Causes of Left Side Abdominal (Stomach) Pain

Finding the Cause of Abdominal Pain

Left side abdominal pain may arise from the internal organs of the gastrointestinal and urinary tract, chest, pelvic cavity, abdominal wall muscles, bones (ribs, spine, pelvis), vessels, nerves or skin. The presence of other signs and symptoms are an important indication of possible causes of left sided abdominal pain and factors that exacerbate or ease the pain are a vital clue to the underlying condition.

If the pain is of a sudden onset, unbearable and associated with a high fever, dizziness, confusion or a loss of consciousness, immediate medical attention needs to be sought. Take note of whether the pain is related to eating, sleeping, bowel movements, flatulence (passing gas), movement or menstrual cycle in females.

The list of causes of  left side abdominal pain are listed below are arranged in order from the upper abdomen (above the navel) to lower abdomen (below the navel). It is intended to serve as a guide but ultimately a diagnosis by a medical professional is necessary so that the appropriate treatment can be commenced as soon as possible. An abdominal ultrasound, x-ray, CT scan or MRI are often necessary for a definitive diagnosis, along with specialized investigations like a flexible sigmoidoscopy, colonoscopy or double contrast barium enema for gastrointestinal conditions.

UPPER Left Abdominal Pain

Upper left abdominal pain is most often due to a condition afflicting one or more organs or structure in the LUQ (left upper quadrant) of the abdomen. It may also be due to conditions in the thoracic cavity or lower left abdominal area that either refers or radiates to the LUQ. Causes of upper left abdominal pain include:

LARGE INTESTINE

Also known as the large bowel, it is responsible for the final stages of water absorption which leads to the formation of a solid stool from liquid intestinal chyme from the small intestine. It houses a number of species of colonic bacteria which are necessary for normal functioning but can be pathological if there is an overgrowth or pathogenic bacteria replace it. The large intestine includes the cecum (junction between small and large intestine), colon, rectum and anus. Conditions of the large intestine that may cause left side abdominal pain includes :

  • Constipation
  • Volvulus – twisting of the transverse colon around its axis (rare)

ABDOMINAL MUSCLES

The abdominal muscles includes several types of muscles that make up the abdominal wall. It protects the abdominal organs which lacks a skeletal shield like the chest cavity and also plays various roles in movement of the legs and thorax. These muscle also stabilize the trunk during standing, walking and running and are prone to injury. Muscular conditions that may cause abdominal pain includes :

  • Muscle strain
  • Abdominal hernia
  • Strenuous exercise
  • Blow, blunt force trauma
  • Rectus sheath hematoma
  • Abscess in psoas muscle

PANCREAS

The pancreas is a large multipurpose gland which has exocrine functions that affects digestion and endocrine functions which control metabolism. It empties its digestive enzymes (exocrine component) into the duodenum, the first part of the small intestine, along with bile released by the gallbladder. Without these enzymes, the process of digestion is severely hampered. Pancreatic conditions that may cause left side abdominal pain include :

SPLEEN

The spleen is the largest lymph node in the body responsible for filtering blood and removing cellular debris and foreign microorganisms. Although the spleen can be removed without hampering life, it nevertheless plays several important roles in the body. Splenic conditions that may cause left side abdominal pain includes :

  • Splenic infarct
  • Ruptured spleen, often in car accidents
  • Enlarged spleen (splenomegaly) only in cases of massive splenomegaly.

KIDNEYS/URETER

The kidney is responsible for filtering the blood, removing wastes and passing it out in the urine while conserving essential electrolytes and water. It also plays other important roles in regulating several functions in the body that are not associated with urine, like stimulating the production of red blood cells. The kidney is located in the upper part of the abdomen and shielded by the ribcage. Urine from the kidney leads to the bladder via the ureter. Conditions affecting the kidney and/or ureter that may result in left side abdominal pain include :

  • Pyelonephritis – infection of the kidney
  • Glomerulonephritis (kidney inflammation), kidney cyst or tumor
  • Urinary stones

LEFT ADRENAL GLAND

The adrenal gland, also known as the suprarenal gland, is located on the top of the kidney. It has two distinct layers, the medulla and cortex, which secrete various hormones that play important roles in the body.

  • Adrenal adenoma (benign tumor)
  • Adrenal carcinoma also known as adrenocortical carcinoma. (malignant tumor)

LUNGS

The lungs are responsible for gas exchange between the air and blood stream. Although not often considered in abdominal pain, diseases affecting the base of the lung may affect the pleura lining around the lung) and diaphragm (main muscle of respiration) that can lead to pain. The lung itself cannot feel pain unless the surrounding structures are affected. Some conditions of the lung that may cause abdominal pain includes :

  • Pneumonia – usually bacterial or viral
  • Pleuritis – inflammation of the lung membrane
  • Pulmonary embolism – blood clots in the lungs

HEART

The heart is the muscular pump that circulates blood throughout the body. It is situated in the mediastinum, the centrally located cavity between the lungs and is in close proximity to the upper middle abdominal area. It often causes referred pain to the upper abdomen when diseased.

  • Heart attack
  • Angina pectoris – pain behind the breastbone in heart or coronary arteries disease
  • Pericarditis, mycocarditis or endocarditis

Heart diseases are often considered as medical emergencies as the condition can be life-threatening. It should always be suspected when accompanied by symptoms such as pain to the left jaw or arm with dizziness and/or fainting.

DIAPHRAGM

The diaphragm is the largest muscle of respiration and separates the chest cavity from the abdominal cavity. During inspiration it pushes the abdominal contents downwards as the chest cavity expands. On the left side, the most prominent feature is the diaphragmatic opening which allows the esophagus (gullet) to pass to connect with the stomach.

  • Abscess – collection of pus below diaphragm

STOMACH

The stomach is the hollow sac that lies between the end of the esophagus and the first part of the small intestine known as the duodenum. It is prone to various diseases often associated with the corrosive gastric acid that it produces and holds. Some conditions of the stomach that may be responsible for left sided abdominal pain includes :

  • Gastritis
  • Stomach ulcers
  • Hiatal hernia
  • Stomach cancer
  • Stomach polyps – pain is more likely in large masses.

OTHER

LOWER Left Abdominal Pain

Lower left abdominal pain may be due to the organs or structures located in the LLQ (lower left quadrant) of the abdomen. As with upper abdominal pain, the pain may be referred or radiated from other sites. Due to the continuity of the many structures, particularly the gastrointestinal tract, urinary tract and large blood vessels (aorta or inferior vena cava).  The pelvic structures, particularly the ovaries, fallopian tubes and uterus, are common causes of lower left abdominal pain in women.

COLON

The colon is the largest part of the left intestine as described above.

  • Constipation
  • Trapped gas in the colon is more likely to occur in the left part of the transverse colon (splenic flexure syndrome).
  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is functional disorder particularly of the large intestine characterized by disturbances in bowel habit and intestinal cramps, hence the alternative name spastic colon.
  • Diverticulitis – inflammation of the last part of the colon (sigmoid colon).
  • Diverticulosis – non-inflamed pouches in the colonic wall
  • Clostridium difficile infection after antibiotic treatment
  • Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD): Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis
  • Ischemic or microscopic colitis
  • Colorectal polyps, or cancer
  • Volvulus of sigmoid colon

APPENDIX

This is an outpouching of the large intestine which may become obstructed, infected and severely inflamed. Appendicitis usually causes right lower but sometimes left lower abdominal pain.

Video

The following video outlines some of the possible causes of left side abdominal pain. A more extensive list of conditions that may cause upper and lower left abdominal pain is discussed below.

FEMALE REPRODUCTIVE ORGANS

Various gynecological disorders are a  common cause of lower left abdominal pain in women particularly when associated with ovulation and menstruation (periods). Pregnancy may also account for pain due to the expanding uterus and uterine contractions seen in an otherwise healthy pregnancy.

  • Ovulation (mid-cycle pain, Mittleschmerz)
  • Gonorrhea
  • Twisted or ruptured ovarian cyst
  • Ectopic pregnancy
  • Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID)
  • Endometriosis
  • Miscarriage
  • Polycystic ovarian syndrome – PCOS
  • Fibroids

MALE REPRODUCTIVE ORGANS

Pain rarely occurs solely in the left lower abdominal area without pain, swelling or visible lesions in the pelvic area or on the genitalia.

  • Spermatic cord disorders
  • Testes disorders
  • Gonorrhea

ABDOMINAL MEMBRANE (PERITONEUM)

The peritoneum is the membrane that surrounds various abdominal organs, particularly those of the gastrointestinal tract, and encloses it within its own peritoneal cavity in the abdomen. Peritoneal fluid helps to lubricate the organs that are in constant contact with each other.

  • Peritonitis
  • Ascites

ABDOMINAL BLOOD VESSELS

The abdominal blood vessels include the abdominal portion of two of the largest blood vessels in the body – aorta (artery) and inferior vena cava (vein) – that carries blood to and from the heart. It is prone to a number of disorders and diseases which may also include its various branches and tributaries.

  • Aneurysm of abdominal aorta
  • Atherosclerosis or embolism of mesenteric arteries
  • Hereditary angioedema
  • Henoch-Schönlein-purpura

BLOOD

  • Porphyria
  • Sickle Cell Disease

SKIN

Most skin diseases are associated with itching but pain can occur with the following conditions :

  • Herpes zoster (shingles)
  • Dermatitis exacerbated by an infection, abscess formation or tears in the skin.

OTHER

Read detailed articles with causes, symptoms and diagnosis of left upper abdominal pain and left lower abdominal pain.

About Jan Modric (249 Articles)
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  • Aviator

    Yes the details was really helpful

  • Sherry Gordon

    Boyfriend has pain in lower left side.He has pain in his groin where his ball sack is. He says it feels like they are skamming against each other. He rides in dirt bike races all the time and his body gets really beat on. He also works a full-time job in a warehouse pulling pallets and loading and unloading trailers. He does wear a belt for protection for his lower back etc. I give him body massage for like all the time. He is spoiled….But back to the point what can been causing this pain? Do you have any ideas?

