Abdominal angina (AA) refers to pain or discomfort in the gut when the blood supply to the tissues and organs of digestion have been compromised. AA can indicate a life threatening situation so it is important to identify risk factors in the clinic. Four categories include colonic ischemia, acute mesenteric artery ischemia, chronic mesenteric artery ischemia, and ischemia due to mesenteric venous thrombosis. A true diagnosis will be made using an angiogram or another form of vessel imagery to confirm occlusion(1).
- Age > 60 years
- Type I and II DM
Questions to incorporate in your exam include asking when the patient experiences discomfort during digesting or 15-30 minutes after eating a meal. Any prior atherosclerotic conditions or symptoms? Ask about diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, weight loss, aversion or fear of eating due to association of food with pain.