bowel sounds

  1. Can someone please tell me the rule of thumb on bowel sounds. If someone has bowel sounds that means their bowels are working or there is peristalsis right? So, what about if they don't have bowel sounds? Would they have a bowel obstruction? Also, if someone has diarrhea, what kind of bowel sounds would you expect to hear?
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    About RN always

    Joined: Nov '02; Posts: 346; Likes: 3
    staff nurse med/surg


  3. by   Sleepyeyes

    I liked this teaching. It was an accurate, practical way to assess the pt's bowel.
  4. by   VivaLasViejas
    If they don't have bowel sounds, they could have an ileus (like after abdominal surgery sometimes, when the bowel doesn't "wake up" for awhile). With diarrhea, you usually hear frequent, high-pitched sounds because things are moving too fast through the GI tract. Then sometimes you'll hear very infrequent bowel tones, or not hear them in all 4 quadrants; these can mean a lot of different things, bowel obstruction being only one of them. (In long-term care, we deal with a lot of FOS, so we have to learn how to interpret these sounds since we can easily give the wrong treatment if we fail to pick up on a small-bowel obstruction.)
  5. by   Sleepyeyes

    This one looked pretty good too....

    course, you can always practice listening to the fam before and after dinner today... hee hee
  6. by   RN always
    WOW, thanks...................