The nurse is monitoring a patient with diverticulitis for the presence of a bowel perforation. The nurse should be alert to which of the following?


• Perforation causes a board-like rigidity of the abdomen, guarding of the abdomen, fever, chills, pallor, tachycardia, distention, and restlessness.

• Perforation causes an inflammatory reaction in the peritoneal cavity called peritonitis. Sepsis can occur when the bowel contents leak into the peritoneum.

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