Which of the following steps is the final step that is used during the physical assessment of the abdomen?

  • A


  • B

    Light palpation

  • C

    Deep palpation

  • D


Correct Response: C

Deep palpation is cautiously done after light palpation when necessary because the client’s responses to deep palpation may include their tightening of the abdominal muscles, for example, which will make the light palpation less effective for this assessment, particularly if an area of pain or tenderness has been palpated.

Inspection is typically the first step and percussion of the abdomen should be done prior to any palpation, particularly deep palpation.