DOI: 10.4103/jfmpc.jfmpc_851_23 ISSN: 2249-4863

A case of rectus sheath hematoma in the setting of paroxysmal coughing and platelet dysfunction

Erika Harris, Taylor Fleshman, Adam Franks
  • General Materials Science

Rectus sheath hematoma (RSH) is an uncommon cause of acute abdominal pain that may mimic other intra-abdominal pathologies. It is caused by the rupture of the superior or inferior epigastric artery or vein in the rectus abdominis muscle. Clinical features include sudden-onset abdominal pain and a palpable mass, and common risk factors include anti-coagulants, platelet dysfunction, and cough. Workup includes a physical exam, complete blood count, coagulation profile, ultrasound, and computed tomography. While most cases are treated conservatively, uncontrolled hemorrhage may be lethal and requires prompt recognition. We discuss a case of RSH which developed in the setting of paroxysmal coughing and platelet dysfunction. The purpose is to highlight the diagnosis and treatment of RSH and emphasize the importance of its inclusion in the differential for acute abdominal pain.

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