How Is The Cause Of Abdominal Pain Diagnosed
Abdominal pain is one of the most common symptoms seen by GPs .
Information about your symptoms and the location of the abdominal pain can help a doctor diagnose the cause of your pain. They will want to know how long you have had the pain and may want to do a physical examination. If you are female, this may include a pelvic examination. If you are male, it may include checking your penis and scrotum.
They may suggest you have some blood tests or other diagnostic procedures done, especially if you have had the symptoms for some time.
Tests and procedures that may help in diagnosing the cause of abdominal pain include:
Other procedures that may be suggested, depending on your gender, include:
- pregnancy test and/or pelvic ultrasound
- ultrasound of the scrotum
Pelvic Pain & Abdominal Pain In Women: Causes & Symptoms
There are a plethora of systems and organs that can cause women to have abdominal and pelvic pain. Sometimes pain is due to digestive issues while other times it can be caused by the reproductive system and menstrual cycle. Your body gives you many signs that can help you uncover what might be causing your pain. Were here to help you understand the pangs, aches, and cramps you may be feeling.
Types Of Abdominal Pain And What You Can Do
Abdominal pain can occur anywhere between the chest and the lower abdomen and can range from a dull ache to severe pain. Abdominal pain is one of the common reasons people visit urgent care centers and emergency rooms in the 78130 area code of New Braunfels, Texas.
The doctors and the medical professionals at Riverside ER, a 24-hour emergency care center located near you in New Braunfels, Texas, want to educate the public on the symptoms of abdominal pain and the relevant treatment.
There are four types of abdominal pain: upper, lower, right-sided and left-sided. Each type has specific symptoms and causes, and all are discussed below.
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Sudden Stomach Cramps With Diarrhoea
If your stomach cramps have started recently and you also have diarrhoea, the cause may be a tummy bug . This means you have a viral or bacterial infection of the stomach and bowel. It should get better without treatment after a few days.
Gastroenteritis may be caused by:
- coming into close contact with someone who’s infected
- eating contaminated food
If you have repeated bouts of stomach cramps and diarrhoea, you may have a long-term condition, such as irritable bowel syndrome .
Causes Of Abdominal Pain In Adults
There are many reasons why you may have pain in your abdomen. People often worry about appendicitis, gallstones, ulcers, infections and pregnancy problems. Doctors also worry about these, as well as many other conditions. Abdominal pain may not come from the abdomen. Some surprising causes include heart attacks and pneumonias, conditions in the pelvis or groin, some skin rashes like shingles, and problems with stomach muscles like a strain. The pain may occur along with problems in passing urine or with bowel motions, or period problems.With so many organs and structures in the abdomen, it can be hard for a doctor to be absolutely sure about the cause of your problem. The doctor will ask you several questions and then examine you carefully. The doctor may perform no further tests. The cause of your pain may be quite clearly not serious. Another scenario may be that the doctor is unable to find a cause, but the pain gets better within hours or days. All the doctor can do is to be sure that the pain does not require surgery or admission to hospital.
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The Pain Came On Pretty Quickly And Youre Vomiting
This could also be a sign of foodborne illness like salmonella, shigella, campylobacter, or E.coli. Its really no surprise that if you eat something off, your body might pull an Exorcist in response.
But these symptoms can also happen due to acute gastroenteritis, also known as the stomach flu, Priyam V. Tripathi, M.D., M.P.H., a gastroenterologist at the UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine, tells SELF. Gastroenteritis is an inflammation of the lining of the intestines that can be caused by a virus, bacteria, or parasite, the U.S. National Library of Medicine says, noting that the viral form of gastroenteritis is the second most common illness in the United States. While it can be hard to tell the difference between food poisoning and the stomach flu , one key differentiator is that gastroenteritis usually doesnt cause bloody diarrhea, while food poisoning often does, as SELF previously explained.
The good news is that gastroenteritis usually goes away on its own, Dr. Tripathi says. But, she adds, if youre struggling to keep fluids down , its definitely time to see a doctor.
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Are Cramps In Pregnancy Normal
Its completely understandable to worry about stomach pain in pregnancy and be anxious about this being a sign of miscarriage. But stomach pains or cramps are common in pregnancy and usually nothing to worry about.
Mild stomach pain in early pregnancy is usually caused by your womb expanding, the ligaments stretching as your bump grows, hormones constipation or trapped wind. It may sometimes feel like a stitch or mild period pain. Its is probably nothing to worry about if the pain is mild and goes away when you change position, have a rest, do a poo or pass wind.
