Abdominal PainPain in the abdomen is a common condition in both children and adults. Pain can be a result of a problem which occurred in the intestines, stomach, esophagus, liver, kidneys, spleen, gallbladder or appendix. Pain in the abdomen can be sharp and stabbing, or it can be dull and persistent. It may also be followed by other symptoms, such as bloating, nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, constipation, fever, and many others.
CausesThere are various causes of pain in the abdomen. The most common cause is indigestion, which is not considered to be a serious medical condition. Other common causes may include food poisoning, food allergies, injury or an inflammation of any organ in the abdominal area, such as pancreatitis or appendicitis. Pain in the abdomen can also be a consequence of chronic constipation, irritable bowel disease, ulcers, kidney stones or cancers. Many women feel abdominal pain before menstrual period or during the first days of period. Overweight and obese people may suffer from frequent pain in the abdomen because excess weight puts pressure on the stomach and abdominal walls. Stressful situations, anxiety or other emotional traumas can also cause abdominal pain. Many medications have pain in the abdomen as one of the side effects.
DiagnosisYou should seek medical help if the pain is severe, if your abdomen is very swollen and if you experience symptoms such as vomiting, blood in the stool, jaundice and if you feel any pain or tension in the chest. In order to determine the exact cause of the pain, your doctor will ask you about the other symptoms, the exact location of the pain and he/she will have to perform various tests. The tests may involve physical exam, CT scan, X-ray or ultrasound imaging, endoscopy and tests of the stool, urine and blood. You should inform your doctor about your eating habits and allergies. Also make sure you give the detailed description of your condition. Proper diagnose is important because the treatment depends on the underlying cause.
PreventionSome of the diseases which cause pain in the abdomen cannot be prevented, but proper eating habits and healthy lifestyle will help you with many problems which can lead to abdominal pain. You should not eat greasy and spicy food because it may cause indigestion and heartburn. You should eat plenty of fruits and vegetables, and you should have smaller meals more frequently. Also drink plenty of fluids, keep your weight normal and be physically active.