Abdominal Pain: Cases when not to dismiss it as gas
Abdominal pain is a common complaint among men and women of all ages. It is often dismissed as trivial, and almost never considered as warranting a rush into an emergency room – especially if it passes with rest.
However, there are cases when abdominal pain should not be dismissed so casually, since non-treatment can result in potentially fatal consequences.
Here are a few of the common causes of abdominal pain requiring emergency medical attention – and no, none of these conditions are just plain gas.
Also known as a tubal pregnancy because it occurs in the fallopian tubes instead of the uterus, an ectopic pregnancy is a medical emergency. Keep in mind that the fertilized egg will be unable to grow, much less thrive, anywhere else other than the uterus, so surgery is almost always needed to remove it.
Otherwise, pregnant women experiencing ectopic pregnancy are at great risk for hemorrhage and shock, among other serious complications. The risks associated with this illness are so great, that ectopic pregnancy has become the leading cause for maternal deaths in the first trimester.
Aside from pain on one side of the lower abdomen, which is likened to a severe cramp coupled with tenderness and radiation to the entire belly, other warning signs of an ectopic pregnancy are:
- Swelling of breasts, nausea, and missed period, all of which are signs of early pregnancy
- Dizziness or fainting
- Increase in pain with any movement
Immediate medical attention may lessen the risks of life-threatening complications, as well as increase the chances for future normal pregnancy by protecting future fertility.
Both children and adults are affected by appendicitis, which is an infection of the appendix, a vestigial part of the colon that can be inflamed by trapped food or feces.
The warning signs of appendicitis include:
- Slight discomfort around the navel, which progresses into a severe and sharp pain in the lower right side of the abdomen
- Lost appetite
- Nausea and/or vomiting
- Low-grade fever
- Preference for lying in a fetal position (as a straight posture increases pain)
Immediate medical care can prevent serious complications arising from a burst appendix. Your doctor may recommend surgery to remove the inflamed appendicitis, which can limit infection.
Other possible causes of abdominal pain are gallstones (characterized by severe pain on the abdomen’s upper right side, radiating to the back), bladder infections (characterized by a frequent urge to urinate, or pain in the lower abdomen), and kidney stones (characterized by sudden, intense pain on one side of the back, usually near the waist).
Don’t wait for more severe pain or blood! If you experience any signs of appendicitis, getting to the emergency room as soon as possible may help you avoid complications, and regain your health.
For more information on what Healthpointe can do for you call 888-719-8448 or walk in to any of our location such as, the Temecula office by Murrieta, Fallbrook, Wildomar, Canyon Lake, and Sun City.
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