You may also feel light period-like discomfort or cramps at the end of your pregnancy. This is nothing to worry about, but call your midwife if you have any concerns.
Causes Of Acute Stomach Pain
- Eating Too Much. Eating too much can cause an upset stomach and mild stomach pain.
- Hunger Pains. Younger children may complain of stomach pain when they are hungry.
- GI Virus . A GI virus can cause stomach cramps as well as vomiting and/or diarrhea.
- Food Poisoning. This causes sudden vomiting and/or diarrhea within hours after eating the bad food. It is caused by toxins from germs growing in foods left out too long. Most often, symptoms go away in less than 24 hours. It often can be treated at home without the need for medical care.
- Constipation. The need to pass a stool may cause cramps in the lower abdomen.
- Strep Throat. A strep throat infection causes 10% of new onset stomach pain with fever.
- Bladder Infection. Bladder infections usually present with painful urination, urgency and bad smelling urine. Sometimes the only symptom is pain in the lower abdomen.
- Appendicitis . Suspect appendicitis if pain is low on the right side and walks bent over. Other signs are the child won’t hop and wants to lie still.
- Intussusception . Sudden attacks of severe pain that switch back and forth with periods of calm. Caused by one segment of bowel telescoping into a lower piece of bowel. Peak age is 6 months to 2 years.
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Types Of Abdominal Pain
Not all abdominal pain is the same. For example, if youre experiencing acute abdominal pain, youve most likely only been dealing with the discomfort for about a week, maybe less.
Chronic abdominal pain, on the other hand, is pain thats constant or recurring. It lasts for a period of 3 months or longer.
Since there are a number of gastrointestinal and systemic disorders that lead to abdominal pain, doctors and healthcare professionals sometimes have a hard time understanding the root cause of the pain.
Progressive abdominal pain is pain that gets worse over time. Typically other symptoms occur as the abdominal pain progresses. Progressive abdominal pain is often a sign of something more serious. Read on to learn more about the different types of abdominal pain, including what and where the pain occurs and potential causes.
The Pain Is In Your Side Or Lower Back And It Hurts To Pee
It could be a kidney stone, which is a pebble-like piece of material that can form in one or both of your kidneys when you have high levels of certain minerals in your pee. Kidney stones can vary in shape and size, the NIDDK explains, and while its possible to have one and not even know it, larger stones can cause some otherworldly pain as they pass through your urinary tract on their way out of your body. Pain usually comes and goes and may move toward the groin, Dr. Lee says. The pain can be so intense that it can cause nausea, vomiting, and chills. In addition to the pain, you might also notice that your urine is pink, red, or brown due to blood, the NIDDK says. Given how painful kidney stones can be, you probably dont need us to tell you that you should see a doctor if you think you have them. Seriously, though, dont try to tough it out!
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Symptoms Of Abdominal Pain In Adults
The type of pain can vary greatly. When abdominal pain occurs, it can:
- be sharp, dull, stabbing, cramp-like, twisting or fit many other descriptions
- be brief, come and go in waves, or it can be constant
- make you throw up
- make you want to stay still or make you so restless that you pace around trying to find just the right position
- vary from a minor problem to one needing urgent surgery.
What Is Abdominal Pain
Abdominal pain may be felt anywhere between the chest and groin region of your body. The pain may be generalized, localized, or it may feel like cramps in your belly. If you have cramping or discomfort in your stomach, it may be due to gas, bloating, or constipation. Or it might be a sign of a more serious medical condition.
Colicky pain in the abdomen region comes and goes. One moment, you may feel fine, but the next, you may experience sharp, sudden pain in your abdomen. Kidney stones and gallstones are often the cause of this type of pain.
Many conditions can cause abdominal pain. But the main causes are:
Mild abdominal pain may go away without treatment. For example, if youre experiencing abdominal pain because of gas or bloating, it may simply need to run its course.
But in some cases, abdominal pain may warrant a trip to the doctor.
You should seek immediate medical care if the pain is so severe that you cant sit still or need to curl into a ball to get comfortable, or if you have any of the following:
- unexplained weight loss
If you dont already have a gastroenterologist, the Healthline FindCare tool can help you find a physician in your area.
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When To Contact A Medical Professional
Get medical help right away or call your local emergency number if you:
- Are currently being treated for cancer
- Are unable to pass stool, especially if you are also vomiting
- Are vomiting blood or have blood in your stool
- Have chest, neck, or shoulder pain
- Have sudden, sharp abdominal pain
- Have pain in, or between, your shoulder blades with nausea
- Have tenderness in your belly, or your belly is rigid and hard to the touch
- Are pregnant or could be pregnant
- Had a recent injury to your abdomen
- Have difficulty breathing
What Is Causing Your Pain
The process involves the egg being released from the ovaries to the fallopian tubes towards the uterus.
