Stomach ache

Abdominal pain in the upper abdominal region (upper abdominal pain) occurs between the chest and navel and can be caused by the disruption of various organs.
Many people suffer from abdominal pain at some point in their lives. According to research, 30% of adults occasionally experience stomach pain and cramps in the abdominal region.

However, one should always be aware that pain is an important signal that something is wrong.

There are a variety of possible ways to effectively treat stomach pain. There are some more serious symptoms that require medical care and require a doctor’s visit.

Self-treatment should be avoided if the pain is very severe, increases in intensity or occurs together with the following accompanying symptoms:

  • Weight loss
  • Intestinal bleeding
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Persistent vomiting


Abdominal pain in the upper abdomen

Reflux disease When food is transported from the esophagus to the stomach, it passes through the lower esophageal sphincter (esophageal sphincter), which is the junction of the esophagus and stomach. Dysfunction of this closure mechanism means spontaneous opening or incomplete closure, as a result of which stomach acid and stomach contents can rise into the esophagus.
Gastroesophageal reflux causes burning and pain in the upper part of the stomach.

Gastritis A burning sensation in the upper epigastric region is often triggered by gastritis
Gastritis is an inflammation of the gastric mucosa. Alcohol, caffeine, medications, and the habit of skipping meals may be responsible for the occurrence.

Diaphragmatic hernia (hiatal hernia)
hiatal hernia occurs when parts of the stomach pass through the diaphragm. A large hernia can cause heartburn because food and stomach acid enter the esophagus.
Upper stomach pain and heartburn are among the symptoms of a diaphragmatic hernia.

Angina pectoris
Angina is a pain in the chest triggered by a circulatory disorder of the heart.
Angina pectoris is not a disease, but the symptom of an existing heart disease, such as coronary artery disease (CHD).
According to the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute, angina pain is similar to the discomfort of a digestive disorder, such as pain and pressure in the upper abdomen.

Aneurysm of the abdominal aorta
Here, the pain in the middle upper abdomen sets in acutely and violently and radiates into the back.
The reason for this is dilation and rupture of the aorta – the large artery that carries blood from the heart to the whole body.
The aneurysm causes back pain, as well as central pain in the upper abdomen.
More commonly affected are people with high blood pressure, smokers and people who have had an aneurysm in the past.

It can be associated with dizziness and can cause the feeling of fainting or collapse when the aorta ruptures.
For diagnosis, an ultrasound scan or CT scan must be performed immediately in the emergency room.
Treatment is carried out by open surgery or endoscopic repair, when blood leaks but the artery has not yet ruptured.

inflammation of the pancreas (pancreatitis)
The pancreas is located just behind the stomach, near the upper section of the small intestine; there it secretes enzymes so that the food can be digested.
Pancreatitis occurs when the pancreas becomes inflamed; the enzymes are not secreted, but remain in the pancreas and damage the tissue (self-digestion). With a sudden onset, it is called acute pancreatitis, which provokes severe pain. Both acute and chronic pancreatitis cause pain in the upper abdomen, which can radiate to the back.

Splenic abscess
An abscess of the spleen is characterized by excessive accumulation of pus in the spleen.
The cause of this is a bacterial infection in the blood flow. This disease occurs mainly in people with weakened immune systems.
Symptoms include left-sided upper abdominal pain, fever, nausea, vomiting, etc.

Cancer of the liver and other abdominal organs Tumors in the upper abdomen are very common, including liver cancer. It can occur in hepatitis or by dysregulated cell growth in the liver.

Symptoms include: abdominal pain that can radiate to the right shoulder and back, ascites (fluid accumulation in the abdomen), loss of weight and appetitevomitingnauseafatigue, jaundice (yellowish skin and eyes) and fever.
Cirrhosis of the liver can also provoke these symptoms, in addition to itching and mental confusion.
Pain on the right side of the upper abdomen can be provoked by liver, pancreatic and stomach cancer.
If the pain is felt in the middle abdomen, it could be a colon tumor.

