Abdominal Pain Causes

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Doctor's View on 7 Causes of Abdominal Pain

Comment by John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP

Some of these common causes of abdominal pain may sound familiar to you. These are seven common causes of abdominal pain.

  1. Appendicitis: This is an inflammation of the appendix, and symptoms you may experience are acute pain sometimes around the navel, but usually around the right lower part of the abdomen that often worsens over the first 48 hours. With this pain, you may not have an appetite, may have a fever, nausea, and may vomit.
  2. Gastroenteritis or stomach flu: This is usually caused by a virus. You may experience diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, fever, and abdominal pain.
  3. Constipation: Everyone has been constipated at some time in their life. There are many causes of constipation, but constipation can cause bloating and abdominal pain. If you do not have a bowel movement over a period of days, contact your doctor.
  4. Heartburn (GERD): Occurs when your stomach acid backs up into the esophagus. You may have symptoms like a burning sensation in the chest, stomach or chest pain, burning in the throat, difficulty swallowing, sore throat, or chronic cough.
  5. Pancreatitis: In pancreatitis, the inflammation of the pancreas will cause you upper abdominal pain that can last for days. It may radiate to the back, and you will by nauseated and may vomit. You also my feel restlessness and become agitated.
  6. Diverticulitis: This digestive disease that occurs when pouches (diverticula) form in the wall of the colon. Your symptoms may include cramping, bloating, flatulence (gas), and irregular bowel movements. The pain you may feel from diverticulitis is most often felt in the left lower part of the abdomen.
  7. Cancer: Cancer of any of the organs in the abdomen can cause pain. If you have cancer, the abdominal pain that accompanies cancer can be from the cancer itself, blockages caused by tumors, or related to the treatment for the cancer. If your cancer treatment involves chemotherapy, radiation, and medications; it can be difficult to eat, you may have a loss of appetite, and can be nauseated and vomit.

Of course, there are a lot of other common causes of abdominal pain like kidney stones, hernia, gallstones, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), cysts, and even poor diet. Tests including colonoscopy, endoscopy, MRI, CT scans, barium swallows and X-rays can help your doctor determine the cause of your abdominal pain.

Read what other causes of abdominal pain people are talking about!

Abdominal Pain Causes Resources

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Doctor written main article on Abdominal Pain

REFERENCES:

UpToDate. Differential diagnosis of abdominal pain in adults.

UpToDate. Management of acute viral gastroenteritis in adults.

UpToDate. Acid reflux gastrointestinal - gastrointestinal reflux in adults the basics.


Last Editorial Review: 7/12/2013 6:11:58 PM