Feeling some discomfort in your stomach can happen at times, especially when you’ve eaten something you probably shouldn’t have. Often, this pain or discomfort is temporary and is no cause for alarm. But other times, it can be an indication of something more serious. But how do you know if your stomach pain warrants a trip to the doctor’s office?
When There Is Bloody Diarrhea
If you have bloody bowel movements that are accompanied by fever, weakness, and abdominal pain, you should see a doctor right away. This could indicate an intestinal disorder or an intestinal obstruction. Bloody diarrhea can also be caused by certain medications as well as bacterial, viral, or parasitic infections. Ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease, and diverticulitis are just a few of the more common causes of bloody diarrhea.
When There Is Bloody Vomiting
When you vomit blood or have blood mixed in your vomitus, it could indicate an ulcer, bleeding disorder, or tumor in the gastrointestinal tract. If you are experiencing this type of bleeding, you should see a doctor right away. You might also see your doctor if you have bleeding with your vomiting or diarrhea that doesn’t seem to stop or if you have prolonged bleeding.
When There Is a Change in Bowel Habits
Noticeable changes in bowel movements such as the onset of diarrhea or constipation could mean a variety of things. Diarrhea or constipation lasting over three days, accompanied by cramping or pain, could indicate a problem with the colon. You may also see your doctor if you are experiencing frequent diarrhea or constipation or if you see a change in your stool’s appearance.
There may be an underlying cause for the change in bowel habits, so it’s a good idea to get it checked out.
When There Is Abdominal Pain That Isn’t Relieved by Antacids
If you have stomach pain that is accompanied by bloating and flatulence, you may be able to relieve the symptoms by taking an antacid. But if you are experiencing persistent pain that is not relieved by an antacid, you should see your doctor. The pain could indicate an ulcer, gallbladder disease, irritable bowel syndrome, gastritis, or a more serious condition. The diagnosis and treatment of this type of pain may be very difficult to treat, especially if it is caused by a serious condition.
When the Stomach Pain Spreads to Your Back
Abdominal pain that spreads to the back could indicate pancreatitis, appendicitis, or a spasm of the intestine. If you are experiencing pain that goes from the lower right part of your abdomen to your back, you should call your doctor or go to the emergency room.
When an Abdominal Ache Lasts Over a Week
When you experience sharp and persistent abdominal pain that goes on for more than a week, you should see your doctor. This type of pain may indicate something serious like appendicitis or a hernia.
It’s often difficult to distinguish one type of abdominal pain from another. But knowing the signs and symptoms of severe pain that might require a trip to the doctor’s office can help you get the right treatment.
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