• Monday - Friday
    9:00 - 18:00
  • Saturday - Sunday
    10:00 - 14:00
Causes of Abdominal Pain and How You can Get it Treated Soon
Causes of Abdominal Pain and How You can Get it Treated Soon

Causes of Abdominal Pain and How You can Get it Treated Soon

Abdominal pain, also known as a stomachache, usually occurs between the chest and pelvic areas that may be crampy, dull, achy, sharp or intermittent. Major organs located in the abdomen are the following:

  • Large and small intestines.
  • Kidneys.
  • A part of the large intestine called appendix.
  • Spleen.
  • Gallbladder.
  • Liver.
  • Pancreas.
  • Stomach.

Causes of Abdominal Pain

The main causes are abnormal growths, infection, intestinal disorders, inflammation and obstruction (blockage).The infections in the blood, intestines and throat may cause bacteria that can enter into the digestive tract thus, leading to abdominal pain.Other causes of abdominal pain are diarrhea, constipation, acid reflux, vomiting, gastroenteritis and stress.

  • Diarrhea.
  • Acid reflux.
  • Gastroenteritis(stomach flu).
  • Vomiting.
  • Stress.

Certain diseases that can affect the digestive system may cause severe abdominal pain. The most common ones include:

  • Crohn’s disease which is an inflammatory bowel disease.
  • Gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD.
  • Irritable bowel syndrome or spastic colon (a disorder that leads to abdominal pain, cramping, and change in bowel movements).
  • Lactose intolerance (the inability to digest lactose, the sugar found in milk and other milk products).

Causes of severe abdominal pain are the following:

  • Near-rupture or organ rupture such as appendicitis or burst appendix.
  • Gallbladder stones known as gallstones.
  • Kidney infection.
  • Kidney stones.

Different Kinds of Abdominal Pain

Abdominal pain may be categorised in the form of localised, cramp-like, or colicky.

  • Localised pain is restricted to one area of the abdomen which is usually caused by problems in a specific organ. Common cause of localised pain is stomach ulcers.
     
  • Cramp-like pain might be associated with constipation, diarrhea, bloating or flatulence. In case of women, it may be related to miscarriage,menstruation or complications in the female reproductive organs.
     
  • Colicky pain is a symptom of severe conditions such as kidney stones or gallstones. This pain occurs suddenly and may appear like severe muscle spasm.

Location of Pain Within the Abdomen

The pain that gets generalized throughout the abdomen may indicate:

  • Crohn’s disease.
  • Appendicitis or inflammation of the appendix.
  • Traumatic injury.
  • Urinary tract infection.
  • Irritable bowel syndrome.
  • The flu.

The pain focused in the lower abdomen denotes:

  • Appendicitis.
  • Ectopic pregnancy (a pregnancy that occurs outside the womb).
  • Intestinal obstruction.

In women, the pain in reproductive organs of lower abdomen may occur due to:

  • Ovarian cysts.
  • Severe menstrual pain known as dysmenorrhea.
  • Fibroids.
  • Endometriosis.
  • Miscarriage.
  • Ectopic pregnancy.
  • Pelvic inflammatory disease.

Upper abdominal painmay take place due to:

  • Gallstones.
  • Hepatitis or liver inflammation.
  • Pneumonia.
  • Heart attack.

Pain in the center of the abdomen may take place from:

  • Appendicitis.
  • Injury.
  • Uremia
  • Gastroenteritis.

Lower left abdominal paincan take place by:

  • Crohn’s disease.
  • Cancer.
  • Kidney infection.
  • Ovarian cysts.
  • Appendicitis.

Upper left abdominal pain is usually caused by:

  • Enlarged spleen.
  • Kidney infection.
  • Heart attack.
  • Fecal impaction.
  • Injury.
  • Cancer.

Lower right abdominal painmay include:

  • Appendicitis.
  • Kidney infection.
  • Hernia.
  • Cancer.
  • Flu.

Upper right abdominal pain might occur due to:

  • Pneumonia.
  • Hepatitis.
  • Injury.
  • Appendicitis.

Fast facts on abdominal pain:

  • Digestive problems are usually considered to be themost common cause of abdominal pain.
  • Most cases can be resolved on their own without seeking for clinical assistance.
  • Intense or sudden pain requires immediate medical attention.
  • Over-the-counter medication may reduce the symptoms of mild abdominal pain.

When you Need to Visit the Private GP

Mild abdominal pain will go away without performing any treatments. There are some cases when abdominal pain may require seeing a private GP without delay. You need to seek for medical care when the pain becomes severe or you have any of the following:

  • High fever.
  • Bloody stools.
  • Vomiting up blood known as hematemesis.
  • Persistent nausea or vomiting.
  • Yellowing of the eyes or skin.
  • Severe tenderness or swelling of the abdomen.
  • Difficulty at the time of breathing.

Schedule an appointment with a private GP when you experience any of these symptoms:

  • Abdominal pain that lasts for more than 24 hours.
  • Burning sensation when urinating.
  • Prolonged constipation.
  • Fever.
  • Vomiting.
  • Loss of appetite.
  • Unexplained weight loss.

How to Diagnose the Cause of Abdominal Pain

The cause of abdominal pain may be diagnosed through different tests. Private doctor at Harley Street Clinic will perform a physical examination which includes pressing down gently on several areas of the abdomen to check for swelling and tenderness.

Other tests include the following:

  • Colonoscopy to look inside the colon and intestines.
  • Endoscopy to detect inflammation and abnormalities in the stomach and esophagus.
  • Upper GI which is a special X-ray test to check for the presence of ulcers, growths, blockages, inflammation and other abnormalities in the stomach.

How to Avoid Abdominal Pain

You can reduce the risk of developing abdominal pain by:

  • Eatinga well-balanced diet.
  • Drinking lots of water frequently.
  • Do your exercise regularly.
  • Eating short meals.

If you are having an intestinal disorder such as Crohn’s disease, then it is advised to follow the diet chart given by your private GP to minimise the discomfort and uneasiness. In case you have GERD, you should not eat within two hours of bedtime. When you lie down too quickly after eating, then this may cause abdominal pain and heartburn. So, you should wait for at least two hours after your food before lying down.