Abdominal / Stomach Pain: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment Options
Abdominal or stomach pain is the pain that takes place between the chest and pelvis.
Stomach pain is slightly different from abdominal pain, as during stomach pain you have stomach ache which could be cured easily by intake of some home remedies whereas during abdominal, your affected pain area could vary from chest to pelvis, or belly area.
If it is in case you have mild abdominal pain or stomach pain it can be cured by home remedies.
Or if you find severe or chronic symptoms, it can also be a sign of more serious underlying medical conditions, including cancer or organ failure.
Immediate medical treatment is needed for all of sudden and severe or long-lasting abdominal pain, as our abdominal is the house for many other organs like Muscles,
blood vessels, connective tissues and many other organs which we will discuss further in detail.
What are the Causes, Signs & Symptoms of Abdominal / Stomach pain?
The most common cause of abdominal pain is digestion problem. Discomfort or irregularities in any organ or part of the abdomen can cause pain that affects the entire area.
The abdomen contains many important organs like:
- Blood vessels
- Connective tissues
- Small and large intestines
- The appendix
These are all organs in our digestive system, but the pain can also be in our abdominal wall, the outer shell (skin, muscles) of our abdomen and sometimes, the pain that you feel in your belly that might come from somewhere else, that could be chest, pelvis or back.
Many different conditions can cause abdominal pain. In any case, rather than delaying, waiting, checking for more symptoms, it’s better to be getting cured, rather than diagnosing at a last moment. As per your health sensitivity, understand to have early check up, or else if you don’t find it serious.
Causes Of Stomach pain
Stomach pain could be due to any of these causes, incase if you observe slight pains like:
- Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
- Food allergies or intolerance (such as lactose intolerance)
- Food poisoning
- Stomach flu / virus
- Mild or severe pain
- Dull or sharp pain
- Burning or achy.
- Crampy or colicky.
- Constant or intermittent.
- Peptic ulcer
- Fecal impaction
- Intestinal obstruction
- Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis
- Urinary tract infection (UTI)
- Celiac disease
- Strained or pulled abdominal muscle
Other possible causes could include:
- Abdominal aortic aneurysm (bulging and weakening of the major artery in the body)
- Bowel blockage or obstruction
- Cancer (pancreatic, stomach, or liver), colon (large bowel), and other organs
- Cholecystitis (inflammation of the gallbladder) with or without gallstones
- Decreased blood supply to the intestines (ischemic bowel)
- Diverticulitis (inflammation and infection of the colon)
- Heartburn, indigestion, or gastroesophageal reflux (GERD)
- Inflammatory bowel disease (Crohn disease or ulcerative colitis)
- Kidney stones
- Muscle strain
- Pancreatitis (swelling or infection of the pancreas)
- Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID)
- Ruptured ovarian cyst
- Severe menstrual cramps
- Tubal (ectopic) pregnancy
- Urinary tract infections (UTI)
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Symptoms and signs
- Severe pain.
- Bloody stools.
- Persistent nausea and vomiting.
- Weight loss.
- Skin that appears yellow.
- Severe tenderness when you touch your abdomen.
- Swelling of the abdomen.
What are the types of abdominal pain & where all it can be affected?
Mainly four types of abdominal pain occurs:
Since, abdomen is the house to many organs, doctors would like to identify and elaborate to which part of the body or organ has got affected with abdominal pain. To have a simple understanding of the abdominal pain region, he or she could divide the areas and focus on the suffered area. As it will help you understand which are or are affected and need treatment. The division could be in this form:
Right upper quadrant - Your upper right abdomen contains liver, gallbladder and bile ducts organs. Your right kidney is in the back. The first sections of your small and large intestines also pass through. Upper right abdominal pain is most likely related to be liver disease or gallbladder disease, such as:
- Hepatitis (alcoholic, toxic, metabolic, viral or autoimmune).
- Cholecystitis (gallbladder inflammation).
- Bile duct cancer, stones and strictures.
- Gallbladder cancer.
- Liver cancer.
- It could also be a localized problem in your duodenum, ascending colon or right kidney, such as a:
- Kidney infection.
- Kidney stone.
- Duodenal ulcer.
- Large bowel obstruction.
Left upper quadrant - Your upper left abdomen contains your stomach, pancreas and spleen organs. Your left side kidney is in back of your abdominal cavity, and your heart and left lung are right above it.
Upper left abdominal pain could mean:
- Pancreatitis (inflamed pancreas)
- Pancreatic cancer
- Splenomegaly (enlarged spleen)
- Stomach ulcer
- Bile reflux
- Stomach cancer
- Kidney infection
- Kidney stone
If the pain is referred from your chest, it could be from:
- Non Cardiac chest pain
- Heart attack
- Pulmonary embolism
Lower abdomen - small intestine and large intestine has Lower abdomen area affected, due to Gastrointestinal pain or it could also be related to your ureters, ovaries or uterus.
Abdominal causes include:
- Irritable bowel syndrome
- Functional dyspepsia
- Inflammatory bowel disease (Crohn’s, ulcerative colitis)
- Large or small bowel obstruction
- Small intestine cancer
- Colon cancer
- Abdominal aortic aneurysm
- Mesenteric lymphadenitis
- Intestinal (mesenteric) is chemic syndrome
- Kidney stones
Pain referred from the pelvic organs could be due to:
- Ovarian cysts
- Pelvic inflammatory disease
- Ectopic pregnancy
- Ovarian cancer
- Uterine cancer
Right lower quadrant - Pain that is specified in your lower right abdomen may be related to your appendix. It could be inflammation (appendicitis) or more rarely, appendix cancer.
