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What Can Be Causing My Stomach Pains

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How Common Are Stomachaches

What Causes Abdominal Pain? | Stomach Problems

Just about everybody will experience abdominal pain at one point or another. Most causes of abdominal pain are not serious and resolve spontaneously. A healthcare provider can usually readily diagnose and treat these conditions. However, abdominal pain can also be a sign of a serious illness, or even an emergency. Abdominal pain is responsible for some 5% of emergency room visits.

Other Stomach Cramps Causes

Other causes that can result in stomach cramps include the following.

  • Anxiety: Frequent worry takes a physical toll on the body and proper treatment from a professional goes a long way in relieving symptoms.
  • Medications: Certain drugs like ibuprofen or naproxen can be harsh on the stomach, especially when taken without food. There are suggestions to keep in mind when taking these medications to avoid abdominal cramps.
  • Menstrual pain: Women can experience stomach cramps as a regular part of the menstrual cycle.

When To Call Your Healthcare Provider

Some kinds of stomach pain need immediate attention. With others, you can call or visit your healthcare provider. It can be hard to know what you should do. Listen to your body and trust your instincts if you’re not sure.

If you have any of these symptoms along with stomach pain, call your healthcare provider within a day or two:

  • Excessive vaginal bleeding or blood clots
  • Vaginal bleeding that lasts for longer than usual

You should also call your healthcare provider if you have stomach pain while you are being treated for cancer.

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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

When Should I Call The Doctor

Common Causes of Abdominal Pain

Sometimes, what seems like one problem food poisoning, for example can turn out to be something more serious, like appendicitis.

  • the pain is very strong
  • you’re vomiting a lot
  • you already have another health condition
  • the pain gets worse over time, doesn’t go away, or wakes you up from sleep

Also let the doctor know if you:

  • have a fever
  • have pain when you pee
  • have trouble pooping or peeing
  • have blood in your poop or pee
  • think the belly pain is from an injury
  • might be pregnant

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How Do Doctors Find The Cause Of A Stomachache

To find the cause of a stomachache, doctors ask about:

  • your symptoms
  • illnesses you’ve had in the past
  • health conditions that other family members have

Be honest with your doctor, even if a symptom seems embarrassing.

The doctor will do an exam and sometimes might order tests, such as an X-ray, ultrasound, or blood test. It all depends on what the doctor thinks is causing the problem.

Learn The Common Causes And Home Remedies For Stomach Pain

My stomach hurts. If you have children, chances are youve heard this statement at least once.

Stomach pain is one of the most common complaints among children and teens. It can range from mild discomfort to severe cramping, burning or nausea. While most cases arent serious, its helpful to know what can cause stomach pain and when to call a doctor.

Here are some of the most frequent causes of stomach problems in small children and teens:

Gas

Gas pain or indigestion is common in kids of all ages. Diet often plays a role. Carbonated drinks, such as soda may upset the stomach, especially if the child drinks through a straw. Spicy foods, beans, citrus and caffeine may cause gas.

Constipation

Younger kids may not know what constipation is or that it can lead to stomach pain. If your child complains of stomach pain around the belly button or the left lower side of the abdomen, ask them when they last pooped, or if theyre having problems doing it.

Overeating

Too much of anything, from pizza and popcorn to Halloween candy, can cause abdominal pain. Kids often eat quickly and dont realize theyre full until theyve overdone it. Plus, eating too quickly can contribute to discomfort.

Lactose intolerance

Milk allergy

Milk allergy is a reaction to a protein in milk that may cause cramps. It is not the same as lactose intolerance.

Stress

Stomach virus

Appendicitis

When to call the pediatrician

Home treatment for tummy aches

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Gut Feeling: How To Know If Stomach Pain Is Serious

Abdominal pain is the single leading reason for emergency room visits in the U.S. according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, accounting for more than 12 million of the nearly 139 million annual ER visits. Most people call it stomach pain, but it’s not always a stomach problem. Your abdomen holds many other organs, too, including your intestines , pancreas, liver, gallbladder, kidneys, spleen and appendix.

So its not surprising that, just as with chest pain or a headache, it can be difficult to tell whats really going on in there when your tummy’s not feeling well. Add in other vague symptoms such as nausea and vomiting and you could have the stomach flu, food poisoning, gallstones, kidney stones or any number of other conditions.

Here are some ways to tell what the source of your pain is and when you should seek medical care.

Diagnosing Abdominal Pain And Diarrhea

What’s Causing My Son’s Stomach Pains? | This Morning

To determine the cause of abdominal pain and diarrhea, a doctor will first perform a physical exam. Theyll also ask some questions about your health history and lifestyle.

Traveling to certain countries may increase your risk of digestive disease. Be sure to mention any recent trips overseas. The doctor will also ask questions about any recent changes in your diet.