If fertilized, the egg will attach itself to the uterine wall.
Before jumping to conclusion on the suspicion of pregnancy, there are many causes of or severe menstrual discomfort during this time.
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Cramping At Lower Abdomen Is Common But Really Annoying And Excruciating Find Out Its Causes Accompanying Symptoms And Proper Treatments Here
People often refer to the abdomen as their belly or stomach, and it is a part of the body that lies between the chest and the pelvis. The abdomen may be divided into four parts for diagnostic purposes, and these are named the upper right, upper left, lower right, and lower left quadrants.
Lower abdominal cramping or pain is one of the most common symptoms experienced, and it may be either in the lower right or in lower left side. There are many possible causes of lower abdominal pain, and the diagnosis may depend on the accompanying symptoms and location of the pain.
Emotional Reaction To Sex
Many people experience abdominal pain after sex because of a negative emotional reaction. If youâre feeling anxiety, stress, sadness, or irritation before sex, you may feel physical symptoms of nausea, pain, or gas after sex. Similarly, if you feel emotionally uncomfortable during intercourse, your feelings may translate into physical symptoms after intercourse.
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Spasms Of The Fallopian And Uterus
The spasms that occur in the fallopian tube and the uterus are one of the causes of cramps after ovulating. After the egg is released, spasms will force the egg through the fallopian tube towards the uterus.
A spasm is basically an involuntary contraction of a muscle in response to the existing conditions. When the fallopian tube and the uterus experience these spasms, some pain is experienced in the form of cramps.
Causes Of Abdominal Pain And Diarrhea In Children
Like adults, children often experience abdominal pain and diarrhea because of stomach flu, infections, food allergies, lactose intolerance, or stress. But eating too much can also cause these symptoms.
Some children may have trouble telling the difference between when theyre hungry and when theyre full. This can cause them to overeat. Overeating puts stress on the digestive system, which can cause abdominal pain and diarrhea.
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Diagnosis Of Lower Abdominal Cramping
Sometimes the doctor can diagnose what causes cramping at lower abdomen from a patient’s medical history and physical examination. However, he may also need to do some laboratory tests to confirm the diagnosis or to rule out other possible conditions. These diagnostic tests may include:
- Blood tests
- CT scan of the abdomen
- Magnetic resonance imaging
Make Sure Youre Emotionally Ready For Sex
As I mentioned earlier, you could be experiencing stomach pain after sex if you were feeling anxious or upset before or during intercourse. Clearly communicate your feelings with your partner, so that youâre feeling comfortable and emotionally prepared for sex. The more prepared and desirous of sex you are, the more likely you are to enjoy it.
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When To See A Doctor About Abdominal Pain
Go straight to your doctor or the emergency department of the nearest hospital if you have any of:
- severe pain
- pain lasting for several hours
- pain and/or vaginal bleeding if you are pregnant
- pain in your scrotum if you are a male
- pain and vomiting or shortness of breath
- pain and vomiting blood
- blood in your bowel motions or urine
- pain that spreads to your chest, neck or shoulder
- fever and sweats
- unable to move your bowels or pass gas
- any other concerns.
When To Seek Immediate Medical Help
Severe abdominal pain is a greater cause for concern. If it starts suddenly and unexpectedly, and persists, it should be regarded as a medical emergency, especially if the pain is concentrated in a particular area.
or go to your nearest hospital emergency department if this is the case.
If you feel pain in the area around your ribs, see the section on chest pain.
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Signs You Should See A Doctor About Stomach Pain
Stomach pain can be tricky for even the best doctors to diagnose, so if all youre armed with is Google, M.D., sussing out whats causing your discomfort can be hard. For starters, stomach pain is a pretty broad description. Are we talking a mild yet persistent twinge or a cramps-that-hurt-so-badly-youre-on-the-floor kind of situation? Then theres the fact that stomach pain can crop up pretty much anywhere in your abdomen, and health issues that cause problems in one part of your belly might not affect others. These seemingly little nuances all matter when it comes to narrowing down what could be behind your stomach pain.
If youre struggling with stomach pain that makes you wonder if you should see a doctor, you probably should. Nothing beats an evaluation from an expert. That said, its understandable that you might want to have some inkling of what may be going on before then. Here are some common types of stomach pain you can experience, plus the health issues that could be behind them.