Other, general causes of stomach pain include:
- Stress (psychosomatic pain)
- Visceral hypersensitivity
- Abdominal bloating
- Traumatic injuries
- Muscle strain
Left lower quadrant - Pain that is specified in your lower left abdomen is most often related to diverticulosis and diverticulitis of the colon. Diverticula (small outpouchings in the bowel wall) can occur throughout your colon, but they usually develop in the lower left part. The lower left quadrant of the abdomen contains the transverse, descending, and sigmoid sections of the colon; part of the small intestine; the ureter of the left kidney; and the iliac fossa (part of the hip bone and pelvis). The iliac fossa is a gateway to the reproductive organs in both men and women.
Also Read : Urinary Tract Infection | Causes, Symptoms & Treatment
How to describe abdominal pain?
General Pain - this means that half of your abdominal area, and especially affected in the stomach with viruses, indigestion, or gas could be the chances of your pain.
Localized Pain - Pain occurs or experienced in organ areas of your abdomen, and is locally a problem with an organ like your stomach, appendix, or gallbladder as the cause of your pain.
Cramping - This type of pain has in and out ways open means it comes and goes, or changes in its severity or perceived position in your abdomen. Cramping is rarely serious and is typically due to gas, passing a stool or women going through menstruation pain.
Colicky Pain - Similarly, like cramping, This type of pain has in and out ways open means it comes and goes, but tends to be severe and have sudden start and end. It’s typical of kidney stones or gallstones as the cause of your pain.
When to visit the Doctor?
Immediate consult doctor, if your pain is unexplained, difficult to handle pain or severe, or if you have been injured or are pregnant or if you find any of these symptoms:
- Continuous fever
- Continuous nausea or vomiting
- Blood in your stools, urine or vomit
- Swelling and tenderness to the touch
- Jaundice (yellowing of the eyes and skin)
- Pain in any other part of your body
- Shortness in breath or finding difficulty in breathing
Common causes, such as gas and indigestion, menstrual cramps, or even food poisoning and the flu could be unbearable and sometimes stomach pain also could be a sign of an unsuspected or serious condition.
Who all might be affected by Abdominal / Stomach pain?
Mostly everyone goes through the Abdominal / Stomach pain at some point of time in life. Most of the time, it’s not worth it to be serious:
For instance - you might face very bad abdominal pain, if you have gas or stomach cramps due to viral gastroenteritis. However, fatal conditions, such as colon cancer or early appendicitis, may only cause mild pain or no pain.
Treatment of Abdominal / Stomach Pain and How Can It Be treated?
Stomach pain has a wide variety of causes and treatments. Some conditions, such as gallstones or appendicitis, may require surgery. Others, such as ulcers or infections, can be treated with medicine and sometimes you may just have to get through a bout of stomach flu or a kidney stone until it passes.
The treatment for abdominal pain depends on its cause. Depending on the type of cause of your pain, the best course of treatment may involve self-care measures, over-the-counter or prescription medications, or procedures including drug injections or surgery. If you don’t know what’s causing your abdominal pain, it’s important to find out, especially, if it doesn’t give you relief on its own or by using some home remedies. Remember that even mild cases can be serious. However, if you have a pretty good idea that your stomach ache is related to digestion, some basic home treatment you can apply for yourself:
Self-Care Basic Measures can be implied on:
Mild abdominal pain due to digestive upset may respond to short-term self-care measures such as the following:
- Avoid solid foods till you feel better or curated
- Depend upon water or clear fluids
- Resting until you feel better
- Avoid dairy products, citrus fruits, fatty foods, tomato products, caffeine, alcohol, and carbonated beverages
- Eat easy to digest foods, like crackers, rice, bananas, or applesauce
- Don’t take aspirin, ibuprofen, or other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) for abdominal pain, since these medications can irritate your stomach and actually increase your pain, notes Kaiser Permanente.
- Home remedies are also helpful, try licorice for gas, ginger for indigestion, or peppermint to help relax your intestinal muscles.
- Generally, it’s not safe to take any medicines for abdominal pain without any doctor’s consultation, since some common drugs for pain can spoil your digestive tract and make your pain worse.
- If already you are undergoing any health issues or problems with medications, than immediately consult doctors as per your live condition and status, they would consider every prescription & give treatment as per that and he/she might suggest some of the process given below:
- Drugs to treat gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
- Antibiotics to treat infection
- Drugs to reduce inflammation
- Primary treatments for inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
Procedures and Surgery
In rare cases, office procedures or surgery may be needed to effectively treat your abdominal pain. These procedures may include the following:
- Injection of a numbing agent
- Corticosteroid injections
- Hernia repair surgery
- Alternative and Complementary Therapies
Some therapies can be suggested based on your abdominal pain and could be cured without any surgeries.
Sometimes medications are not needed, sometimes immediate self-care can cure major health issues. There is no doubt, when we say “health is wealth”, as everything is good when our health is good. Incase, if anyone feels these kinds of symptoms or causes. Don’t wait for anything, you can immediately reach out to Medrec Hospital. Medrec has free counseling sessions, they are available 24 x 7 with all facilties near by you all. The good news is that they are even available on virtual mode to keep you motivated, for counselling by understanding what kind of problem you are going through. Don’t hesitate to make an appointment, calls or use online facility. In case if you find any of your friends, colleagues or relatives going through any kind of health problems, suggest them to go through Medrec Hospitals. They are specialized in many more treatments like Urology, Paediatrics, Mental Health, Gynaecologist & Obstetrician,
General Physician, kidney stones, etc, and they do have an expertise team available for you all health problems 24 x 7. MedRec Hospital and Research Centre is located in Jehanabad, Bihar & for more information you can contact us @+91 89686 77907.
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