Abdominal Pain (Causes, Remedies, Treatment) (cont.)

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What are the causes of abdominal pain?

There are several causes of abdominal pain or discomfort. The following are lists of causes of abdominal pain (not all inclusive), grouped into the area of the abdomen were patients often say their pain is mainly localized:

Upper abdominal pain (right, left, both sides, center, or pelvic indicated by R, L, B, C or P)-

Readers should note that many causes of perceived abdominal pain do not come from sites in the abdomen. This is especially evident with upper abdominal pain that occurs in an organ and/or organ systems close to the upper abdomen like the lower part of lungs (pneumonia) or occasionally heart problems [angina, heart attack] especially in women).

Lower abdominal pain (right, left, both sides, center or pelvic indicated by R, L, B, C, P)

Unfortunately, some of the above causes are not well localized and the patients only say the pain is "'everywhere." A significant number of patients have this diffuse pain and yet may have a cause that is usually localized in other patients (for example, appendicitis, diverticulitis and others). However, there are causes that result in diffuse abdominal pain:

The above lists are examples of many (not all) causes of abdominal pain. The doctor makes use of the location, type, and intensity of pain to try to arrive at a diagnosis. For example, if an older patient has acute pain (a few hours) that is relatively constant, located in the left and or center of the lower abdomen with pain score of 9 out of 10, that is sharp or tearing, the doctor would likely place a thoracic aortic aneurysm high on the list of suspected causes.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 9/30/2013

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