponsiveness. The emergency physicians used POCUS to diagnose and then expedite the necessary treatment.

Conclusion: Point-of-care ultrasound can be used by emergency physicians to diagnose pneumoperitoneum in the ED.

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