  • Jan Modric

    To Sherry Gordon.

    Inguinal hernia (a protrusion of a part of the small intestine through a muscle cleft) or a problem with testicular veins (varicocele) are my first two toughts. It may also be a tumor or swelling from other reasons.

    He should see an urologist as soon as possible to avoid permanent damage of the testes.

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  • Elena

    My daughter has a lower left side pain for the last 3 weeks. Sometimes (rarely) it gets worse, but mostly she can function fine. She is 8 years old and doctors are mostly ignoring this – ultrasound did not show anything. I am very worried. What can this be?

  • Elena

    I am sorry – I said lower left, it is lower right for my daughter – I will move my question to the right page. Thank you.

  • Jan Modric

    If she was constipated you’d probably know.

    In IBS, pain often gets worse after the meal and is relieved with the bowel movement. Abdominal cramps, bloating, diarrhea or/and constipation are other symptoms.

    If it is something within the colon (not often in her age), sigmoidoscopy would reveal it.

    If Hemoccult shows blood in the stool, the cause is within the bowel.

    If she was getting some antibiotics before the pain has started it can be pseudomembranous colitis due to overgrowth of Clostridium difficile bacterium. This is checked by stool test for Cl-Diff.

    Maybe she can have a stool test for ova and parasites (O&P), Cl-Diff and Hemmoccult. If this will be negative, basic blood tests can be done to confirm/exclude inflammation. Ovaries were already checked?

    You may try with low-fructose diet for four days: no fruits or any fruit product, no sorbitol (in sugar free chewing gum and some sodas), no products with HFCS. If this helps, it’s possible that she have fructose malabsorption.

    If nothing helps, you should insist on sigmoidoscopy.

    Also read about endometriosis:
    http://kidshealth.org/teen/sexual_health/girls/endometriosis.html

  • Jan Modric

    Elena,
    what’s different on the right side is appendix (chronic appendicitis maybe)and the start of the colon that may twist around its axis (volvulus).

    Try to find out if there are any other symptoms: bloating, lose stools, changed stool color (pale or yellow or green stools), if pain is worse shortly after the meal or after certain foods like dairy or fruits. Also try to determine exact location of pain if possible.

    In any case – you may try with blood test that reveal eventual inflammation and various stool tests that show occult blood or parasites…

  • Elena

    Thank you. The pain does not get worse with any foods and her stool is not loose or of a strange color. I will insist on the tests you suggested. What is strange to me is that the pain is in one specific place on the right hand side below the stomach. If doctor presses on other parts of the stomack – pain in that spot gets worse, but nowhere else. Very specific. And it does not go away even for a time – it is constant. a very quick ultrasound in emerg said that her appendix is fine. (She only saw a resident student and they sent us home as soon as ultrasound did not show appendicitis). Thank you.

  • Jan Modric

    Elena,

    the sign when pain in affected spot appears after pressuring on the another spot is called “rebound tenderness”, and is typical for localized inflammation of the peritoneum (membrane that covers abdominal organs). This sign is typical for appendicitis, but there could be other reasons. If ultrasond showed nothing this does NOT exclude appendicitis. Appendicitis usually appears with strong pain and nausea/vomiting, but mild acute or chronic appendicitis or inflammation of the near part of the colon IS possible. Ovarian torsion is another possible cause.

    Read here about rebound tenderness:
    http://www.healthline.com/adamcontent/point-tenderness-abdomen

    Meckel’s diverticulum can also cause lower right pain and rebound tenderness:
    http://www.residentandstaff.com/issues/articles/2005-12_01.asp

    So: appendicitis, ovarian torsion, and Meckel’s diverticulum are three possible causes. Blood test would show some inflammation, but to determine exact cause another imaging investigation would be needed: another ultrasound, MRI or CT.

  • Elena

    Thank you very much for this information – I am reading through it. THANK YOU.

  • jyotika hada

    I am mother of two children. they are 13 and 11 years. I moved to australia 5 years ago. Since i came i put on 14kgs.Now I have left side stomach problem. when i just press it hurts. I sometime feels vomiting like in pregency time. I have already checked pregency test but it is negative. My tommy is big as well. I just eat rye bread, salad and fruits. But still tommy is big. Just like to know the cause. Hope you can advice me. thank you

  • Jan Modric

    To jyotika hada.

    Any change in stool consistency, frequency or color?
    Does pain resolve after the bowel movement?

    Left side tenderness, bloating and nausea would suggest inflammation in the colon from different causes: stool tests and blood tests can give more info.

    To avoid bloating try to limit some fruits (apples, pears, and stone fruits) and high fiber vegetables like beans.
    http://www.healthhype.com/causes-of-bloating-and-gas-flatulence.html

  • Pingback: Antibiotic Associated Diarrhea (AAD) Prevention & Treatment | Current Health Articles 2009()

  • cleva

    I have been having accute left side abdominatl pain for about a week now. It started in the lower pelvis and now is uparound the naval area and below on the left hand side. What could this be? I have no nausea, vomiting or dioreah. My abdoman is very sore to touch from the oustide. The doctor has also put me onto antibiotics.Thankyou.

  • Jan Modric

    To cleva.

    I suppose that your doctor is thinking that you have diverticulitis – an inflammation of small pouches that often develop in the end part of the large intestine (so, on the lower left side). So, if it is diverticulitis, antibiotics should help you in few days.

    If antibiotics won’t help, next things to consider are:
    – Clostridium difficile overgrowth in the last part of the colon. This is diagnosed with finding C.diff toxin in a stool sample and treated with a special antibiotic, probably other one as you’re reciving it now.
    – ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease. This is diagnosed with colonoscopy.

    How old are you?

    Here’s one detailed article about left lower abdominal pain:
    http://www.healthhype.com/acute-and-chronic-left-lower-llq-abdominal-pain-diagnosis.html

  • symills

    Have a pain behind lower left side of my rib cage. I can only get relief when laid down it is getting worse. I had colonoscopy but all tests fine had a polyp removed. Not getting any better just pain getting worse. Please help

  • Jan Modric

    To symills.

    I would need to know are you constipated, when pain started, how far on the left the pain is located? Also how old are you and are you male or female? Blood and stool tests were made?

    A common causes of upper left abdominal pain are:
    – Air trapped in the colon, often in constipation. Almost all bowel diseases present with some bowel movement changes.
    – Pleurisy – an inflammation of the lung membrane like in viral pneumonia. Pain changes with body position.
    – Kidney disease – a moderate hit over the kidney is sometimes painful in kidney disease. Change in urine color or burning urination are common. Urine tests are needed for more information.
    – Enlarged spleen from some blood disorders or splenic infarct
    – Broken rib
    – etc…

    Try to think from organ to organ and think what other symptoms you’d have if that organ was affected.

  • Jan Modric

    Symills,
    pain occuring after the meal, 6 inches left from midline and having diarrhea often apparently speak from a colon disorder. If nothing were found with colonoscopy and blood tests then this may be a “splenic flexure syndrome” or, according to some sources, a variant of IBS.
    IBS is considered to be a combination of stress and irritation by certain foods. You can read what is IBS here:
    http://www.healthhype.com/what-is-ibs-spastic-colon-symptoms-proper-diet-coping-with-stress.html
    and which foods to avoid in IBS here:
    http://www.healthhype.com/fodmap-diet-foods-to-avoid-in-ibs-bowel-disorders-with-bloating-and-gas.html

  • Tania

    Had gastric band 3 weeks ago – had gastric band removed 2 weeks later as unable to tolerate any fluids. 4 days post second surgery – pain level with my naval but sometimes lower has presented – pain sometimes extremely intense and sharp other times less excrutiating. Went to emergency after 3 days – they did xrays and ultrasound but unconclusive. Suggested that it was due to large amount of fecal matter in bowels – tried enema without success then tried fleet to cleanse internally – pain has not gone. any suggestions???

  • Jan Modric

    To Tania.

    Bowel obstruction, infection, hernia and other complications of surgery are not so rare and they have to be resolved promptly to prevent permanent impairment of affected organ.

    What triggers pain? Pain is constant, also at night? Any fever, any bulges or abdominal skin discoloration? Black stool or blood in the stool? Painful or burning urination? Try to answer all this to help surgeon to find the cause.

  • Halima

    Hi,
    I have had my spleen remove because ir was enlarged due to blood disorder that I have (HS), and since then years now I’ve had increasing upper left side chest pain, dull, tender to the touch. I’ve also had enlarged lymph notes (tested negative on leukemia) and lately my pain has been spreading to my arm, shoulder, back as well as my next, but only left side. I did few CT’s, seen an oncologist and numerous doctors, no one found anything. I don’t know where to go anymore?? I wonder if maybe some of my nerves were damaged as a result of open splenectomy (44 stitches).

  • Jan Modric

    To Halima.

    When did you have splenectomy?
    When symptoms started?
    Which exact part of the body is tender?
    Do you have excessive hiccups or do you cough?
    How long the pain lasts when it starts?

    Tenderness over lower left ribs and spreading of pain to the shoulder may be due to subphrenic abscess (collection of pus under the left side of diaphragm), adhesions (scarring), collection of blood or fluid below diaphragm. Not all of these disorders would be necessary seen on CT.

    Another posibility is pleural effusion (fluid between two lung membranes on the left side but this would be cleraly seen on X-ray…

    Symptoms of nerve damage would be confined to the site of operation and would probably not spread to the shoulder and arm.

    The distribution of pain (under breast bone (?), left shoulder, neck, arm) you’re describing is also typical for angina pectoris (how old are you?) and pericarditis.

    Another possibility is bulging disc in the neck spine – this would cause neck, shoulder and arm pain.

    ——-
    I guess a laparoscopy (endoscopic inspection of abdominal cavity with a laparoscope inserted through an incision in abdominal wall) could reveal eventual abnormality under your left part of the diaphragm.

  • Storm

    I am a 17 yr old male and I was attending summer skool…after breakfast i went to class and started on my work and suddenly a very sharp pain appeared in my left addomen (it felt like the entire side) it hurt so much that I doubled over in pain and afterwards it would spasm slightly with sharp pains…wats wrong?

