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When To Go To Er For Stomach Pain

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Common Symptoms Of Stomach Pain

When to go to the ER for stomach pain

Almost everyone experiences some type of stomach pain from time to time and most cases are mild or harmless. However, severe pain in your stomach can become a more serious problem especially if left undiagnosed.

Possible symptoms of stomach pain that may require a visit to the ER, include:

  • Food poisoning
  • GERD

What To Consider When You Have Abdominal Pain

Urgent care centers are often open to handle non-specialized care even outside of the normal working hours. Their care is affordable and you can walk in and out within an hour without booking an appointment. They also accept a number of different insurance policies.

On the other hand, emergency rooms are meant to handle life-threatening health conditions. Therefore, unless you have a life-threatening condition, its always prudent to visit an urgent care center to avoid taking up space in an emergency room where a patient in a critical condition may need medical help.

How Can You Evaluate The Severity Of Your Pain

When you have abdominal pain, your doctor needs information to evaluate the cause of your pain and the severity of the problem. You can help by providing specifics such as:

  • Location of the pain: Is it in one place or an all-over pain?
  • Symptoms: Do you have symptoms in addition to pain like nausea, fever, or weakness?
  • Type of pain: Would you describe your pain as sharp, dull, burning, or throbbing?
  • Factors that help or hurt: What makes your pain feel better or worse? Does movement hurt or does lying down help?
  • Timing: How long does your pain last, and is it constant or does it come and go?
  • Severity: On a scale of zero to 10, how bad is your pain?

When you have localized pain, the underlying cause can often be determined by the organs associated with the area of the pain.

Upper abdominal pain may arise from problems with your stomach, liver, gallbladder or pancreas, while pain in the middle of your abdomen tends to come from a problem with your small intestine or kidneys.

When pain is in the lower part of your abdomen, it may involve your colon or organs in your genitourinary tract, such as the bladder, uterus, and ovaries.

An inflamed appendix can be tricky, because its pain often begins around your navel then moves down to your lower, right abdomen, which is where the appendix is located.

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Er Average Wait Times

ER wait times are approximate and provided for informational purposes only. If you are having a medical emergency, call 9-1-1.

The ER wait time represents the time it takes to see a qualified medical professional, defined as a Doctor of Medicine , Doctor of Osteopathy , Physician Assistant or Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner .

ER wait times represent a four-hour rolling average updated every 30 minutes, and is defined as the time of patient arrival until the time the patient is greeted by a qualified medical professional. Patients are triaged at arrival and are then seen by a qualified medical professional in priority order based on their presenting complaint and reason for visit.

When Is Abdominal Pain An Emergency

Should I go to the ER? Abdominal Pain

    Your abdomen houses a lot of your bodys most important parts and processes, including several key organs and your digestive tract. Thats why pain in your abdominal area can be difficult to nail down. Is it just a stomach ache, or is something more serious going on in your abdomen?

    Our dedicated team at Smart Clinic Urgent Care is knowledgeable about the various causes of abdominal pain and can help you find the right treatment to ease your discomfort whether its minor or an emergency. We offer expert care for abdominal pain at our clinics in West Covina and Santa Clarita, California.

    But when should you come see us? Heres a look at some warning signs that your abdominal pain could be something serious that warrants a prompt visit to the doctor.

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    Definitive Reasons You Should Go To The Er For Stomach Pain

    Before we get into cases that require some interrogation of whether or not you should go to the ER, its important to cover those cases of stomach pain that, without question, require emergency medical assessment and treatment. If you meet any of the following conditions and youre experiencing severe stomach pain, seek medical attention immediately.

    When Should I Go To The Er For Abdominal Pain

    How do you know when stomach pain is serious? If you are having any doubt about the type of chest and abdominal pain that you are experiencing or your chest pain includes any of the following symptoms, please call 911 immediately.

    • Chest pain that spreads to your jaw, left arm, or back
    • A sudden feeling of pressure, squeezing, tightness, or crushing under your breastbone
    • Nausea, dizziness, rapid heart rate or rapid breathing, confusion, ashen color, or excessive sweating
    • Very low blood pressure or very low heart rate
    • Sudden sharp chest pain with shortness of breath, especially after a long period of inactivity

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    Is It Appendicitis Or Stomach Pain

    There are several factors and causes to stomach pain making it difficult to decide whether going to the ER or not is needed. It is recommended you go to the nearest emergency room as soon as you notice warning signs or new or worsening pain in the lower right part of your abdomen .

    The appendix is a small pouch attached to the large intestine on the lower right side of our abdomen. If it becomes inflamed and filled with pus, it can spread throughout your organs and block areas inside your appendix, also known as an appendicitis.

