bowel sounds

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bowel bypass syndrome a syndrome that may occur one to six years after jejunoileal bypass, characterized by rash, malaise, myalgia, polyarthralgia, sterile skin pustules, and a flulike illness; it is probably caused by circulating immune complexes that include bacterial antigens resulting from bacterial overgrowth in the bypassed bowel.
bowel sounds relatively high-pitched abdominal sounds caused by the propulsion of the intestinal contents through the lower alimentary tract. Auscultation of bowel sounds is best accomplished by using a diaphragm-type stethoscope rather than a bell-shaped one. Normal bowel sounds are characterized by bubbling and gurgling noises that vary in frequency, intensity, and pitch. In the presence of distention from flatus, the sounds are hyperresonant and can be heard over the entire abdomen.

The absence of bowel sounds is symptomatic of greatly decreased or totally absent peristaltic movement. This can occur in such conditions as paralytic ileus, advanced intestinal obstruction, gangrene of the bowel, enterocolic ulceration, myxedema, and spinal cord injury. In the early stages of bowel obstruction, high-pitched splashing sounds are heard in the intestine proximal to the obstruction. As the obstruction continues to constrict the lumen of the bowel, the sounds are of shorter duration and eventually cease altogether as the obstruction to the lumen of the bowel becomes complete.

Increased motility of the bowel usually results from some sort of irritating stimulus, such as gastroenteritis with diarrhea, bleeding in the intestine, and emotional disorders. Hyperactivity of the bowel produces a rush of sounds, with waves of loud, gurgling, and tinkling sounds called borborygmi.
bowel training
1. a nursing intervention classification defined as assisting the patient to learn to evacuate the bowel at specific intervals.
2. a program designed to help the patient having difficulty with the regulation and control of defecation. A program of this type may be indicated in cases ranging from chronic constipation to paralysis, as in paraplegia and hemiplegia. Patients who suffer from lesions or congenital anomalies of the intestinal tract also may benefit from such a program.

Before planning a program of bowel control it is necessary to determine the cause of the difficulty, the patient's former bowel habits, and specific symptoms. The plan devised will depend on the patient's needs and physical, mental, and emotional capacities for cooperation in the planning and implementation of the program. It is necessary to know whether the person can realistically be expected to achieve complete control, or if neural damage or anatomical and structural changes in the intestine prevent reaching this goal. For example, a colostomy patient cannot achieve complete control over bowel movements, but regulation of diet and fluid intake can affect the number and consistency of the stools, giving some sense of security. Diet also is important in all other types of bowel training in which the goal is regularity of defecation and stools of normal consistency.

It is important that patients participate as much as possible in planning the program. They will need to give an accurate history of bowel habits, former use of laxatives and enemas, usual time of day for bowel movements, and the frequency, and whether or not they are aware of the urge to defecate. As the program is carried out, revisions may be necessary as the patient learns which techniques are most helpful.

The major components of a bowel training program are choosing the location to ensure some degree of privacy, getting the patient into a sitting position, having him attempt defecation at a specific time that is most natural for him, regulating the food and fluid intake, and establishing some plan of regular exercise and physical activity.

In some cases of paralysis it may be necessary to stimulate bowel function through the use of suppositories and digital stimulation. Enemas, laxatives, and bulk-forming medications are used only if necessary, not on a regular basis if at all possible. These measures may be necessary, however, at the beginning of a bowel training program to remove constipated stool and fecal impaction.
Miller-Keane Encyclopedia and Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing, and Allied Health, Seventh Edition. © 2003 by Saunders, an imprint of Elsevier, Inc. All rights reserved.

bow·el sounds

relatively high-pitched abdominal sounds caused by propulsion of intestinal contents through the lower alimentary tract.
Farlex Partner Medical Dictionary © Farlex 2012

bow·el sounds

(bow'ĕl sowndz)
Relatively high-pitched abdominal sounds caused by propulsion of intestinal contents through the lower alimentary tract.
Medical Dictionary for the Health Professions and Nursing © Farlex 2012

bowel sounds

The noise made by the movement of the bowel contents, under the influence of PERISTALSIS which, although normally almost silent, can easily be heard through a stethoscope. Bowel sounds become much louder if there is any intestinal obstruction and are abolished in the condition of paralytic ileus. See also BORBORYGMI.
Collins Dictionary of Medicine © Robert M. Youngson 2004, 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
The study findings has shown reduced time to the first bowel sounds, defecation, passage of flatus, and feeling of hunger following chewing gum after the cesarean section.
The evening shift assessment was unremarkable except for a low-grade fever and hypoactive bowel sounds. MP's vital signs were 99.5 [degrees]F, heart rate 108 beats/minute, respirations 13/minute via ventilator, blood pressure 84/50 mm Hg (a normal blood pressure in a tetraplegic), and he had a moderate sized bowel movement.
Bowel sounds were monitored once per day by a third-year medical student who performed auscultation for 1 minute in the periumbilical area.
the patient has no bowel sounds, therefore the gut may not be working, increasing the risk of aspiration
He can also be cut, make bowel sounds and respond to injections.
The pounds 25,000 technology is life-size and can simulate breathing, heart sounds, bowel sounds, collapsed lungs and even allergic reactions.
During the day, the staff noted that David had decreased bowel sounds. He had had no bowel movements since his admission to the hospital.
Symptoms of strangulation include: severe pain, vomiting, distension of the abdomen, noisy bowel sounds, absolute constipation.
* Possible unstable medical condition related to recent bowel surgery evidenced by hypoactive bowel sounds
On physical examination, all these persons had clinical manifestations of anticholinergic toxicity (i.e., tachycardia, mild hypertension, dilated pupils, dry skin and mucous membranes, and diminished or absent bowel sounds); five had urinary retention.
[10] Signs and symptoms may include Severe abdominal pain or cramping, Abdominal distention, Vomiting, Abnormal bowel sounds, Inability to pass stool and flatus through stoma.