  • Jan Modric

    To Storm.

    Have you noticed any blood or color change in the urine after the pain episode? Pain you’ve described (sharp strong pain and spasms) typically occurs in left kidney or uretheral stone.

    Pain from the spleen would be located far on the left side below and under lower left ribs…

    I recommend you to visit your primary doctor that can check your kidney and send a sample of your urine to laboratory. From the result doctor will see if you need further investigation made by an urologist.

  • RO

    HI IM 20 AND IM EXPERIENCING A NUMEROUS AMOUNT OF THINGS.. IT ALL STARTED A COUPLE MONTHS BACK WHEN I TOOK IBUPROFEN FOR HEADACHES, I WAS TAKING 3 PER EVERY MEAL FOR 2 WEEKS AS MY DOCTOR PRESCRIBED.

    I STARTED TO HAVE CONSTIPATION AND TILL THIS DAY I STILL HAVE HARD DRY STOOLS. THE FIRST PART IS HARD AND THEN THE REST SEEMS TO BE NORMAL.
    JUST RECENTLY IVE HAD A PAIN THAT FEELS LIKE INFLAMMATION NEAR MY LOWER LEFT RIB CAGE. DO YOU KNOW WHAT LIES IN THIS AREA? AND DOES IT HAVE ANYTHING TO DO WITH MY BOWEL MOVEMENTS.
    MY BOWEL MOVEMENTS STARTED COUPLE MONTHS BACK, AND IM KINDA SCARED THAT MY STOOLS ARE STILL HARD.
    i ALSO THINK I HAVE HEMMOROIDS WHICH SOMETIMES MAKES MY STOOL BLOODY SOMETIMES.
    I HAVE NO INSURANCE AND HAVE SO MANY BILLS FROM THE TIME I HAD HEADACHE PROBLEMS, DOES ANYONE HAVE ADVICE????

  • RO

    ALSO ITS REAL HARD TO PASS MY STOOLS, AND SOMETIMES IT FEELS LIKE I HAVE MORE BUT NOTHING COMES OUT.

  • Jan Modric

    To RO.

    There is a horizontal part of the colon running below the ribs. It often happens that some gas stucks in the left part of the colon and causes pain, especially in constipation.

    Your hemorrhoids has probably also aggraveated because of constipation.

    To avoid constipation:
    – Do not skip meals. Even if you feel cramping try to eat sometzhing to maintain bowel peristalsis
    – Drink enough fluid (plain water, juice from oranges or other citruses) – no need to exagerate though
    – walk or be otherwise physically active
    – schedule a time in the day to have bm – ideal is in the morning after breakfast
    – be sure to eat food that have some fibers: bread, cereals, vegetables.
    – avoid foods that cause bloating: beans and other legumes, fruits like apples, pears.
    – avoid heavy sugary meals, avoid sugar in general, also carbonated beverages, beer…

    http://www.healthhype.com/constipation-causes-and-cure.html
    http://www.healthhype.com/causes-of-bloating-and-gas-flatulence.html

  • Kathy

    My husband is 52 years old. He suffers from depression, anxiety, and panic attacks. He also has osteoporosis and degenerative disc disease in his neck and back. About two years ago he started having problems with his stomach/bowels. He was first diagnosed with diverticulosis. Treatment seemed to help for a little while. Then he began to have chronic constipation as well. Every time he started having problems there was this place in his LL side that hurt him. He said it felt like a ball was in there pushing. After trying everything OTC the doctor put him on Amitiza for the chronic constipation. It seemed to help for a few weeks. Now it’s hit or miss. But for the past 2-3 he has had constant pain in the LLQ with no relief, even when his bowels move. He had a colonscopy a few months ago. The doctor made no real comments about it. I want him to see a new doctor, but that in itself is a major challenge for my husband. Can someone please give me some ideas on how I can help him? He is getting SO depressed and out of heart with his health.

  • Jan Modric

    To Kathy.

    He should try anything to avoid constipation:
    http://www.healthhype.com/tag/constipation

    Constipation itself may be a cause of pain. Diverticulosis probably aggravates constipation, so he should care to have soft stool (enough fibers, avoidind sugary food). Calcium (if he gets it for osteoporosis) may also contribute to constipation.
    Whole-meal or whole-grain bread, (brown) rice, green leafy vegetables, morning cereals, enough fluid (but not soda) give some volume to the stool. It’s important not to skip meals, so have regular meals as much as possible. Ideal time to have a bowel movement is in the morning after breakfast.

  • LoriMoreno

    My 16 year old daughter was diagnosed with Mono on April 29,2009. She started getting upper left abdominal pain soon thereafter. She still has the pain, that she discribes as a constant dull pain with occasional sharp pains. This has worsened over the last 7 days. Has loss of appetite, nausea, headache, shakiness. No fever. She was seen yesterday by an infectious disease doctor, who told me that the spleen should no longer bother her. (no enlargement) Other possiblities her suggested: Ovary issue or intestinal issues. Was referred to both an OB/GYN and a gastroenologist. any ideas?

  • Jan Modric

    To LoriMoreno.

    I’m not sure if spleen can be excluded as a source of pain just by physical examination.

    Splenic infarct actually may (rarely) occur in infectious mononucleosis. Eventual pain in left shoulder would additionally speak for spleen involvement.

    CT is the diagnosis of choise but forv a young female a MRI would be appropriate:
    http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/193718-diagnosis

    Sometimes gas builds in the transverse part of the colon – just beside the spleen and causes pain. Condition is called “splenic flexure syndrome” and may be quite painful. Having regular bowel movements and avoiding foods (fibers, sugars) that result in gas formation by intestinal bacteria would help.

  • Cynthia

    I am a 38 year old female, that has previsouly been diagnosed with Diverticulosis. However, the last month I have had HORRIBLE cramping and numbness right under my left rib cage. I have had a CT Scan a bladder and intra-vaginal ultrasound, as they thought it was a large cyst. The cyst is not large enough to be causing this problem and my Dr. says its not my Diverticulitis this time. My skin is numb from below my breast to my waist and wraps around to part of my back. My potassium is at 2.1, Uric Acid is 8.1….and I dont have Gout. Nor does it run in my family. I’m getting tired of my Dr acting like he is grasping at straws. I’m on Flagyl, Cipro & Hyomax-SL for this, along with Percoset for the pain. I also am on Lasik, HCTZ & Potassium for years for my Lower Extremity Edema.

    Any suggestions on what is causing my pain and tenderness in my upper left abdomen? Its a horrible, gasp for breath pain when it comes on sharp. For the most part, its just a dull pain all the time. But I have flare ups about 5 times a day where the pain is just too intense.

  • Natt

    Im 17 years old, female, and approx. a week ago I got a sharp pain from under my ribcage to just below my hip (Strong enough for me to fall onto my bed.) Sometimes, it feels like there is a needle being stuck into my side. During the day it’s tolerable, but at night I can barely lie down, and some nights need to fall asleep sitting up. All my bowel movements have been normal.
    Also, I’ve been having slight breathing problems, like a sharp pain on the same side (slightly under ribcage and upwards.) when I breath in, although I’ve had that problem since grade 4, it’s only recently getting worse, and happens more often.

    My parents are sure that I just pulled a muscle, and wont take me to a doctor, but Im worried it could be something else. Should I be worried about it? :S

  • Jan Modric

    To Cynthia.

    Shingles is infection caused by Herpes zoster virus that usually affects one spinal nerve on one side only. Rash often appear along the course of the nerve from the spine to the middle line in the front. Sometimes only numbness or burning are present.

    Bulging disc in thoracic spine would also cause nubmness and pain along or or more adjacent spinal nerves also usually only on one side.

    None of above disorders would cause “horrible cramps”, but gas built in the left side of horizontal part of the colon (near the spleen) could. Condition is known as splenic flexure syndrome, sometimes considered as a form of IBS and probably trigered by stress and certain foods. Elimination of some foods, mostly those containing fructose, lactose and other sugars from the diet could help:
    http://www.healthhype.com/fodmap-diet-foods-to-avoid-in-ibs-bowel-disorders-with-bloating-and-gas.html

  • Jan Modric

    To Natt.

    On which side you feel pain? Is there any tenderness – does pain worsens when you press on the painful site?

    If your bowel movements are normal, without blood, and you have no nausea, bloating, cramps or fever and you can elicit pain with fingers, then it’s probably from muscles. If pain prevents you sleep this is enough to see a doctor to examine you.

  • kishor

    i am 19 yrs old.it is about 3-4 days i am having left abdomen pain and left shoulder pain together.it gets worse for 30minutes and for rest of the day it’s tolerable.its first time .any suggestion?
    i am having medicine related to gas.ultra sound showed nothing.

  • Jan Modric

    To kishor.

    Gas build in the left side of the horisontal part of the colon (near the spleen) can cause upper abdominal pain. Distended colon presses on diaphragm what could be the cause of left shoulder pain.
    Try to eliminate some foods from the diet to prevent bloating:
    Elimination of some foods, mostly those containing fructose, lactose and other sugars from the diet could help:
    http://www.healthhype.com/fodmap-diet-foods-to-avoid-in-ibs-bowel-disorders-with-bloating-and-gas.html
    http://www.healthhype.com/causes-of-bloating-and-gas-flatulence.html

  • tingleysgirl

    I AM 28 YRS OLD I HAVE BEEN HAVING SEVERE ABDOMINAL PAIN OFF AND ON FOR 6 YRS. IT COMES AND GOES. RECENTLY IT HAS STARTED BACK AND THIS TIME IT IS NOT GOING AWAY. IT STARTED WHEN I WAS PEEING PURE BLOOD AND WHAT APPEARED TO BE CHUNKS OF MEAT. NONE OF THE DRS CAN PIN POINT WHAT’S GOING ON WHEN THE IVP COMES BACK CLEAR, THEY TREAT ME LIKE I AM LYING ABOUT THE PAIN. I WAS IN ER LAST NIGHT DOUBLED OVER IN PAIN, AND HE SAID HE DIDN’T KNOW. SOMETIMES I GET CONSTIPATED, BUT I FIGURED IT WAS DUE TO THE PAIN MEDS. NOTHING GIVES ME TOTAL RELIEF. HEAT HELPS ALITTLE. NOW THE PAIN IS STARTING IN MY RIGHT SIDE, AND I AM SCARED IT IS SERIOUS. IT SEEMS TO GET WORSE AFTER I EAT. DO YOU HAVE ANY IDEAS

  • Jan Modric

    To tingleysgirl.

