NURS 6512 Week 6 Assignment 1: Lab Assignment: Assessing the Abdomen

Sample Answer for NURS 6512 Week 6 Assignment 1: Lab Assignment: Assessing the Abdomen Included After Question


A Sample Answer For the Assignment: NURS 6512 Week 6 Assignment 1: Lab Assignment: Assessing the Abdomen

Title: NURS 6512 Week 6 Assignment 1: Lab Assignment: Assessing the Abdomen

NURS 6512 Week 6 Assignment 1: Lab Assignment: Assessing the Abdomen

Need Help Writing an Essay?

Tell us about your assignment and we will find the best writer for your paper

Write My Essay For Me


Irikefe Ojevwe 

Doctor of Nursing, Walden University 

NURS 6512: Advanced Health Assessment and Diagnostic Reasoning 

Dr. Mariea Snell DNP, APRN, FNP-C, FAANP, 

Oct 10th, 2022 




Week 6 Assignment 1: Lab Assignment: Assessing the Abdomen  

The SOAP note concerns a 47-year-old white man with chief complaints of abdominal pain and diarrhea. He has had generalized abdominal pain for three days but has not taken any meds to relieve the pain. He reports that the pain was initially at 9/10 but has reduced to 5/10, and he cannot eat due to ensuing nausea. His medical history is positive for  

hypertension, DM, and GI bleeding. GI exam findings include a soft abdomen, hyperactive bowel sounds, and LLQ pain. The purpose of this paper is to analyze the SOAP note, identify appropriate diagnostic tests, and discuss likely diagnoses. 

Subjective Portion 

The SOAP note’s HPI describes the abdominal pain, including the onset, location, associated symptoms, and severity of pain. Nevertheless, the HPI should have given an additional description of the abdominal pain, particularly the duration of the abdominal pain, timing (before, during, or after meals), and frequency. In addition, the characteristics of the abdominal pain should be included describing if the pain is sharp, crampy, dull, colicky, diffuses, constant, or radiating (Sokic-Milutinovic et al., 2022). In addition, the HPI should have included the exacerbating and alleviating factors for the abdominal pain and to what level the alleviating factors relieve the pain. Furthermore, the HPI has described only the abdominal pain leaving out diarrhea. It should describe diarrhea, including the onset, timing, frequency, characteristics of the stools (watery, mucoid, bloody, greasy, or malodorous), and relieving and aggravating factors.  

The subjective part should have included the patient’s immunization status with a focus on the last Tdap, Influenza, and COVID shots and surgical history. The social history has scanty information and should have included the patient’s education level, occupation, current living status, hobbies, exercise and sleep patterns, dietary habits, and health promotion interventions (Gossman et al., 2020). Lastly, a review of systems (ROS) is mandatory for a SOAP note. Thus, the SOAP note should have a ROS that indicates the pertinent positive and negative symptoms in each body system, which helps identify other symptoms the patient has not reported in the HPI.  

Objective Portion 

The objective part misses critical information like the findings from the general assessment of the patient, which should include the client’s general appearance, personal hygiene, grooming, dressing, speech, body language, and attitude towards the clinician. In addition, findings from a detailed abdominal exam should have been provided. For instance, it should have inspection findings, including the abdomen’s pigmentation, respiratory movements, symmetry, contour, and presence of scars. Additional auscultation findings that should be indicated include the presence of friction ribs, vascular sounds, and venous hum. It should also have exam findings from palpation and percussion, including abdominal tenderness, masses, organomegaly, guarding, or rebound tenderness (Sokic-Milutinovic et al., 2022). Besides, the liver span and spleen position should be indicated.  


The assessment findings identified in the SOAP note are Left lower quadrant (LLQ) pain and gastroenteritis (GE). LLQ pain is supported by subjective findings of abdominal pain and LLQ tenderness on exam. GE is consistent with subjective data of diarrhea, abdominal pain, and nausea and objective data of low-grade fever of 99.8 and hyperactive bowel sounds, which are classic symptoms. 