Abdominal pain in the middle abdomen

Causes of Bach pain in the navel area or middle abdomen include:

  • Indigestions
  • constipation or constipation
  • Gastroenteritis (inflammation of the digestive system)
  • Irritable bowel syndrome (a functional disorder characterized by diarrhea or constipation that can occur alternately)
  • Food poisoning
  • Food allergies
  • Meteorism (accumulation of gases in the intestine)
  • Lactose intolerance
  • Umbilical or abdominal hernia
  • Kidney stones
  • Endometriosis (the tissue of the inner wall of the uterus is located in other organs and causes bleeding during menstruation)
  • Crohn’s disease (inflammatory bowel disease that causes inflammation and ulcers)
  • Appendicitis (appendicitis, which can cause serious complications such as intestinal wall rupture and peritonitis)
  • Intestinal obstruction (blockage of fecal passage in the intestine)
  • Colorectal cancer (causes various symptoms such as abdominal pain, but no symptoms occur in the final stage)

Pain in the lower abdomen

tract disorders 
Urinary tract infections are common ailments that can often cause burning during micturition and urge to urinate.
The infection can spread to the kidneys (pyelonephritis) and cause malaise with high fever and back pain.
Urinary tract tumors are rather rare.

Diseases of the reproductive organs
Flank pain can come from the ovaries.
Pain caused by the uterus worsens during the menstrual cycle and is called dysmenorrhea.

Other disorders of the reproductive system include:

  • Endometriosis
  • uterine fibroma,
  • pelvic inflammatory disease,
  • ovarian cysts,
  • Problems related to the early stages of pregnancy, such as an ectopic pregnancy or miscarriage.

Painful abdominal muscles There are very large muscles
in the abdominal wall, especially the straight (rectus abdominis muscle) and the transverse abdominal muscle (transversus abdominis muscle).
If you have become cold or if exercises have been performed to strengthen the abdominal muscles, especially in an untrained state, pain can occur when you move.
For example, when coughing, laughing or getting up, abdominal pain can occur due to the tension of the muscles.

Causes of pain along with other symptoms

Abdominal pain can occur in different regions of the abdomen, sometimes just below the rib cage or even further down, near the navel.

Pain that can be felt in the upper abdomen, i.e. under the chest:

  • If heartburn and belching are also noticeable and the pain is positively or negatively influenced by eating, stomach acid could be the trigger and be associated with reflux or a stomach ulcer. Gastric acid-related pain can be treated with acid-binding agents (antacids) or acid blockers. The doctor can educate the patient about the most appropriate drugs and home remedies for gastroesophageal reflux.
  • Severe pain in the upper, middle part of the abdomen radiating to the back may be caused by gallstones; this must be clarified during a doctor’s visit.
    In this case, you feel dniesy pain especially after abundant and fatty meals.
  • If the pain in the upper abdomen gets worse with gymnastic exercises, angina or heart attack may be to blame; then the necessary examinations must be made, such as an electrocardiogram.
  • If the abdominal pain is deeper, and bleeding or changes in bowel habits are also noticed, there could be a serious bowel disease, which a visit to the doctor must clarify.

Abdominal pain and diarrhea

In the case of abdominal cramps and diarrhea, the cause may be an intestinal infection (gastroenteritis).
This disorder also causes fever, vomiting and fatigue.

What to eat in this case?
In the acute phase, fasting is especially recommended, as the body tries to free itself from something and should not be hindered.
When the fever has passed, the patient feels much better. Then he should eat light food that is easily digestible.

With diffuse abdominal pain and frequent diarrhea, there could also be a chronic disease: irritable bowel syndrome.
This can either have psychosomatic causes, i.e. be caused by a stressful situation (for example, an exam, a job interview, etc.), or occur when drinking cold milk or water or staying in rooms with air conditioning.

Other causes of abdominal pain and diarrhea include:

  • Lactose intolerance.
  • Diverticulitis. A diverticulum is an extension of the intestinal wall, which provokes the formation of an external pocket. Diverticulitis means inflammation of the diverticulum.
  • Crohn’s disease. This is an inflammatory bowel disease that causes inflammation and ulcers in the digestive tract and can also cause intestinal obstruction.

Treatment of upper abdominal pain

Depending on the cause, various medications and therapies may be used to cure the pain in the upper abdominal region.
Some diseases, such as diaphragmatic hernia and aneurysm of the abdominal aorta, require surgical treatment.

Some symptoms disappear on their own, others can be controlled by a change in diet and exercise.
However, if the upper abdominal pain persists, a doctor should always be consulted immediately, because there are many vital organs in the abdominal cavity.

Medications for abdominal pain Antispasmodics (antispasmodics such as BUSCOPAN ® – butylscopolamine) are particularly suitable for the treatment of stomach pain and abdominal cramps; they do not simply suppress the sensation of pain, but relax the abdominal muscles that are responsible for the pain, cramps and discomfort.