    The blood and “chunks of meat were in the urine?

    Where exactly do you feel pain – lower or upper abdomen?

  • tingleysgirl

    yes it was in the urine. the pain starts below ribs on left side and runs down to pelvic area. i had a hysterecomy 13yrs ago. when the pain is really bad my left leg will ache like a toothache. my lower back hurts also.

  • Jan Modric

    Tingleysgirl,

    all your symptoms speak for a serious kidney disorder. Stones in left kidney or urether would cause blood in the urine and pain would be present in exact areas you’ve described, including sharp pains in the leg. “Chunks of meat” could be from kidney inflammation.

    I strongly suggest you to visit nephrologist (kidney doctor) to have urine tests and all other what’s necessary. Pain itself can cause constipation.

    Pain on the right could be from the right kidney/urether.

    If pain appears within an hour after a meal, below the right ribs – in the middle of the right rib and if (not necessary) radiates to upper right back or right shoulder, it may be from gallbladder – ultrasound of gallbladder usually reveals gallstones in such a case.

  • srbowles100

    I am a 24yr old female, I have had my appendix and gal bladder removed. I am now having sharp cramping lower left abdominal pains about 20-60 mins. after I eat a meal. I am getting a few tests done soon, but the pain is unbearable and I would like to know if anyone has and ideas? I would like to know what im up for?

  • Jan Modric

    To srbowles100.

    Have you noticed bloody or cloudy urine after painful episode? Does pain spread to the groin or thigh? Is lower left abdominal tender when you press on it? Any change in stool habit?

  • seun

    I am 31 yrs old female I usually have lower abdominal pain on my left for the past 1yr now i have been given diffrent types of anticbiotic but still not going and i don’t know if it is responsible for me not getting pregnant cos have been married for 7months but no sign of pregnancy and I till feel the pain.thank

  • Jan Modric

    To seun.

    Are you constipated, have diarrhea, excessive gas? Do symptoms worsen after the meal and relieve after bowel movement?

  • StaRR

    I am having pain on my left side upper and lower at different times(i think the lower is because of my period). This has been going on for the last week. I take birth control pills which cause me to have alot of cramping and pain in the week prior to my period plus I always have cramps during my period as well but now my period is going to start within a few days and I still have the pain on the left side kinda upper. Eating does not make the pain better or worse. It comes and goes. And sometimes it hurts to the touch, but not all the time. I did go away on a trip for about 9days about a month ago when I came back I had cloudy urine…thought I had a UTI when to the doctors and had urine tested, no infection and no problems with kidney. Doctor told me to drink more water, which I have done and urine is clear and no cloudiness. I did read on the Mayo clinic website that exposure to extreme heat (which I had during those 9 days) could cause cloudy urine. I figured that the fact that I was not drinking enough water at that time made it worse as well as the fact that I was sexually active which I am normally not.
    I have taken several pregnancy tests, they are all negative. Plus I had a period since I came back.
    Not sure what to think…any thoughts?
    Thanks! SRR

  • Jan Modric

    To StaRR.

    Cloudy urine may appear in kidney stones. Stones in kidney may (but not always) cause pain over the affected kidney. Slight hiting over the kidney with the fist could also cause pain. If a small stone is lodged in the urether a sharp spasming pain lasting from several minutes to hours may appear on the side of abdomen, and often radiating down to the groin or thigh. If not specifically tested for stones, urine test may appear normal.

    Gas built in the left part of transverse colon (under left ribs on the side) can cause upper left pain.

    Where exactly was the tender spot?

  • StaRR

    I have a spare tire (2 tummies as I call it, lol) and the tenderness is on the bottom tummy. I recalled after writing yesterday that I was taking a different birth control pill(but in the same family) last year and I was having pain on my left in a similar spot and I got tested and had a cyst on my right ovary. Stopped the pills the pain went away as did the cyst. I am having the same reaction to these pills that I had to the previous ones(and maybe a new cyst). But there is also some tenderness on my back on the left,alittle above the spare tire(top tummy). And some come and go pain on the left towards the front of the spare tire, which hurts when I bend sideways toward my left but that pain when it comes on its own tends to radiate or pulsate. I have not had any pain radiating down towards my thigh or groin and no pain when urinating. The pain was worse last week and over the weekend and now seems to be dying down. I think that covers it….so what do you think could be going on, so that I can ask the doctor to perform certain tests. Seems like alot of docs today have to be told what to test for, ie please test my kidneys for stones, lol. Not all but some. 🙂 Thanks for your help.

  • Jan Modric

    Starr,
    please, consider seriously to stop taking birt control pills. Reactions you are describing when starting and stopping pills show that they are seriously affecting your ovaries and may cause serious and permanent harm to your ovaries, including infertility and ovarian cancer.

    Pain in the back on the left side…yes, “Doctor, what about urine test and ultrasound to check for kidney stones?”. Proteins, calcium and oxalate in urine should be checked. Beside stones, kidney inflammation (glomerulonephritis) is possible. Kidney is located on the back under the ribs (search for some image online). Spleen is located on the left side, like if you put a thumb of the spreaded hand into the armpit, spleen would be at the tip of your small finger. I believe spleen can be checked during a kidney ultrasound but doctor will examine you before that anyway.

    Right lower pain, now when you’ve mentioned ovaries, yes, it can be ovary.

    Be sure to mention your symptoms as exactly as you did here (location of the pain, tenderness upon pressing and pain when you bend to the left) to the doctor.

  • StaRR

    Jan,
    Thank you very much for you quick responses. I am going to call and make an appointment with my doctor ASAP or after my period which is due any day.
    I had already decided to stop taking the birth control pills but now what do I do about controception…my husband(whom i was visiting in hot Jamaica) is not going to want to use condoms…i have tried other birth controls and they have given me other side effects so I dont think any will work at this point. I know this page is not about that just thinking out loud.
    Again thanks so much. Im glad I found this site, now I am going into my appt with questions and ideas so that we can quickly find out whats going on.
    I will let you know how it goes.
    Have a great day! 🙂

  • DeeBee

    Hi. I am 52 and for the past 2 1/2 weeks have been experiencing lower left abdominal pain, dull. Occasionally it will hurt a bit more, if I move a certain way. I was at the doctor at the end of June for 6 weeks of heavy bleeding with my period. She ordered transvag ultrasound and regular ultrasound. They showed a follicular cyst on my left ovary. I had an oophorectomy in 1991 due to a dermoid cyst. I have also been diagnosed six years ago with vaginal adenomyosis. The doctor also ordered a endoscopic biopsy in late June this year. The biopsy was benign. The heavy bleeding stopped about five days after the biopsy. I had another period since then, that lasted about ten days and wasn’t as heavy as this other one. I also have slight exercise-induced asthma, which has been easily controlled with only one spray of Advair in the a.m. Recently I have had a bit more shortness of breath and seem to get winded more quickly. I just don’t feel quite right. I am about 15 pounds overweight, but am in pretty good shape, usually exercise with weights, but with these problems don’t have the energy to exercise as much recently. I don’t notice any change in bowel function or color. Rarely I do have a bit of a rapid heartbeat. Any ideas what might be going on?

  • Jan Modric

    StaRR,

    search online for “natural contraception”, especially for “calendar method” and “cervical mucus method”, as shortly described here:
    http://www.womenshealthchannel.com/contraception/natural.shtml

    Join some forum where this is discussed.

  • Jan Modric

    To DeeBee.

    It’s possible you have endometriosis in the abdominal cavity. I believe that laparoscopy – endoscopic investigation of abdominal cavity would be required for diagnosis. Follicular cyst itself may contribute to pain.

  • shilohrebecca

    Hi my name is shiloh and i am an 18 year old Female. I dunno why but on my side left from my right hip it hurts really badly. not so bad on the other side though. if i push on or around it my whole stomach hurts. When i walk i can feel pain. every morning when i wake up it hurts the most. I feel like i have to urinate badly, but once i go, It was not all that much. no unusual discharge though.

  • Jan Modric

    Hi, shiloh,
    The tender spot is above or below the hip level? Is it close to the navel or close to the hip? Any change in bowel habit, changed stool color, nausea, fever?

    It could be inflammed appendix, colon, ovarian cyst…Ultrasound of abdomen might reveal the cause.

  • DeeBee

    Thank you. I did go to the doctor and after pushing on the area, she determined that I DID strain my muscle. I was relieved it was something that simple after reading the other possibilities.

  • Jan Modric

    DeeBee,
    thanks for sharing. Heavy menstrual bleeding may be obviously misleading.

  • Doug

    i have been having these pains mainly on the left side of my body. its a sharp pain and somtimes its a aching feeling.

    im a 19 year old boy and i weigh about 135lbs and im about 6’2″

    the pain is usually on the left side of my chest around the area where i can feel my heart beat. sometimes it moves to my side on on my back. and accasionaly my jaw hurts as well. I’ve noticed since all of this has started happening i have been having heart palpitations. some days they are really scary because i can feel them in my throat and for some reason its usually only when i breath in deep or eat or drink anything.

    the pain sometimes goes through my left arm as well. and i can sometimes fell it in my fingers or in the palm of my hand. And sometimes i feel the pain in my right arm or the right side of my chest or lower abdomen. sometimes up into my neck as well.

    and im not sure if this has anything to do with it but i get this loud ringing noise in my ears from time to time.

    im not sure if this matters or not but i just recently found out that i have sleep paralysis. a lot of people don’t know what it is, let just say its a horrible experience.

    ive gotten checked my the doctor and they just say its anxiety. i have had an ekg done and x rays but everything seemed normal. also, i have an appointment for a stress test soon and i hope it goes well.

    sorry for such a long post, im just terrified.

    any clue about whats wrong with me?

