Abdominal pain can be very difficult to diagnose and, therefore, treat. Abdominal pain, such as pelvic pain, can vary in sensation and intensity. It can be sharp, dull, aching, cramping, localized or diffuse. It can be exacerbated or eased by activity, or remain consistent despite any home interventions that are attempted.
Complicating the diagnosing and treatment of pelvic pain is the number of organs that can cause abdominal pain. The urinary tract, reproductive organs, bowels, liver, gallbladder, and pancreas are all potential causes of abdominal pain. Symptoms that can be experienced include gas, bloating, indigestion and heartburn, diarrhea, cramping, constipation, or pain and tenderness.
Treating abdominal pain requires skilled, experienced, and knowledgeable physicians who understand the intricacies of abdominal pain along with the best methods available to treat it. After identifying the cause through diagnostic tools such as X-ray, CT scans, or MRI, for example, the underlying cause of pain must be addressed. This can range from inflammation, scar tissue, or lifestyle.
Fortunately, there are options to treat or block the pain signal from such types of pain. If you or a loved one is experiencing chronic or nagging abdominal pain which is impacting the quality of your life, please call Metro Denver Sport, Spine, and Pain Management for evaluation and treatment options.
Frequently Asked Questions
Pain in the abdominal area is often associated with the organs located there, including your stomach, intestines, liver, gallbladder, and pancreas, among others.
In addition to this pain, which may be dull, achy, or sharp, you may experience additional abdominal pain symptoms like:
- Gas and indigestion
- Abdominal pain can also manifest as chest pain. In some cases, this chest pain can be significant.
Abdominal pain results from a range of issues, the most common of which include problems like:
- Inflammation of an organ (like appendicitis, colitis, or diverticulitis)
- Distention of an organ (such as intestine obstructions or bile duct blockages)
- Loss of blood to an organ (like with ischemic colitis)
- Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and other bowel issues
- Infections (such as urinary tract infections or kidney infections)
- Abdominal pain can also result from dehydration, stomach viruses, and abnormal growths.
Before your doctor at Metro Denver Pain Management can treat your abdominal pain, he must find its underlying cause. To determine why you’re in pain, he performs a thorough physical examination and asks you questions about your symptoms, including when they occur and what, if anything, has helped to relieve your pain.
Your doctor may also order testing to either rule out or confirm certain problems. Depending on your specific case, he may recommend blood tests, urine tests, or a barium swallow. In other cases, imaging tests may be necessary to find the right diagnosis, and your doctor may request an X-ray, ultrasound, or CT scan. Sometimes an exploratory endoscopy confirms the problem.
Once the issue is known, your doctor may use medications to relieve inflammation or suggest lifestyle changes, such as cutting spicy foods, alcohol, or caffeine from your diet. You may need surgery to remove polyps or gallstones or correct the functioning of one of your organs.
In some cases, you may need to have an organ removed. This is most often when abdominal pain results from issues with your appendix, gallbladder, or pancreas.