Abdominal angina

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Abdominal angina
Other namesIntestinal angina
SpecialtyGeneral surgery

Abdominal angina is abdominal pain after eating that occurs in individuals with ongoing poor blood supply to their small intestines known as chronic mesenteric ischemia.[1] Although the term angina alone usually denotes angina pectoris (a type of chest pain due to obstruction of the coronary artery), angina by itself can also mean "any spasmodic, choking, or suffocative pain",[2] with an anatomic adjective defining its focus; so, in this case, spasmodic pain in the abdomen. Stedman's Medical Dictionary Online[3] defines abdominal angina as "intermittent abdominal pain, frequently occurring at a fixed time after eating, caused by inadequacy of the mesenteric circulation resulting from arteriosclerosis or other arterial disease. Synonym: intestinal angina."

Signs and symptoms[edit]

  • Hallmark of condition: Intermittent abdominal pain a fixed period of time after eating.[3]
  • Physical examination: The abdomen typically is scaphoid and soft, even during an episode of pain. Patients present with stigmata of weight loss and signs of peripheral vascular disease, particularly aortoiliac occlusive disease, may be present.



The pathophysiology is similar to that seen in angina pectoris and intermittent claudication. The most common cause of abdominal angina is atherosclerotic vascular disease, where the occlusive process commonly involves the ostia and the proximal few centimeters of the mesenteric vessels.[citation needed] It can be associated with:


Stents have been used in the treatment of abdominal angina.[7][8]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Kapadia S, Parakh R, Grover T, Agarwal S (2005). "Side-to-side aorto-mesenteric anastomosis for management of abdominal angina". Indian Journal of Gastroenterology. 24 (6): 256–7. PMID 16424623.
  2. ^ Elsevier, Dorland's Illustrated Medical Dictionary, Elsevier.
  3. ^ a b Wolters Kluwer, Stedman's Medical Dictionary, Wolters Kluwer.
  4. ^ deVries H, Wijffels RT, Willemse PH, et al. (2005). "Abdominal angina in patients with a midgut carcinoid, a sign of severe pathology". World Journal of Surgery. 29 (9): 1139–42. doi:10.1007/s00268-005-7825-x. PMID 16086212. S2CID 5949030.
  5. ^ Ingu A, Morikawa M, Fuse S, Abe T (2003). "Acute occlusion of a simple aortic coarctation presenting as abdominal angina". Pediatric Cardiology. 24 (5): 488–9. doi:10.1007/s00246-002-0381-3. PMID 14627320. S2CID 12638082.
  6. ^ Choi BG, Jeon HS, Lee SO, Yoo WH, Lee ST, Ahn DS (2002). "Primary antiphospholipid syndrome presenting with abdominal angina and splenic infarction". Rheumatol. Int. 22 (3): 119–21. doi:10.1007/s00296-002-0196-9. PMID 12111088. S2CID 22613047.
  7. ^ Senechal Q, Massoni JM, Laurian C, Pernes JM (2001). "Transient relief of abdominal angina by Wallstent placement into an occluded superior mesenteric artery". The Journal of Cardiovascular Surgery. 42 (1): 101–5. PMID 11292915.
  8. ^ Busquet J (1997). "Intravascular stenting in the superior mesenteric artery for chronic abdominal angina". Journal of Endovascular Surgery. 4 (4): 380–4. doi:10.1583/1074-6218(1997)004<0380:ISITSM>2.0.CO;2. ISSN 1074-6218. PMID 9418203.

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