  • Jan Modric

    Doug,

    pain around the heart radiating in the neck and left arm and all other symptoms you’ve listed strongly suggest a heart disorder. I can’t say if all this may arise from anxiety but it’s possible you have heart arrhythmia. An EKG taken only once and not at the time when you have symptoms may miss arrhythmia.

    When having stress tests, ask the doctor about checking your heart rhythm with a Holter monitor – a device that records your heart rhythm for 24 hours and you wear it around your waist.

    You’ve probably already read about sleep paralysis. Lack of sleep, non-regular sleep schedule, sleeping on the back and stress events or toughts before going to bed may aggravate it.

    Ringing in the ears may also be from anxiety or other causes like changes in blood pressure which may be from eventual heart disorder.

  • Doug

    jan,

    thank you for your reply.

    is heart arrhythmia serious?

    another thing i forgot to mention is that in the ekg, it said i have a left bundle branch block. the doctors said its nothing to worry about though. could that have anything to do with it?

  • Jan Modric

    Doug,

    heart arrhythmia refers to iregular heart beat. This is a broad term that includes some innocent errors in heart rhythm or it may be life threatening.

    Left bundle branch block by itself is not arrhythmia if it does not cause irregular heart beat. It is true that some people with this block have no symptoms. But you do have symptoms, only that is not clear if they have something with this block. Some small inborn error or other heart disorder, past infection of a heart muscle, etc. may cause bundle branch block.

    For you it is important that, until you have symptoms, avoid heavy exercise and unnecessary stress. Write down all questions you might have and ask while having a stress test. They are your symptoms that are not normal, so use your intuition and common sense when judging if it’s only your anxiety or is it something more. Quick one time testing cannot show all about heart.

    I would insist to have ultrasound of the heart which can show a lot of details.

  • Doug

    ok i’ll definitely try to get a ultrasound done.

    thanks so much for the help.

  • Samir B

    Hi, im 17years old and ive been getting a stitch like pain next to my belly button on the left side.
    the pain gets bad when i exercise, when i jump around doing star jumps or etc. it feels like a stitch sort of pain.

    today i went to train to see if i still have it and its no longer on the left side its on the right side now (feels like on lower right 6th pack)

    i dont have any blood in stool or dirareah, i have a stool every day
    ive had ultrasound done , showed nothing, blood test done, everything was perfect, would could it be?

    Bosanskir33@hotmail.com

  • kyo

    Hi Doug

    I am a 24 years old male. I have been feeling pains on my lower left abdomen (right above my left thigh) for 2 years now. The pain comes unexpectedly and will usually gone after I sleep it off (no pain whatsoever when I woke up). One thing that I note is that If I did not drink enough water, the pain will come back. I have done an ultrasound check on the abdomen last year the result is normal. Lately I have been experiencing sharp pains (comes and goes in less then a sec) which I think comes from the colon. I have asked my GP, and she feel my tummy and could not found anything, however she has referred for a colonoscopy.

    What is the possible causes?
    Can you describe the symptoms of colon cancer or diverticulitis? Are there any relation with High cholesterol or uric acid (my recent blood tests is not that good)?

    Thank you

  • Jan Modric

    Samir B,

    it may be streched or ruptured muscle. In this case you would feel pain when leaning left-, right-, back- or forward, or by pressing on the affected area.

    If you know some sport doctor, he would give you diagnosis quickly.

  • Jan Modric

    Kyo,

    colon cancer typically appear after 50 years of age.

    Diverticulitis appears with fever and diarrhea. Diverticulosis (non-inflamed pouches in colonic wall may cause constipation but is otherwise without symptoms.

    Pain “above the thigh” could be from intestinal hernia – in this case you (or doctor) would see a bulge or feel it when pressed on the site with fingers.

    Urinary stone can cause a short sharp pain in the urether. If you have elevated uric acid in the blood, it’s quite possible you have urinary stones. When a small stone dislodges from the kidney it travels through urether, bladder and urethra and is excreted with the urine.

    I suggest you to visit urologist (or kidney doctor) and ask for an ultrasound of the kidneys before colonoscopy, since you may have urinary stones and colonoscopy then probably won’t be needed.

    Yet another posible reason would be torn muscle. In this case you would be able to trigger pain with certain body movements or by pressing on the spot where pain usually appears.

  • Samir B

    Are you sure?
    becasue i only get the ache dull pain when im doing star jumps or any other jumping activity
    but day to day walking i dont feel much.
    it feels alot like a stitch

  • Jan Modric

    Samir B,

    how many centimetres from the navel (to left or right) does pain appear?

    When you feel the pain, stop with exercise, calm down a bit and then squeeze your abdominal muscles (to make them hard). If the pain worsens, it probably originates from the abdominal wall muscles (streched or simply fatigued muscle). Stitch pain would not likely worsen with sqeezing abdominal wall.

  • Samir B

    ok ill give it a go next time i exercise, thanks alot for help, big relief 🙂

  • kyo

    Hi Jan

    Thank you for the reply.

    as previously said, I have done abdominal ultrasound last year (this includes kidney) and they did not found anything. If I do not feel the pain (since the pain is intermittent), I can move to whatever position I want without triggering any pain. So I would not think torn muscle is the case.

    Me and the doctor have felt the area around above said pain (lower left abdomen near left thigh), but there is no bulge that I/the doctor can feel.

    I do not have diarrhea/fever.

    The GP suspects it is an IBS, but I think she wants to make sure that there is no cancer whatsoever (which is why the colonoscopy was referred).

    One thing that I tried recently, I drank “Royal Jelly” that I bought, and surprisingly it improves my stomach conditions (rarely felt any pain). But Once I stopped taking it, The pain returns.

    Quite confused now 🙁

  • nabil

    I always face problem during bowel movement to through out stools, its not hard as in the case of constipation, but does not come easily either. and when it comes out its quite soft and thin. but some times it contains some very small hard stone like stools along with soft stools. the problem i feel is like that i can sense in my abdomen that more stools will come out, but some how i cannot bring it out. while doing this a lot urine also comes. one more point the amount of stool is too much.

  • Jan Modric

    To nabil.

    Large amount of stool may be from fiber-rich food like a lot of vegetables, legumes, cereals…

    Large amount of urine is from drinking a lot of fluid.

    “Stones” in the stool commonly appear in constipation and irritable bowel syndrome.

    What exactly is your diet? Do you have any other symptoms and when did they start?

  • Jan Modric

    Kyo,

    if Royal Yelly, which contains magnesium sulfate and other substances with laxative properties helps you, it probably means your pain was from constipation. In this case you may find some natural foods with laxative effect (whole grain bread, green vegetables…) and spare some money…

    If so little was needed to get rid of pain, it is not likely you have any colonic or other disease. I strongly encourage you to duiscuss about Royal Yelly effect with your gastroenterologist and if colonoscopy is still needed then. It is really not likely that a simple yelly would treat some serious colonic disease…

    Colonic cancer is extremlyl rare at 24 and even those rare cases appearing in this age are mostly hereditary types of cancer (would run in your family). Most of other colonic disorders, except constipation, come with other symptoms (diarrhea, fever, nausea, etc..).

  • Pavol

    Hi,I have had not really pain but something like malaise on the left side of the stomach for the last 5 years.Ultrasound is ok,X-rays ok too.I had a duodenal ulcer 10 years ago.Usually the malaise awakens me at night with an accelerated heart beat.Then I can go days feeling fine or even weeks.Recently I was diagnosed with gallbladdeer polyps. thanks

  • nabil

    my diets are usually white rice and chicken and sometimes vegetables. but my question is that why stool does not want to come out easily. i sense something in my abdomen, but for some reason they dont want to come out. the feeling is like as if something is blocking the way of my rectum. and the hard stone like like stools are usually very small like the size of small gravels.

  • Jan Modric

    Pavol,

    can you explain this malaise a bit more? Do you have nausea, excessive burping, bloating, loose stools? The symptoms are in upper or lower abdomen?

    Duodenal ulcer often causes symptoms at night. Gallbladder polyps probably don’t cause any symptoms but if they are big (>1.5 cm) the gallbladder should be removed since they may develop into cancer.

  • Pavol

    Hi,I would not call it a nausea but it is very close to that.It is a feeling that something is there a does not want to continue down the intestines.Every time I try to touch and localise it I just can not find it.It seems to be in upper and lower abdomen.Both.No burping at all but there is some bloating.Stools are fine.Every time I fart(sorry)I feel a bit better.It seems to get worse when I am very tired.And again there are days when I feel perfect.I am 34. thanks

  • Jan Modric

    Pavol,

    maybe all discomfort is just from bloating – relief after passing gas speaks for this.

    There are several causes of abdominal bloating, some are caused by certain foods (food groups).

    If you have lactose intolerance, dairy products, especially milk (in certain amount) would cause bloating. Remove all dairy products from the diet for 4 days and if it helps, it means you probably have lactose intolerance.
    http://www.healthhype.com/what-is-lactose-intolerance-symptoms-test-diet-medicine.html

    If you have fructose malabsorption, removing all fruits and foods containing fructose, HFCS or sorbitol for 4 days would help you.
    http://www.healthhype.com/fructose-malabsorption-cause-symptoms-and-diagnosis.html

    You can also try a “low-FODMAP diet” that covers both of above two.
    http://www.healthhype.com/fodmap-diet-foods-to-avoid-in-ibs-bowel-disorders-with-bloating-and-gas.html

    In celiac disease, removing all gluten-containing foods would help.
    http://www.healthhype.com/what-is-celiac-disease-sprue-symptoms-test-foods-to-avoid.html

    I suggest you to read above articles, one by one and try related 4-day diet one after one until you find the cause. On the end you will maybe find out that only few foods bloat you; some fiber-rich food like beans, sugary food like honey, soda, certain fruits or sweets..or milk.

