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What are some Causes of Stomach Pain?

Excess gas can cause stomach pain.
An illustration of a human stomach.
Irritable bowel syndrome can cause stomach pain.
Young infants with stomach pain may be suffering from colic.
Appendicitis from an inflamed appendix can cause stomach pain.
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  • Written By: Margo Upson
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 19 June 2014
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Stomach pain is a common symptom of many different conditions, all causing discomfort in the abdominal cavity. It can come on suddenly, in the case of acute stomach pain, or build slowly, going from only mildly uncomfortable to very painful over the course of a few hours or days. Some stomach pain will go away on its own, while some pain may indicate a serious problem that will need medical treatment.

Some causes of stomach pain are very common, and not serious. These causes include a build-up of intestinal gasses, constipation, and the effects of eating a food that your stomach does not handle well, like processed cheeses or foods with a lot of grease. Lactose intolerance can cause abdominal pain, and so can food allergies or food poisoning. Young infants with a lot of stomach pain may be suffering from colic. The stomach flu, or bug, may also lead to stomach pain. Other common causes of pain in the stomach include heart burn or acid heartburn.

Another one of the causes of stomach pain is a problem with an abdominal organ. This may be from a kidney stone, gall stone, or ulcer. Stomach pain may also be a symptom of appendicitis or pancreatitis. In some cases, the pain may be caused by cancer in the stomach, intestines, colon, or pancreas. Cancer in the ovaries may also cause stomach pain.

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There are several diseases and disorders that are causes of stomach pain. These include Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) and Inflammatory Bowel Syndrome. Stomach pain may also be a symptom of shingles or Crohn’s Disease. In some cases, stomach pain could be a symptom of sickle cell anemia.

Acute, or sudden onset, stomach pain may be a sign of a serious medical condition. A blockage in the bowel, not allowing anything to go through, can cause a lot of pain. A bowel infarction, where a vein is blocked, is also very painful. The decreased blood flow to the bowel results in bowel death, which can be fatal if it is not diagnosed and corrected in time.

There are many causes of stomach pain, and it can be difficult to tell whether or not that pain is a symptom of something more serious. Most stomach pain is from a minor irritation, and will be gone within an few hours. If the pain gets worse, or does not go away after a day or two, it may be time to seek medical attention.

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Discuss this Article

anon356697
Post 4

My wife's stomach ache started with feeling a small ball in the stomach while now, after some weeks, it feels like a brick. All the time this has made her feel nauseous. Gastroscopy was ok, and so was the bloodwork (no inflammation or tumor). There is no tear in the diaphragm, but her belly seems to grow steadily. Does anybody have any ideas?

suntan12
Post 3

SurfNTurf - It is really hard to eat slow when you are hungry, so I can understand having that problem.

I just have to say that some causes of lower stomach pain might be more serious especially if it is accompanied by an type of bleeding.

My mother suffered from lower abdominal pain that was so severe that she had to go to the hospital. The doctors detected that the source of her pain was related to uterine cancer.

If your stomach pain symptoms do not go away see a doctor. Uterine cancer has a 97% survival rate if caught early.

surfNturf
Post 2

Comfyshoes - I didn’t know that. I think that when I eat Mexican food or a lot of vegetables my stomach gets bloated. It is really an uncomfortable feeling that usually accompanies gas, but is not usually very painful.

I know that Beano helps to lessen the impact of these gassy foods and usually makes me feel better almost immediately.

I think that when you eat too fast you tend to swallow more air that leads to potential gas pain too.

If you take the time to chew your food slowly it could also aid your digestion and eliminate the potential for gas pain. I have a problem with eating too fast especially if I am hungry so I have to work on this.

comfyshoes
Post 1

I sometimes develop pain in my lower abdomen that feels more like a cramp. If I eat something that does not agree with me I also tend to get diarrhea along with the abdominal pain.

This tells me that my stomach pain symptoms are related to a virus that is slowly working its way out of my system. I know some people complain of irritable bowel syndrome which are causes of lower stomach pain in children and adults.

They say that people with irritable bowel syndrome should avoid chocolate, large meals, alcohol, and drinks containing caffeine.

They also say that an increase in fiber along with medications such as dicycolomine and hyoscyamine help control muscles spasms and should be taken thirty minutes before eating.

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