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Stomachache, gastric pain

The not so friendly stomachache! Page 1 of 2

>> Stomachache - Part 2 >>

Gastric pain is a relatively broad term. It is known in layman's terms as “stomachache”. But how do we exactly characterize the all-too-famous “stomachache”?

For localization and diagnosis especially for medical practitioners, the human abdomen is divided into four main quadrants: the right upper quadrant (RUQ), the left upper quadrant (LUQ), the right lower quadrant (RLQ), and the left lower quadrant (LLQ). Surgeons even have a more distinct localization of stomachache or gastric pain based on nine regions: the right and left hypochondriacs, the right and left iliac regions, the right and left flanks, the epigastric, periumbilical and suprapubic regions. A specific description on the pain and its characteristics will give a physician an idea on the cause and possible etiology of the gastric pain. Thus, if you experience stomachaches and plan to go to a doctor, be sure to take note of the pain, its severity, and its characteristics (such as how it occurs, when it occurs, where it radiates to, and frequent it occurs) so your doctor will not have a hard time trying to figure out what is happening to you – and you get your necessary treatment fast.

Stomachaches occur due to a wide variety of causes. This may be due to a bacterial or viral infection (most usually accompanied with fever in these cases), mechanical obstruction in the viscera among of which constipation may be one of the outcomes, abnormalities in blood flow, abnormal changes in the abdominal wall, as well as inflammation of a viscus such as in the cases of appendicitis, typhoid fever, or typhilitis. Due to the very broad spectrum of choices, a physician will often find it hard to diagnose a patient presenting with the symptom of abdominal pain.

In the medical world, abdominal pain is either designated as an “acute abdomen” or a “surgical abdomen”. An acute abdomen differs from the surgical abdomen such that it does not often require operative intervention. There are specific mechanisms of pain as to its origin in the abdomen. Let us discuss these common mechanisms briefly.

>> Stomachache - Part 2 >>

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