  • CL

    Hi Jan,

    I am a 34 ye old male. I have recently gone through a bout of ‘kidney stones’ although neither the doctor nor the lack of stones in my urine were able to prove that diagnosis positive. As of the 5th day, I am still finding a good amount of sharp pain in my lower left back and abdomen – enough to take painkillers every 5 hours or so. The pain has also extended to the right side of my back. I am also experiencing cramps and some sharp pangs in the lower right abdominal area – nothing as extreme but there nonetheless. Is there something other than kidney stones that could be causing this?

    The pain in my lower left is sharp and goes right through my body like a nail being pressed – sometimes to the point of doubling over. There was white and red blood cells in my urine among other things – it was a fairly dark orange when I went to the ER, this is largely cleared up now. But to this date I have not passed anything that looks like a stone nor has there been any small crystals in the strainer the ER gave me.

    I hate taking painkillers on a regular basis – any other diagnosis you could suggest?

  • Jan Modric

    CL,

    stones do not always appear in the urine. If your kidneys are bleeding, blood clots in the urether may also cause spasming pain.

    Both sides back and abdominal pain and dark orange urine suggests kidney disorder: inflammation (glomerulonephritis), infection (pyelonephritis), stones, tumor.

    Red and white cells may be elevated in practically all mentioned disorders. There are certain substances like oxalate or calcium that could tell more about stones. Elevated proteins are elevated in inflammation. Elevated white blood cells in the *blood speak for inflammation or infection. Ultrasound of the kidneys is usualy the first imaging investigation in suspected kidney disease.

    I strongly recommend you to ask for ultrasound of kidneys (done by nephrologist) since all your symptoms seem to arise from the urinary tract.

  • CL

    Jan,

    Thanks for the response. I had both an xray and ultrasound (a CT was suggested but declined due to the fact that I had just had one on my head for sinus issues and wanted to avoid more radiation exposure if it was not completely necessary). The ultrasound was fairly thorough from what I understood and there were small shadowy particles that were not confirmed as stones but assumed to be so. There were no apparent blockages/impingement on the kidney or bladder. They wouldn’t say further without a CT but the attending Dr. said she was pretty sure it would be stones.

    Now with sixth day of noticeably sharp pain and the added discomfort etc I am not as convinced that she was right. However, like I said the urine seems to have cleared up, but earlier unrelated blood tests (I got the pains after they were done) did show slightly elevated enzymes but that was said to be connected to diet or the possibility of a slightly fatty liver.

    All of this is rather sudden – until a month ago I had felt in relatively good health aside from my sinus issues. Although, I have had odd back pains when trying to sleep that seem to be unrelated to muscular or bone pain – they kind of mirror the areas I am having pain now but they would go away during the day and I attributed it to a bad mattress since they seemed to get ‘better’ when I slept on my harder couch.

    Would a CT scan help to clear up the questions over blockage and kidney health etc?

  • Jan Modric

    CL, CT is becoming the basic investigation for kidney stones nowadays. It may detect all types of kidney stones, small stones not detected by X-ray or ultrasound and most of other kidney disorders. From blood and urine tests doctor should be able to suspect stones and other kidney disorders like inflammation or infection. In any case your symptoms strongly suggest kidney involvement.

    Dark urine can be also from excessive bilirubin and this may arise from blood, liver or bile duct disorder. Bilirubin would be obviuosly elevated in the urine in this case and I guess it was checked.

    High doses of vitamin supplements, some medications and even some food like beetroots can cause dark color of urine.

    Sleeping on a hard matress is a good idea. Avoiding prolonged sitting or standing and lifting heavy burdens,and having regular daily walks may all help to your back. Physiotherapist can show you some exercises. All this may give you some back relief and help you to distinguish between back muscles/spine pain and kidney pain.

    Sharp pains are also in constipation. But white and red cells in the urine are likely from kidney disorder – stones or something other.

  • CL

    Thanks Jan. I feel much better informed now and will make sure I get the right stuff done to help me correct the problem. I really appreciate it.

  • Tye

    Hello and thank you for the time to read my post. I am extremely scared right now and Im unsure what to do at this point. For the past 5 years I have had a pain that comes and goes a very sharp pain that is in my lower pelvic region that normally lasts for a few minutes and will decrease to a dull constant pain and come and go for a few days then leave completely for a wile. I also occasionally get a very sharp immense pain under my left breast rib cage. (Im a 25 year old female) Well a few days ago the pain in my lower pelvic area started and I felt a lump(could be gas) but it went away. The pain has come and gone a few times but tonight I also had the sharp pain under my left breast under the rib cage and all of a sudden my back muscles on the left all the way up to my neck tightened so tight that my arm went a bit numb. I just found out that my family has history of heart disease and Im wondering who I should be seeing at this point? Could it be gas related or should I worry more about my heart? As well Im not sure if it makes a difference but I have also noticed that my urine is very dark. I drink water during the day and have not saw it this dark in a wile. I went to the local drug store and got an ept test, a urine test(tests for protein) and a vaginal test. All of them came back negative. Im just very worried and am unsure what to do at this point. Any information you could give would be greatly appreciated.

    Thank you

  • Jan Modric

    Tye,

    you should see a kidney doctor (nephrologist); if you can’t get an appointment soon, try to come in through ER. Dark urine clearly speaks for urinary tract involvement. Pain in the back and in upper left abdomen are likely from the left kidney and lower left abdominal pain is likely from the urether. It may be an urinary stone, a blod clot or a part of kidney tissue, which sticks in the urether for several seconds or minutes and is then released into the bladder.

  • kyo

    Hi Jan

    Continuing from our discussion,

    I actually proceed with the colonoscopy yesterday. The gasentrologist said that the colon is normal (no diverticulitis, polyps, cancer, what so ever). However he noted about internal hemorrhoid and he says its normal and it might sometimes cause bleeding (I think this is my case). He says no treatment is needed.

    I was wondering whether this hemorrhoid is what causes the lower left abdominal pain?

    Thank you very much

  • Jan Modric

    Kyo,

    internal hemorrhoids, if not thrombosed, usually don’t cause any pain at all. Thrombosed hemorrhoids would likely cause strong pain in the rectum (not likely in lower left abdomen) during the bowel movement; thrombosis would be also likely detected by colonoscopy.

    Pain disappearing after sleeping, drinking enough water and Royall Yelly strongly speaks for constipation as a cause. They are strong cramps in the colonic wall or colon distension from gas built in the colon that probably cause your pain. So, you can assume, your problem is constipation and possibly bloating.

    Ingesting enough fibers (but not exaggerating to avoid gas built), drinking enough fluid, physical and psychical activity and avoiding certain foods are main measures to fight with constipation. To help you find which foods to remove from the diet, you can read:
    http://www.healthhype.com/fodmap-diet-foods-to-avoid-in-ibs-bowel-disorders-with-bloating-and-gas.html

    This diet can also help you to lower cholesterol a bit; I do encourage you to solve this since raised cholesterol is a strong factor in developing atherosclerosis.

  • Pingback: Infectious Colitis - Causes & Treatment | Current Health Articles 2009()

  • Peter

    Hello,I have recently been diagnosed with 12 gallbladder polyps ranging from .2cm to .7cm in size.One doctor says I should have my GB removed and other says I should not worry and do just a follow-up.I feel I am still too young for operation.What is your suggestion?I am 35 yers old. thank you

  • Jan Modric

    Hello, Peter,

    gallbladder polyps do not need to be removed if they don’t cause any symptoms. But sometimes (rarely), when they are bigger than 1cm in size, they may develop into gallbladder cancer.

    Gallblader removal is not a big operation. On the other hand, some people experience diarrhea after gallbladder removal from constant flow of the bile into the bowel.

  • faith

    Pls i av pains in my lower left abdominal side with middle back pain and body itchy. Also i had a surgery on Appendicitis 4weeks ago pls advise as am also trying to concieve.

  • Peter

    What the symptoms should look like and how do I know for sure the symptoms come from polyps? thanks

  • Jan Modric

    Peter,

    gallbladder polyps and even gallbladder cancer commonly don’t trigger any symptoms until their developed stage. When symptoms appear it’s often late to do anything more. It is regular ultrasound checking of your gallbladder that shows how fast polyps grow; it is your doctor who can tell you how frequently you should have ultrasound.

    Gallbladder can be completely filled with polyps or stones and still causing no symptoms.

  • Jan Modric

    Faith,

    does all your body itch? Any rash? Are you taking any medication and which?

  • Neely

    I have been experiencing pain on My lower left side. The pain is a dull ache that stays with me during the day. Every once and a while a sharp pain comes on and then subsides. The pain starts in my lower back and moves around to my front. To void it burns. Sex is not very pleasant either.

    I had a Monarch Sling inserted back in February. I have had two UTI’s within weeks of each other. I have gone back to the Urologist and my Physician numerous times. My tests are now normal and they can not seem to locate what is wrong with me. It has become very frustrating. I am seeing the Physician again this week. I have asked to be referred to a Gyno but they feel that it may be a different direction that is causing the pain. However, I have had history with my Left ovary. Any suggestions???? I would like to get rid of this pain.

  • Jan Modric

    Neely,

    pain going from back to front and burning at voiding speeks for urinary tract disorder (kidney infection or inflammation, maybe stones…). Sharp pain in the lower left abdomen may arise from the left urether or ovary.

    Ultrasound of the kidneys could be the first next investigation.

  • alan

    I’ve been suffering from sharp llq abdominal pains for two months with constipation, bloating and fullness. The pain sometimes moves around to the right side but the sharp pain with tightness is left side above the hip. It is not tender to the touch. I also had bouts of gas and noise but not recent.

  • Jan Modric

    Alan,

    any fever, skin rash, nausea, weight loss, change in stool color?
    Causes of LLQ pain:
    http://www.healthhype.com/acute-and-chronic-left-lower-llq-abdominal-pain-diagnosis.html

  • faith

    body itch not really(sometimes after bath), I use folic acid but antibiotics some weeks ago after the surgery

  • Jan Modric

    There are several possible causes of left lower abdominal pian:
    http://www.healthhype.com/acute-and-chronic-left-lower-llq-abdominal-pain-diagnosis.html

    One possibility is overgrowth of Clostridium difficile bacteria caused by antibiotic treatment. In this case you’d probably experience some bloating, gas or diarrhea.

