Do you suffer from stomach pain regularly?

Most of us have had a stomach ache at some point . But in reality, any organ in the abdomen could be the culprit, not just the stomach and each of these abdominal pain can have different causes.

What are the causes of stomach pain

We invite you to read some of the causes of stomach pain that, as we mentioned above, can be diverse , however, never stop doing the relevant tests by consulting the specialist you trust to clarify the picture.

Parasites

No one wants to think that stomach symptoms are due to a parasitic worm or other creature. But it happens.

There are many types of parasites, but the most common in North America are Giardia and Cryptosporidium, which can be obtained by swimming in contaminated pools or lakes or drinking contaminated water. (Or in some sprouts in raw cider). The small protozoan causes cramps, diarrhea, and nausea about 2 to 10 days after exposure (for Crypto) or 1 to 3 weeks later (for Giardia). Other types of parasites can be picked up in cooked or contaminated food.

Appendicitis

Most people who have appendicitis, an inflammation of the appendix, experience sudden pain that is bad enough to warrant a trip to the emergency room.

Appendicitis is more common in children and young adults (although it can occur in older adults) and usually begins with pain in the middle of the abdomen, progressing to the lower right part of the abdomen.

If the appendix is ​​not removed, it can rupture, leading to life-threatening peritonitis.

Stomach ulcers

Peptic ulcer disease, or ulcers in the stomach and duodenum (the first part of the small intestine), is a common source of abdominal pain , says Dr. Alaradi.

Stomach pain usually attacks the upper-middle abdominal area and sometimes occurs after meals , he adds. People with duodenal ulcers may wake up in the middle of the night due to pain.

Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs) and Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) bacteria are the main causes. Antibiotics and acid suppressing medications are often used to treat ulcers caused by bacteria.

Too much sugarless gum

If you consume too much sorbitol, which is found in some sugar-free products, it can cause pain and diarrhea. According to a 2008 article in BMJ, a 21-year-old woman had an 11-pound weight loss, abdominal pain, and diarrhea (as many as 12 bowel movements a day) from chewing about 16 gum a day.

A 46-year-old man had similar symptoms after chewing around sugar-free gum and eating 20 sweets containing sorbitol a day.

Stress

Stress can cause headaches, high blood pressure, insomnia, and yes, tummy troubles. Depression has been linked to digestive problems (including loss of appetite and weight loss), as well as irritable bowel syndrome. The relationship appears to go both ways, according to a study published in 2012 in the journal Gut.

In other words, depression can be the cause of stomach aches, but constant abdominal pain can just as easily lead to depression and anxiety.

Food poisoning

Food poisoning from viruses or bacteria can cause abdominal pain, along with diarrhea and vomiting. Many outbreaks of food poisoning have been seen in North America in recent years, including 20 people in 7 states who collected Salmonella from contaminated beef in 2011.

In rare cases, food poisoning can be serious and fatal. In general, the symptoms of food poisoning usually last about 1-2 days, says Dr. Alaradi.

However, if you have viral gastroenteritis , a stomach infection from food or someone else, it may last a bit longer.

Inflammatory bowel disease

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is inflammation inside the small or large intestine, Dr. Alaradi explains. It includes Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.

Inflammation from IBD can cause scarring and blockage, which can lead to abdominal pain along with diarrhea and rectal bleeding. The symptoms are chronic, but they can flare up and go away in cycles, making it sometimes difficult to diagnose.

IBD must be closely monitored, as it can lead to more serious problems, even cancer, later in life.

Irritable bowel syndrome

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is not the same as inflammatory bowel disease. Although IBS can also lead to chronic abdominal pain and changes in bowel movements (such as alternating constipation and diarrhea), it is not an inflammatory condition and never involves rectal bleeding, says Dr. Alaradi.

It generally affects more women than men, is considered less serious than IBD, and can be managed through the treatment of symptoms.

And unlike IBD, IBS never progresses into more serious conditions, such as cancer, says Dr. Alaradi.

Cancer

It is rare, but cancer in any of the organs located in the abdomen, liver, pancreas, stomach, gallbladder or ovaries, can cause stomach pain, but usually only in the later stages, says the Dr. Alaradi.

And there are usually other symptoms, such as loss of appetite, weight loss, persistent vomiting, persistent bloating of the abdomen, and recent changes in bowel habits. “If a person goes to the bathroom once a day and that has changed in the last few weeks to one every three or four days, it deserves attention,” says Dr. Alaradi.

By Dr. Eric Jackson

Dr. Eric Jackson provides primary Internal Medicine care for men and women and treats patients with bone and mineral diseases, diabetes, heart conditions, and other chronic illnesses.He is a Washington University Bone Health Program physician and is a certified Bone Densitometrist. Dr. Avery is consistently recognized in "The Best Doctors in America" list.

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