The abdomen (commonly called as belly) is the anatomical space between thorax and pelvis. It contains all digestive organs including stomach, small and large intestines, pancreas, liver, and gallbladder. Abdominal pain can arise from the organs within or adjacent to belly. It can be a cramp, achy, intermittent or even sharp.
Many factors and conditions can cause abdominal pain or stomach ache. However, the main reasons are inflammation of the abdominal tissues, abnormal growths, distention of any organ within, or by the deficient blood supply to any of the organs of the abdomen. For instance, you might have food poisoning or allergies, indigestion, constipation or, if you’re a woman, menstrual cramps. In certain other cases, abdominal pain may arise due to digestive disorders such as gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), Crohn’s disease and lactose intolerance.
Symptoms associated with abdominal pain include bloating, belching, indigestion, constipation, diarrhea, heartburn, loss of appetite, dehydration, a rise in body temperature, vomiting. In severe conditions, bloody stools, persistent vomiting, swelling of the abdomen etc are seen.
Doctors diagnose abdominal pain by:
Laboratory tests for bacterial or viral infection
Imaging tests - MRI, X-Rays, Ultrasound scan
Seek medical care immediately, If the pain doesn’t go away or keeps coming back. Treatment depends on the cause and can range from analgesic to surgery.