    Mid back pain + left lower abd. pain without any other bowel-related symptoms could arise from the thoracic spine (bulging disc, spondylitis or so).

  • alan

    Jan
    No none of the conditions listed. I have lost weight due to not eating beacause of the constipation and bloating. I did have black sttools 2 weeks ago, but has resumed yellow/brownish. I’ve told my doc and scheduled for a colonoscopy.

  • Jan Modric

    Alan,

    OK, if colonoscbpy will show nothing, you should be aware that black stool may be from stomach bleeding.

    Avoiding eating aggravates constipation. It is drinking enough water and eating enough fibers (bread, leafy vegetables, cereals…), being physically active, and coping with stress that help against constipation.

  • EB

    I am a 22 year old female. I have been experiencing abdominal pains on and off for about 4 yrs. I have had a colonoscopy and endoscopoy, and was diagnosed w/ IBS. For the past few weeks I have been getting pains in my left side just below my rib cage (w/ some swelling) and my lower abdomin. It feels like someone is stabbing below my ribs at times and is very dicomforting. I seem to only feel relief after burping and laying still…. I have also been urinating more frequently. What could this possiby be?

  • Jan Modric

    EB,

    it is quite possible that pain below your left ribs is caused by gas trapped in the left part of the transverse colon. It’s a common issue. I believe you can solve this problem with excluding/limiting one or more of the following nutrients from your diet:
    – fructose, sorbitol and HFCS (fruits and several artificially sweetened packaged foods, including diet soda, sugar-free chewing gum)
    – lactose (dairy)
    – galactans (in legumes)
    – fructans (in wheat and onions)

    Details:
    http://www.healthhype.com/fodmap-diet-foods-to-avoid-in-ibs-bowel-disorders-with-bloating-and-gas.html

    Frequent urinating my result from gas in the rectum that presses upon the bladder and irritates it. If you also experience burning during urination, and the urine has changed color or smell, it may be urinary infection.

  • EB

    Thank you for the reply. I received a call from my doctor today. I went to get an ultra sound on Tuesday, and she told me that they had found something. There is a lump on my left ovary, and they believe I have stomach ulcers. I am currently setting up appointments to go see a specialist asap. They have also ruled out a cyst w/ the u/s. What else could this possibly be. Thank you in advance.

  • Jan Modric

    EB,

    if you burp excessively (?), you can ask for “urea breath test for H. pylori”. This bacterium often causes inflammation of the stomach and may produce a lot of gas.

    Another cause of upper abdominal bloating is small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO), Dx is with “hydrogen breath test with lactulose”.

    Left ovary disorders doesn’t likely cause pain under the ribs (you may still have ovary cysts, only that this doesn’t explain under-rib pain) , and I believe stomach ulcers should be clearly seen during upper endoscopy you’ve had.

    Enlarged spleen was probably excluded during the ultrasound…

    Pain from kidney stones or infection can radiate to upper abdomen and causes frequent urination…

    Anyway, if pain is relieved by burping, the first thought is a gas somwhere in your gut. So, consider to ask about breath tests.

  • Chris

    I need some help! I have been having abdominal pain on the left side only. This pain started up under the ribs in the stomach area. Exactly two weeks ago! Now the pain seems straight left of the belly button and lower abdomen I also feel it in the lower left back and sides. Also strange note: A pain in my left foot and left testicle. I went to my normal Doc, she said it was a muscle. I was not worried until burning and itching started so I went to the ER on 09-18-09 that is one week after the pain started. They did blood work, a urine test, and an ultra sound of the testicular area. ER said they found nothing! I was just having some testicular pain and did not give a reason.

    I went back to my doc she has me scheduled for a CT in the mean time I went to a chiropractic. I am still in pain it feels like someone is squeezing some organ in my body; it also feels like someone is kicking me in the left testicle it also feels like someone is stabbing me in the bottom of my foot.

    When I sit up makes it worse, laying down makes it better, elevation of my left leg and foot helps. When I belch or pass gas I feel better. After eating it seems a bit worse or better I have not decided. Does anyone have any ideas what is wrong with me?

  • Jan Modric

    Chris,

    few questions:
    – What happened 2 weeks ago? Have you eaten something different; have you had some vigorous physical work or have you lifted something heavy?
    – Would you say you are bloated in last two weeks more than you were before?
    – Have you noticed change color of urine or burning at urination?
    – When you sit down, does pain worsen immediately?

    Possibilities:
    – pinched spinal nerves from bulging discs
    – psoas muscle syndrome
    – kidney (urinary) stones
    – intestinal hernia

    Depending on the causing event, there could be more than one condition that cause your symptoms

  • Halima

    Thank you for your response.

    To answer the questions on my/your post from July 8, 2009.

    I’m a 30 year old female, I had splenectomy almost 3 years ago, 10.27.2006, as I said my spleen was enlarged because I had a blood disorder, hereditary spherocytosis, it was quite largem 983gms, so I ended up having open splenectomy with 44 stitches. About 6 weeks after surgery because I was in a lot of pain I was diagnosed with PVT, portal vein thrombosis, likely a side efect from the surgey, I was on anticoagulants for 6 months and that was it. I’ve continued to have left side pain, my rib cage, breast bone, more like tenderness then pain and the wright thing is that my chest wall is tender right to the middle of the chest and then i have no pain whatsoever on my right side. It has spread to my back left side, lower and upper, shoulder, neck to the jaw, only my left side. I cant say that I’m ever pain free because it’s always there. If I tough a spot on my left side I feel pain for few minutes afterwards. My left breast is tender as well as my inner left arm. I also have quite elevated white blood cells, couldnt figure out the cause. I’m not taking any medication. I’ve had CT’s, numerous, blood tests, different doctor opinions, nothing found. I was told that it’s possible I have scarring issues but have not been reffered to a surgeon for further investigation.
    My pain/tenderness is present at all times, the only thing that makes is worse is when I stress out, then its sharp pain from my chest/neck/jaw, almost like a cramp. It lasts for few minutes sometimes longer.
    I was reffered to a neurologist but havent seen one yet. Honestly, I’m just exhausted from all the tests and my primary telling me he dont know what’s wrong with me or what to do next.
    I cannot get a good nights sleep, tried new pillows, few different pillows, new matresses, even foam, nothing works. I feel very stiff when I wake up and very tired. On some nights I just stay up when I wake up because it hurts more to lay down. I cannot lay flat on my back or stomack on hard surface, not even for a minute.
    Thank you, any suggestions are very much appreciated.

  • Halima

    I forgot to add… another thing that makes my pain worse is stomack fullness, regardless if I eat or drink a glass of water. This usuallly makes the pain spred to shoulder/neck

  • Jan Modric

    Halima,

    it is an irritaded diaphragm (the main breathing muscle, separating the chest and abdomen), which can cause pains on your left side. I would think that scaring tissue (“adhesions”) grown after splenectomy may pull the diaphragm in a certain direction and cause this pain.

    The stomach lies dierctly under the diaphragm. When you start to eat or drink, stomach muscles start to contract (persistalsis) and could irritate the diaphragm and cause the same symptoms as adhesions.

    But, maybe even moving of the esophagus could irritate the diaphragm or some structure in the chest thus causing the pain.

    Do you have exxecive hiccups?
    Is your pain also triggered by cough?

    I suggest you to read through patient’s medical history questionnaire here:
    http://www.healthhype.com/patients-personal-and-family-medical-history-questionnaire-form.html

    …to see, if you can recall any other symptom or certain circumstance..

    Have you try some pain-killers like ibuprofen? This could help you, if you have costochondritis or fibromialgia.

    Another possibility would be spondylitis (spinal arthritis)…

    What to do:
    1. Laparoscopy – endoscopic investigation of the abdominmal cavity – doctor could see if there is any excessive fibrous tissue (scarring) there.
    2. MRI of your cervical and thoracic spine to check for spondylitis (leukocytes are elevated in spondylitis…)

  • Halima

    Thank you very much for your response.

    No, I do not have any hickups and my pain is not triggered by a cough. I’ve taken ibuprophen in the past I believe for 4 weeks about a year ago and it didn’t help because my doctors thought it could be costochondritis.

    I’ve been trying to avoid Laparoscopy, I’m just afraid that another fairly common procedure ends up being something big again but it seems that’s the next step to do.

  • Bander

    I’m a 32 yr old male…the pain started 4 months ago when I felt left side chest pain…it was a dull kind of pain as if something was pushing on my diaphragm. I did all the cardiac tests (EKG, Stress Test, Ultrasound of the heart) and the results came out ok. This put me at ease for three months and I just lived with that pain. About a month ago the pain increased and began spreading to other locations. No longer do I feel the pain on the front left chest but it’s now mainly below my ribcage, my back, left side of chest under my arm, lower left abdomen (mainly from the back side) and lately I have had severe pain in my left leg that came for two days (I don’t know if it’s related!). During the last month I did feel some itching for about a week but is now gone. I have done a CT scan on the pancreas, spleen, liver, kidney and results were all ok. Lately (past week), I have been noticing Irregular bowel movement as I have to go to the bathroom a lot more often.

  • Jan Modric

    Bander,

    gas, trapped in the left part of the transverse part of the colon may cause most of symptoms you’re describing (except itch and leg pain). Gas distends the colon, which presses upon the diaphragm, what causes chest (and eventual shoulder) pain.

    A common cause of gas is irritable bowel syndrome – your bowel gets irritated by certain foods and additionally by eventual stress.
    You can try “low-fodmap diet” for few days to see if it helps:
    http://www.healthhype.com/fodmap-diet-foods-to-avoid-in-ibs-bowel-disorders-with-bloating-and-gas.html

    Itch was all over? Do you think it was related to some food? Itch appears in food allergies (few minutes to several hours after food ingestion).

    Where was the leg pain located?