Diagnostic Tests 

The appropriate diagnostic tests for this patient are stool culture, complete blood count (CBC), and abdominal ultrasound. A stool culture is crucial to look for ova and cyst, which will help establish the causative agent for diarrhea and guide the treatment plan. Based on the WBC count, the CBC will establish if the patient has an infection and if the infection is bacterial or viral (Sokic-Milutinovic et al., 2022). The abdominal ultrasound will be used to visualize abdominal organs and identify if there is inflammation that could be contributing to the patient’s GI symptoms.  

Differential Diagnoses 

I would accept the GE diagnosis because it is consistent with the patient’s clinical features of diarrhea, generalized abdominal pain, nausea, low-grade fever, hyperactive bowel sounds, and abdominal tenderness. Nevertheless, I would reject LLQ pain as a diagnosis because it is a physical exam finding and does not fit the description of a medical diagnosis. The likely diagnoses for this case are: 

Acute Viral Gastroenteritis  

Viral GE is an acute, self-limiting diarrheal disease caused by viruses. The common causative viruses are rotavirus, norovirus, enteric adenovirus, and astroviruses. Clinical manifestations include anorexia, nausea, vomiting, watery diarrhea, abdominal pain/tenderness (mild to moderate), low-grade fever, dehydration, and hyperactive bowel sounds (Orenstein, 2020). Acute Viral GE is a presumptive diagnosis due to the patient’s clinical manifestations of nausea, diarrhea, abdominal pain, mild fever, abdominal tenderness on palpation, and hyperactive bowel sounds. 

Ulcerative Colitis (UC) 

UC is a chronic inflammatory and ulcerative GI disorder that occurs in the colonic mucosa and is characterized by bloody diarrhea. Clinical symptoms include mild lower abdominal pain, bloody diarrhea, and bloody mucoid stools. Systemic manifestations include anorexia, nausea, fever, malaise, anemia, and weight loss (Porter et al., 2020). The patient’s positive findings of nausea, diarrhea, abdominal pain, and mild fever, as well as a history of GI bleeding, makes UC a likely diagnosis.  

Colonic Diverticulitis 

Diverticulitis presents with inflammation of a diverticulum with the presence or absence of infection. Abdominal pain is the primary symptom of colonic diverticulitis. Patients present with LLQ abdominal pain and tenderness, which can sometimes be suprapubic and often have a palpable sigmoid. The abdominal pain is usually accompanied by fever, nausea, vomiting, and occasionally urinary symptoms (Swanson & Strate, 2018). Peritoneal signs like rebound and guarding can occur, especially with abscess or perforation. Colonic diverticulitis is a probable diagnosis based on nausea, mild fever, and LLQ pain findings.  


The HPI in the objective portion should have described the characteristics of the abdominal pain and stated the onset, frequency, characteristics, and timing of diarrhea. A ROS should also be included with the patient’s positive and negative symptoms. The objective part should have detailed physical exam findings from a detailed abdominal exam. Diagnostic tests should include stool culture, CBC, and abdominal U/S. The likely diagnoses are Vital GE, Ulcerative colitis, and colonic diverticulitis. 



Gossman, W., Lew, V., & Ghassemzadeh, S. (2020). SOAP Notes. In StatPearls [Internet]. StatPearls Publishing. 

Orenstein, R. (2020). Gastroenteritis, Viral. Encyclopedia of Gastroenterology, 652–657. 

Porter, R. J., Kalla, R., & Ho, G. T. (2020). Ulcerative colitis: Recent advances in the understanding of disease pathogenesis. F1000Research, 9, F1000 Faculty Rev-294. 

Sokic-Milutinovic, A., Pavlovic-Markovic, A., Tomasevic, R. S., & Lukic, S. (2022). Diarrhea as a clinical challenge: General practitioner approach. Digestive Diseases, 40(3), 282-289. 

Swanson, S. M., & Strate, L. L. (2018). Acute colonic diverticulitis. Annals of Internal Medicine, 168(9), ITC65–ITC80. 



The post NURS 6512 Week 6 Assignment 1: Lab Assignment: Assessing the Abdomen appeared first on Nursing Assignment Crackers.

Let our team of professional writers take care of your essay for you! We provide quality and plagiarism free academic papers written from scratch. Sit back, relax, and leave the writing to us! Meet some of our best research paper writing experts. We obey strict privacy policies to secure every byte of information between you and us.