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Abdominal Pain

Abdominal pain can be felt anywhere between thorax ( chest ) and pelvis.  Pain could be mild, moderate or severe. It may be dull or acute.

Almost everyone has experienced abdominal pain, one time or other.  Most of the time, stomach pain is not serious, but severe abdominal pain is a cause of concern.  If pain starts suddenly and unexpectedly, it should be regarded as an emergency, and investigated accordingly.

References: www.nhs.uk 
www.nlm.nih.gov 
www.nlm.nih.gov 
www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov

Pain in abdomen can be of various intensities and nature. It can be:

  • Sharp, stabbing cramp like pain
  • Brief pain that may come or go
  • Pain associated with vomiting

Reference: www.nhs.uk

 

Various conditions are associated with abdominal pain . Causes of abdominal pain include:

  • Constipation
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Food allergy
  • Food poisoning
  • Menstrual pain

Sudden, severe abdominal pain:

  • Abdominal infection
  • Appendicitis
  • A perforated peptic ulcer
  • Gallstones
  • Kidney stones
  • Diverticulitis : Inflammation of small pouches that are part of the bowel

Other common causes in adults are:

  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Crohn's disease
  • Urinary tract infection
  • Long term Peptic ulcer
  • Constipation
  • Heartburn and acid reflux

Common Causes in children

  • Constipation
  • Urinary tract Infection
  • Anxiety
  • Heartburn and acid reflux

References: 
www.nlm.nih.gov 
www.nhs.uk

 

Generally abdominal pain goes with time, but if the pain does not subside, then one should seek medical help:

  • Abdominal discomfort that lasts 1 week or longer
  • Abdominal pain that does not improve in 24 - 48 hours, or becomes more severe and frequent and occurs with nausea and vomiting
  • Bloating that persists for more than 2 days
  • Burning sensation or increase in frequency on urination
  • Diarrhoea for more than 5 days
  • Fever (over 100°F for adults or 100.4°F for children) with pain
  • Prolonged poor appetite
  • Prolonged vaginal bleeding
  • Unexplained weight loss

Reference:  www.nlm.nih.gov

 

Generally, treatment for abdominal pain depends upon its cause.

  • Treatment usually is with medications for inflammation of Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) or Ulcers
  • Use antibiotics in case of infections
  • Modify your eating habits
  • Surgical treatment is indicated in conditions like appendicitis  or hernia (inguinal and umbilical)  

Seek doctors advice before going in for any treatment.

Reference: www.nlm.nih.gov

 

  • PUBLISHED DATE : May 30, 2015
  • PUBLISHED BY : NHP CC DC
  • CREATED / VALIDATED BY : NHP Admin
  • LAST UPDATED ON : Oct 23, 2015

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The content on this page has been supervised by the Nodal Officer, Project Director and Assistant Director (Medical) of Centre for Health Informatics. Relevant references are cited on each page.