A doctor may perform a stool culture, in which theyll send a sample of your feces to a lab to check for bacteria, viruses, and parasites. If this comes up negative, they may run a more complete analysis of your feces to look for possible digestive disorders.

Other common diagnostic tests include:

  • Endoscopy. In an endoscopy, a doctor sends a camera down your throat and into your stomach to check for problems, such as ulcers and signs of celiac disease.
  • Colonoscopy. A colonoscopy involves sending a camera into the rectum and intestines to check for signs of damage and signs of disease, such as ulcers and polyps.
  • Lower GI tract radiography. In a lower GI tract radiography, also known as a barium enema, a technician will perform a real-time X-ray of the abdomen. This occurs after the doctor injects a barium-based contrast material into the rectum that can highlight intestinal obstructions and other conditions.

Medication can help treat the underlying condition causing your abdominal pain and diarrhea. If your symptoms are caused by stress or need to be managed, home remedies can help.

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If You Have Chronic Or Frequent Stomach Pain

Chronic indigestion, constipation or gas — that happens on a regular, ongoing basis — can sometimes be a symptom of an underlying condition. A few of the most common digestive conditions are listed below — but remember that only a health care professional can diagnose you, so make sure to consult with your provider if you’re concerned.

Normal Variation Of Constipation

Constipation means bowel movements which have become infrequent and/or hardened and difficult to pass.

There is wide variation in what is thought “normal” when it comes to frequency of bowel movements. Anywhere from three times a day to three times a week is considered normal.

As long as stools are easy to pass, laxatives should not be used in an effort to force the body to a more frequent schedule.

Constipation is usually caused by lack of fiber in the diet not drinking enough water insufficient exercise and often suppressing the urge to have a bowel movement.

A number of medications and remedies, especially narcotic pain relievers, can cause constipation.

Women are often affected, due to pregnancy and other hormonal changes. Young children who demand low-fiber or “junk food” diets are also susceptible.

Constipation is a condition, not a disease, and most of the time is easily corrected. If simple adjustments in diet, exercise, and bowel habits don’t help, a doctor can be consulted to rule out a more serious cause.

Rarity: Common

Top Symptoms: abdominal pain , nausea, stomach bloating, constipation, constipation

Symptoms that always occur with normal variation of constipation: constipation

Symptoms that never occur with normal variation of constipation: vomiting

Urgency: Self-treatment

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Cramping Or Pain With Bloody Diarrhea

Possible explanation: ulcerative colitis or Crohns disease

What is it: Ulcerative colitis and Crohns disease are both examples of inflammatory bowel disease that are differentiated by the part of the digestive tract that they affect. The cause of IBD is understood to be a complex interaction between genetic and lifestyle factors. Both diseases involve inflammation of respective parts of the digestive tract that cause numerous symptoms, including intestinal bleeding and associated abdominal pain.

Treatment: As with IBS, there is currently no cure for either ulcerative colitis or Crohns disease, so treatment is focused on managing the symptoms and long term quality of life. Usually, medication is chosen to reduce inflammation and manage symptoms. In severe cases, surgery to remove part or all the colon may be necessary in order to bring relief.

When To Call Your Doctor

Abdominal Pain: Map That Shows What Could Be The Cause Of Your Pain ...

No matter what treatment youâre following, get medical help right away if the pain gets intense, your joint suddenly becomes inflamed or deformed, or you can no longer use the joint at all.

Show Sources

CDC: “QuickStats: Percentage of Adults Reporting Joint Pain or Stiffness – National Health Interview Survey, United States, 2006,” âGout.â

Collyott, C.L. Orthopaedic Nursing, 2008.

Palmer T. The Journal of the American Board of Family Practice, 2004.

Vangsness, C.T. Jr. Arthroscopy, 2009.

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Why Does My Stomach Hurt

There are numerous reasons for abdominal pain. It can come from any of the organs in your belly gallbladder, pancreas, liver, stomach and intestines or the abdominal wall the outer shell of the body. Sometimes you feel the pain in your belly, but its actually coming from the chest, back or pelvis.

Abdominal wall pain is common and easy to miss as healthcare professionals may direct their attention to internal organs as a cause of the pain. Once the abdominal wall is considered as a suspect, it is generally easy to nail down this diagnosis. If a patient strains the ab wall muscles from exertion, he may tell his doctor that he has right sided stomach pain. Clearly, this pain is not caused by a diseased internal organ such as the gallbladder or the stomach.

Healthcare providers can often determine where pain is coming from by taking a detailed history from you. Depending upon the physicians style, you may be simply asked to relate your medical story in your own words as a narrative. Other physicians may prefer to ask a series of detailed questions. Others may utilize both techniques. This medical history is paramount, even more important than the physical examination. After the history and physical, certain diagnostic tests may be advised to make an accurate diagnosis.

