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Scaphoid abdomen is the term given to an inward concavity of the anterior abdominal wall. It is used both for the clinical appearance and its radiological equivalent.
In congenital diaphragmatic hernia, the movement of abdominal organs into the thorax means reduced abdominal contents and therefore a sunken appearance to the abdomen.
In malnutrition states, the absence of visceral and abdominal fat and muscle bulk results in a sunken abdomen.
If there is no history of diaphragmatic hernia, then usually it is due to malnutrition from whatever cause.
- congenital diaphragmatic hernia
- malnutrition: many causes
- decreased oral intake, e.g. anorexia nervosa, starvation
- decreased GI absorption, many bowel diseases
- increased bodily losses
- increased energy usage
Typical sunken or concave appearance of the anterior abdominal wall on cross-sectional imaging.
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