    The most common warning signs and symptoms of appendicitis include:

    • Loss of appetite
    • Lack of energy

    Signs Of A Heart Attack

    When to go to the ER for stomach pain

    Watch for these symptoms, which you may experience in addition to or instead of chest pain:

    Symptoms of Heart Attack

    • Flushing or breaking out into a cold sweat
    • Nausea or vomiting
    • Numbness, pain, prickling or other sensations in the back, one or both arms, jaw, neck or stomach
    • Severe lightheadedness or dizziness
    • Squeezing, tightness, burning, uncomfortable pressure or pain in the center of the chest
    • Sudden aching in one or both arms
    • Sudden fatigue

    Often, over the course of several minutes, chest pain builds gradually and radiates to other areas of the upper body, such as your neck, throat, teeth, arms and shoulders. Its important to note that sometimes patients will have only upper stomach pain, or pain between the shoulder blades as their only symptom. Chest pain is often worsened by exertion and relieved by rest.

    Elderly patients and those with diabetes often have symptoms that are different from everyone else.

    If youre worried that you might be having a heart attack, call 911 immediately. We recommend that you dont drive yourself have someone else drive you to the ER. The ambulance provides medics and equipment to provide immediate treatment. If the chest pain is the result of some other cause, dont feel bad about calling for helpits always better to be safe than sorry. In fact, chest pain is the second most common complaint of patients seeking treatment at emergency departments in the US.

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    When Does Stomach Pain Warrant A Trip To Urgent Care

      The feeling that something isnt right with your stomach is a common complaint shared by virtually everyone. Sometimes, you know the cause of your discomfort, such as overindulgence in a holiday meal or a reaction to medication. Occasionally, the source of pain is a mystery, but the symptoms pass quickly.

      Persistent stomach pain is out of the ordinary. Pain might be severe, sharp, or long-lasting, and you may wonder if its time to seek urgent care for your condition. When you make that call, contact American River Urgent Care in Orangevale, California.

      As an urgent care and walk-in clinic, theyre well-suited to review your symptoms and diagnose your stomach issue. Understanding more about stomach pain and its causes can help you to know when its time to make the call.

      When Do Abdominal Pains Warrant A Trip To The Er

      Abdominal pain is so common, and everyday concerns, like gas, can sometimes cause such severe pain that its hard to know whether to seek emergency care or not. When symptoms such as severe pain, fever, and vomiting develop, its time to get immediate medical help.

      If youre not sure whether your abdominal pain is serious, call the team at River Oaks ER in Houston. By asking just a few questions, they can quickly determine whether your abdominal pain needs emergency attention.

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      Abdominal Pain Accompanied By Additional Serious Symptoms

      If you find these serious symptoms accompanying your abdominal pain experience, then its ideal to visit an emergency room instead of an urgent care center:

      • Abdominal issues and bleeding while expectant
      • Severe pain with a fever above 102°F
      • Abdominal pain accompanied by the passing of bloody or black stool or the vomiting of blood
      • Chest tightness and/or shortness of breath
      • Concentrated, sudden, and severe abdominal pain accompanied by the loss of consciousness
      • Abdominal pain accompanied by uncontrollable vomiting and chest pain

      If youre experiencing moderate to mild pain resulting from non-serious abdominal pain causes then you can visit an urgent care center. This will be ideal if youre not experiencing any accompanying serious symptoms. Non-serious abdominal pain causes, in this case, may include menstrual cramps, constipation, gas, acid reflux, gastroenteritis, and I.B.S among others.

      Symptoms That Warrant A Trip To The Er

      When should you go to the er with stomach pain?

      It can be hard to tell when your best bet is to rush to the emergency room.

      When you wake up in the middle of the night with an alarming symptommaybe it’s a high fever or splitting headacheit’s hard to know whether to rush to the emergency room or not. You don’t want to overact, but you definitely don’t want to underreact either. So how do you know when that stomach pain needs to be treated ASAP or if that numb feeling can wait until morning to deal with? We spoke to Ryan Stanton, MD, a board-certified emergency physician and spokesman for the American College of Emergency Physicians to find out.

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      Abdominal Pain And Preexisting Conditions

      Stomach and abdominal pain may be an indication of a more serious issue for individuals with certain medical conditions. If you have any of these medical conditions in combination with severe abdominal pain, you should visit an emergency department immediately:

      • Individuals ages 45 years old or older experiencing upper abdominal pain or tightness in the chest
      • Individuals who have undergone gastric bypass surgery
      • Individuals who recently had endoscopy or abdominal surgery
      • Women who are pregnant or who could be pregnant

      When To Seek Immediate Medical Attention

      Get medical help immediately if:

      • You have abdominal pain that is very sharp, severe, and sudden.
      • You also have pain in the chest, neck, or shoulder.
      • Youre vomiting blood, have bloody diarrhea, or have black, tarry stools
      • You have a high fever.
      • Youre having difficulty breathing.
      • You develop consistent nausea and/or vomiting.
      • Your abdomen is stiff, hard, and tender to the touch.
      • You cant move your bowels, especially if youre also vomiting

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      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.