Stomach Cramps With Bloating

Stomach cramps with bloating are often caused by trapped wind, or constipation. This is a very common problem that can be embarrassing, but is easily dealt with. Your pharmacist will be able to recommend a product, which can be bought over the counter to treat the problem. If problems persist, you should see your GP.

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What Causes An Upset Stomach

Many different things can cause pain or discomfort in the stomach. Some causes are more severe than others, and the treatment for stomach pain varies accordingly. Gas or bloating after a meal can be managed at home. However, drinking contaminated water while traveling requires care from a medical professional. Chronic health problems that cause stomach pain must be managed long term with the help of a healthcare professional.

Common causes of stomach pain include

  • greasy or fatty foods
  • bacteria such as salmonella or E. coli.
  • chronic conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome and Crohns disease

What Causes Stomach Burning

How to Know if Stomach Pain is Serious

Our stomach contains acids that digest the food and liquids we consume. The entry of food to the stomach is controlled by a valve . This valve does not allow food to re-enter the esophagus or the acids from the stomach to flow into the food pipe. Acid reflux occurs when this sphincter does not close properly, and the stomach acids enter the esophagus, causing a burning sensation along with other symptoms , . It can be caused due to a variety of reasons. Common ones include:

  • Overeating
  • Difficulty in swallowing ,

Certain medications may soothe the discomfort, but they can have negative side effects. As an alternative to these medications, you can try some natural remedies to find what works best to treat your condition. But if you experience burning in the stomach frequently, we suggest you opt for prescribed medicines only.

The answer to heartburn and acid indigestion lies in being able to restore your natural gastric balance and function. Some remedies you can use to overcome the burning sensation in your stomach are given below.

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Right Side Of The Abdomen

Upper right:

The upper right side of your abdomen contains the gallbladder, liver, and first part of the small intestine.

The gallbladder is a small sac that stores bile made by the liver. The duodenum, known as the first portion of the small intestine, is where food empties from the stomach into the small intestine.

Center right:

The center right side of the abdomen contains the ascending colon and the transverse colon. Food then passes from the ascending colon to the transverse colon.

Lower right:

The cecum of the large intestine with the appendix and the small intestine are in the lower right side of the abdomen. The cecum is the first part of the large intestine that the end of the small intestine connects to.

Some experts believe the appendix plays a role in the immune system. Others think it has no purpose.

If your doctor performs a physical exam and then suspects a medical condition is causing your abdominal bloating or pain, theyll run various medical tests.

The types of tests they order will depend on your medical history and physical exam results.

Some common tests for abdominal problems include the following:

Crampy Pain With Diarrhea Or Constipation

Lower “crampy” abdominal pain accompanied by bloating and diarrhea or constipation can be signs of irritable bowel syndrome , says Singh. “It’s exceptionally common and affects 15% of the U.S. population, particularly younger women, although it can happen at any age.” Symptoms of IBS can usually be controlled by managing diet, lifestyle, and stress. Medication and counseling may be needed in some cases.

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Upper Abdominal Pain Between The Ribcage

If you develop an aching or stabbing pain or pressure in the upper abdominal area just under the ribs, this may indicate a heart-related problem. Physicians say this pain is often accompanied by shortness of breath and is concerning if the pain persists. People often assume this type of pain is indigestion, and while that may be the case, anyone with risk factors such as diabetes or hypertension should see a doctor as soon as possible.

Symptoms Of Abdominal Pain In Adults

Causes of abdominal pain by area

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.

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Sharp Jabbing Pain In The Upper Right Abdomen

Possible explanation: gallstones

What is it: The gallbladder stores some of the bile that is used in digestion it combines with digestive juices from the liver and pancreas to break down the partially digested food that has left the stomach and entered the small intestine. The most frequent cause of gallstones is when the liver excretes excess cholesterol that excess cholesterol can collect in the gallbladder and harden into gallstones. The gallbladder sits next to the liver, and it is in this location in the upper right abdomen that sharp pain can be felt when the body attempts to pass the gallstones through the narrow biliary duct.

Treatment: Some people have gallstones without any symptoms at all, but when pain begins, the condition needs to be treated soon. Depending on the severity of the condition, treatments range from oral medication to dissolve the stones to surgery to remove the gallbladder.

Three Things To Look For With Stomach Pain

Suhail Sharif, MD, a general surgeon at Medical City Fort Worth and Medical City Alliance says there are three things you should look for that can help diagnose the source of abdominal pain, including:

  • Type of pain: Is it a dull, achy, constant pain? Or more of a sharp, stabbing pain that comes and goes? This can tell doctors a lot about what might be going on.
  • Location of pain: Pinpointing the exact location can be difficult, but try to narrow it down to the upper abdomen, the lower abdomen, the right side or the left. The abdomen has multiple organs, Dr. Sharif says, and as such any organ can cause abdominal pain.
  • Additional symptoms: Are there other symptoms associated with your abdominal pain, such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, bloating or indigestion? Your doctor will take all of these into account when making a diagnosis.

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