Stomach pain can also occur as a side effect of certain medicines; one should consult the doctor or pharmacist so that he can check the drugs taken.

Medications that can provoke abdominal pain include:

  • Anti-inflammatory drugs from the group of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
  • Medication for dementia
  • Aspirin

Aspirin and NSAIDs usually work well for abdominal pain, but in the case of a stomach or intestinal ulcer, they can be the trigger or make the situation worse.

These products are usually available in pharmacies (e.g. ibuprofen); the package leaflet should always be observed and if side effects include stomach ulcers and abdominal pain, do not take them.

Five proven home remedies for abdominal pain

Healthy and regular meals
At work, just a small snack between one session and the next, at home with chips, popcorn and other junk food on the sofa in front of the TV: this can cause problems for the digestive system.

Stop smoking
Smoking can weaken the lower esophageal sphincter, possibly causing heartburn and acid reflux.

Lose weight and exercise regularly
Overweight People have increased abdominal fat, which puts pressure on the stomach and can cause heartburn.

No alcohol alcohol
increases the production of stomach acid and can cause heartburn as well as increase other digestive disorders.

Overcoming stress
Grief and worry can upset the delicate balance of digestion and worsen digestive problems, such as irritable bowel syndrome.

Ginger is probably the best food for someone who suffers from abdominal pain. However, it is not enough to cure the diseases that cause abdominal pain.
A healthy diet and a health-promoting lifestyle are fundamental.

Abdominal pain in children

Children often have stomach ache and there are very different causes for it. Most of the time they are harmless and the children soon feel better on their own.

What are the causes of abdominal pain in children?
The pain can be provoked by all organs located in the abdominal region; these include stomach, intestines, gallbladder, pancreas, etc.
Abdominal pain does not necessarily mean a serious illness of the child, even if it is very severe.
Very severe stomach pain can be the result of mild illnesses, such as gas formation in the stomach by:

On the other hand, serious illnesses can begin with relatively mild abdominal pain.
Abdominal pain in children can also be a reaction to stress.

A doctor should be contacted immediately in the following cases:

  • In case of severe pain that lasts for a long time (several hours) or wakes the child up at night.
  • The pain occurs frequently and regularly.
  • The child has a high fever (more 38.5° C).
  • Rash or very pale skin color.
  • Persistent vomiting, the vomit is green or contains blood.
  • The child’s stool is black or red (blood in the stool).
  • The child becomes very tired or sleepy.
  • It also has severe pain in other parts of the body.
  • The abdomen is swollen in the groin.
  • Urination causes pain or there is blood in the urine.
  • The pain is caused by a wound or abdominal trauma (e.g. sports accident).
  • The child’s state of health does not seem to improve.

Abdominal pain during menstruation

In the period between ovulation and the first days of menstruation, painful cramps may occur.
The cramps usually begin one or two years after the first menstrual period (menarche).
The pain usually occurs in the lower abdomen or back, some women feel it only slightly, in others it is rather severe.

In general, the intensity of menstrual pain decreases after the first birth or with a change in diet.
Natural remedies for these ailments include:
avoiding fried foods, caffeinated foods, salt, sugar, gluten, dairy, and meat.
Sporty women and women who exercise regularly suffer less from menstrual cramps.

Abdominal pain during pregnancy

Is mild abdominal pain normal during pregnancy?
Occasional complaints in the abdominal region are common during pregnancy. They can be harmless, but they can also indicate a serious problem. (Severe or persistent abdominal pain should never be ignored.)
One should not make a self-diagnosis.
If abdominal pain or cramps occur together with vaginal bleeding, haemorrhagefeverchillsdischarge, urination problems, nausea or vomiting, or if they do not subside even when resting, a doctor must be notified.

Ectopic pregnancy
In a normal pregnancy, the egg implants itself in the uterine cavity, in an ectopic pregnancy (extrauterine pregnancy) the fertilized egg does not reach the uterus and implantation takes place in another place, often in an fallopian tube and leads to an “ectopic pregnancy“; but also ovary, cervix or abdominal cavity are possible places of implantation.

It is important to stop an ectopic pregnancy at the initial stage; it can cause a breakthrough or damage the organ in the pelvis where the pregnancy has settled. This can be extremely dangerous for the mother.

Read more