      Your Stomach Pain Is Accompanied By Other Severe Symptoms

      Abdominal Pain When To Go To ER

      When severe stomach pain isnt your only symptom, that increases the likelihood that you are suffering from a serious medical condition. Symptoms to be concerned about include but are not limited to:

      • Bloody diarrhea
      • Bloody or burning urine
      • Bowel movements accompanied by vomiting
      • Chest pain or pressure
      • Coughing up or vomiting blood
      • Diarrhea lasting more than 5 days
      • Difficulty Breathing
      • Inability to pass a stool
      • Neck pain

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      When To Go To The Er For Stomach Pain

      Abdominal Pain

      When youre really not feeling well, its natural to wonder when to go to the ER for stomach pain. Since stomach pain is so common, however, many people struggle to make this call.

      So, how do you know when stomach pain is serious enough for a trip to the ER?

      Complete Care to help answer this question. No more second-guessing when to go to the ER for stomach pain. Learn exactly which scenarios might necessitate a trip to the emergency room and which you can likely handle at home.

      Emergency Care May Be Necessary If You Are Experiencing The Following Symptoms

      If the abdominal pain is severe and unrelenting, your stomach is tender to the touch, or if the pain extends to your back, you should immediately visit the closest emergency department. You should also seek emergency care if severe stomach pain is accompanied by any of the following symptoms:

      • A feeling of lightheadedness or that you could faint
      • Dark or black stool
      • Difficulty breathing or chest pain
      • Fever
      • Unable to eat without vomiting
      • Vomiting blood

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      When To Take Your Child To The Er For Abdominal Pain

      Most children experience abdominal pain at one time or another. In some circumstances, this pain can be a simple reaction to food and activity or a symptom of stomach flu or food poisoning. In other cases, stomach pain can indicate a larger issue. It is important for parents to be able to recognize the symptoms that may indicate that a child’s pain is severe enough to require an emergency department visit.

      Serious Recent Procedures Or Diagnoses

      Having Abdominal Pains? When You Should Go To The ER

      Some abdominal issues causes may result from recent abdominal medical procedures such as surgery to the appendix or severe medical conditions such as a ruptured appendix, cancer, cardiac conditions, or organ failure. For instance, if you experience abdominal pain after a recent surgery, then constipation or infections may be the immediate problem. But the severity of the symptoms that you experience will determine whether you should visit the ER.

      If you experience abdominal discomfort and youve undergone the following procedures or diagnoses, then it may be prudent to promptly visit the ER instead of going to an urgent care clinic.

      • Recent surgery in the abdomen
      • Upper abdominal pain and chest tightness, especially if youre over 45 years old
      • If you have a history of cardiac problems such as stroke and heart attacks
      • If youve undergone a recent gastric bypass surgery
      • If youve undergone a recent upper endoscopy or colonoscopy

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      You Have Experienced Severe Abdominal Trauma

      You see this phrase abdominal trauma thrown around a lot when discussing when to go to the ER for stomach pain, but rarely is it explained. Abdominal trauma typically occurs as a result of an accident, such as a car crash or a sports injury. It can involve a severe compression or displacement of the internal organs, such as when a seatbelt strains against your stomach in a car accident.

      This type of abdominal trauma can also be caused by physical abuse. Finally, abdominal trauma can also be the result of penetrating wounds to the stomach, including knife and gun wounds.

      If you have recently been the victim of abdominal trauma and are experiencing stomach pains, now is not likely the best time to question when to go to the ER for abdominal pain. Seek treatment immediately.

      How Do I Know When To Go To The Er

      Since so many other symptoms can cause stomach pain, it can be difficult to decide whether a trip to the ER is necessary or not. If your pain is severe or chronic, or you begin to have new onset pain, this is most likely a sign of a more serious medical problem.

      When you arrive at ER of Texas in Highland Village, Little Elm, Hurst, Colleyville, Hillcrest, Texoma, Uptown, Mansfield, and Dallas TX surrounding communities, you will be seen by one of our highly experienced and knowledgeable physicians. We will work closely to help you determine the severity if your case to come up with the best treatment plan. If you believe you have symptoms of appendicitis or experiencing chronic stomach pain, you can also contact your primary care physician or a local urgent care center or ER.

      At ER of Texas, we are happy to speak to you on the phone and provide you with more information and resources. today at to learn more.


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