  • Bander

    Yes the it was all over but I no longer feel the itch as i did a couple of weeks ago. The left leg pain starts from my foot all the way to my knee!
    I just remembered now that one day during the past 3 months i noticed my stool color was completely white! just like mucus and it only happened once, any explanation for that? is it related?

  • Jan Modric

    Bander,

    apart from allergy, itch could be caused by intestinal parasites.

    Pain from the foot to the knee could be from pinched sciatic nerve (from bulging disc). This may happen after lifting something heavy, or after prolonged sitting or driving.

    White stool – if it was translucent, not reall white, but, like you say, as mucus – it may appear in IBS and in intestinal parasites.
    Other causes of mucus in the stool:
    http://www.healthhype.com/what-causes-mucus-in-bowel-movement.html

    I recommend you to try a low-fodmap diet (link in my previous comment), and if you have IBS, this diet may help you in few days.

    If no improvement within a weak, you can ask a doctor to order a stool test for parasites.

    If your stool was actually bright white, sticky, greasy, this speaks for fat malabsorption.

    So, try diet and maybe a test for parasites before thinking on other intestinal disorders.

  • Tan

    I’ve been experiencing discomfort from around left ribcage (side and back parts)to the hip area. I had urine infection since Sunday with very strong odour. Started on Pyridium Monday to Wednesday (2 tabs 3 timespd). Not much relief. The pain on the left started today and I’m wondering ifit has anything to do with the actual bladder infection. I used to suffer continuosly with bladder infections and 5 years ago had a bladder cyst removed. Can this pain be related to the kidney? If kidney infection, where exactly would the pain be? Consulting with urologist next Monday

  • Chris

    Jan Modric

    No heavy lifting.
    No difference in color of urine
    No I have not been eating anything different.

    I would say I might feel a little bit bloated. The pain does not start when I sit immediately but over time. Like when I wake up in the morning I think it’s going to be a good day. After I have been up awhile it starts to hurt.

    2 weeks ago: Last thing I remember doing before I got a sharp pain in my side and my left testicle ascended was I had masturbated. The testicle descended immediately and the pain never has gone away yet.

    My doc says Urine is clean and clear. They also said no hernia. No turned in testicle. They did an ultrasound of the testicular area and found nothing. I just had my ct scan yesterday. No word yet!

    Feels now like I am still getting kicked in the left testicle. Also feels like I just did a lot of sit ups. With a glassy feeling in my stomach. And a burning pulling feeling like some thing is being squished inside left stomach. Burning and itching too in the lower left pelvic area.

  • Angelica39

    Hi,

    I am a female in my mid 20’s and have had severe pain in my left stomach where rib cage is at that also shoots down to pelvic area and sometimes to my back. I have had blood test, stool samples, CT scan, ultrasound, and a recent colonoscopy. ALL were normal. I have no medical insurance and no Primary Care doctor since the company i worked for went bankrupt.

    I do have lots of diareah, some constipation, i get green stools and frequently get mucus in my bowel movements- lots of mucus. I do have a very small umbilical hernia and had my gallbladder taken out 2 yrs ago. Pain is so bad i cannot jog, walk for long, and hurts constantly.

    I need advice on what I should do next? Go get more test- but which? Should i just try to live with it and igrnore the symptoms? Thank you for any advice.

  • Jan Modric

    Tan,

    in kidney infection, you might (not necessary) have tender area over the left kidney (on the left side of the back, just under and below the lower rib, meaning if you hit that area slightly with the fist, you could feel pain. Pain (not tenderness) would eventually spread to the left upper abdomen.

    Pain may cause constipation, and this can be accompanied with gas built in the transverse and left part of the colon and cause pain. If you have appointment THIS Monday, it sounds ok; I wouldn’t wait to the NEXT Monday, since if you leave a kidney infection untreated, some complications may occur.

  • Jan Modric

    Chris,

    by itching, do you mean a feeling that makes you scratch? Or is it like tingling?

    If it is an itch, and no rash, it may be from the colon, like parasites or something other in the colon.

    If it is tingling, it may be from something pressing on the nerve(s) in your thoracic and lumbar spine. Foot pain speaks for this. Now, the question is, if the pressure on the nerve is caused by a spinal disorder (bulging disc, spondylitis…Lifting a streched left leg should actually cause pain in this case…

  • Jan Modric

    Angelica,

    when did diarrhea start: after gallbladder removal, later, or was there even before?

    Did you have stool test for parasites? This test is often false negative…

    One possible cause of green diarrhea is bile, not been completely re-absorbed in the small intestine, thus reaching the colon and irritating it. In this case, adding fibers (metamucil, psyllium husk..), which can bind bile salts, could help.

    Next: IBS.
    Foods to avoid in IBS
    http://www.healthhype.com/fodmap-diet-foods-to-avoid-in-ibs-bowel-disorders-with-bloating-and-gas.html

  • Tan

    apart from urine infection now, i always have a problem with left hip. Did a scan/xray 2004 for bladder cyst. Results for abdomen read “sclerotic focus noted in relation to the left supra acetubular hip bone probably an incidental bone island”

    what does that mean?

  • Jan Modric

    Tan,

    “sclerotic focus” = a small area of dense bone tissue
    “noted in relation to the left supra acetubular hip bone” = in the pelvic bone, above the hip joint (acetabulum is a concave part of the hip joint).

    Explanation: “probably an incidental bone island”: doctor doesn’t think this needs any attention, but if pain in the hip is affecting your life, you might want to ask an orthopedist for furter investigation of your pelvic bones.

  • Njoku

    I am die slowly of pains in my left upper abdomen. It was diagnosed many years ago as ulcer. Then, anytime I take the medication prescribed by my doctor, I will get well, but after a while, it will come up. Recently, i started having hot sensation in my legs muscles and pains in my shoulder which is very painful. i met my doctor and he suspected rumatisim because I did some strenous diging of the earth in the cause of harvesting plant roots, but he was afraid to give me strong drugs/medication because of my long lived stomach pains called ulcer. However, he gave me mild prescription.Recently, I discovered that my inside lower abdomen is paining me mostly, in the night when I am sleeping and gives me discomfort. It comes and goes especially, whenever I eat heavy meal and fruits before sleeping. I thought it is because I sit almost the whole day in the class as a student. Please, what is the solution to my problems.

  • Jan Modric

    Njoku,

    was it a stomach (gastric) ulcer and was it confirmed by a colonoscopy? What exact medications you are taking for an ulcer? One common reason for non-healing stomach ulcer is an infection with Helycobacter pylori bacteria. An “urea breath test for H. pylori”, performed by a gastroenterologist, may confirm/exclude this infection.

    Your pains may be also called by gas built in your intestine. If you find fruits problematic, have a few days lasting low-fructose diet trial; read details here:
    http://www.healthhype.com/low-fructose-diet-in-fructose-malabsorption.html

    If this doesn’t help, you may want to try a more rigorous “low-fodmap diet”:
    http://www.healthhype.com/fodmap-diet-foods-to-avoid-in-ibs-bowel-disorders-with-bloating-and-gas.html

    Foods, mentioned in the above articles often cause bloating and pains in the stomach.

  • nicole

    Problems started 8 months ago. Persistent fever of 99-100 one month later had appendicitis. 2 months later respiratory infection and vaginal infection both cleared up. Have had severe painful diarrhea for about 1-2 years. A few weeks ago they removed my gallbladder because it was diseased. Now I’m recovering but still have these symptoms of persistent fever *everyday*, severe painful diarrhea even if I haven’t eaten, sharp pain and sometimes dull to nagging throughout the day everyday in the middle left abdomen. It hurts really bad to go to the bathroom for BM’s I feel the pain in the middle left abdominal area and down low throughout lower abdominal area and it radiates to my back. Suppose to see two specialist next week…rhumetoid and GI to see if they can figure out what else is going on. Oh and I also have a hemmrrhagic cyst on right ovary. I could use some help figuring out why the constant pain, fever, exhaustion, nausea, diarrhea are occuring. I feel like my body is attacking itself these past few months but I have no clue what they are going to look for.

    I feel horrible everyday….could use some ideas please. I am also only 29 years old.

  • Jan Modric

    Nicole,

    fever, left abdominal pain and diarrhea suggest a colonic inflammation. Gastroenterologist can perform an X-ray with barium enema and colonoscopy to see, if your colonic mucosal layer is inflammed.

    Other disorders, like ovarian cyst, which can eventually spread to the blood, should be considered and treated as appropriate.

  • Chris

    Jan Modric

    So the CT scan showed nothing wrong with the internal organs. No masses, tumors, stones, my doc said everything looks fine.

    ?!!?!

  • Jan Modric

    Chris, would you say that you feel pain in red areas, like here:
    http://backpainadvice.files.wordpress.com/2008/12/06-420radiculopathy.jpg

    Do abdominal, testicular and leg pain all appear at the same time?

  • Cathy

    I have been suffering a lighthead and dizziness for over 3 years now along with severe lower abdominal pain and feel it is related to bowel function. I feel dizzy shortly after I eat a meal, I then suffer severe lower left (front joint of thigh and pelvis) and front pain (under pubic bone). This pain then builds up and up until I am able to have a bowel movement and gets so bad I feel I may pass out and I see flashes infront of my eyes. My eyes get heavy and glazey too. It feels like a blockage and the pains builds until it can push through. The pain keeps me awake at night and affects day to day things and more so the dizziness that comes with it (sometimes a foggy\spaced out feeling). When the pain is bad it radiates down the left leg. It hurts to lift my left leg at that stage. All symptoms seem to be better when I have a bowel motion, but beforehand the pain and feeling is unbearable. I have had a laparoscopy and they found no endometriosis. I had a colonoscopy and the bowel is okay. The consultant says the sigmoid muscle isn’t working right and said I have ODS and prescribed Amitriptyline which doesn’t actually help me go to the bathroom and the pain still exists and it makes me feel down. I googled Obsrtuctive Defeactation Syndrome and no site says to use Amitriptyline for it. Is there something outside the bowel on the left side and really low down at the front that can affect the bowel and when stools try to pass through to cause such pain and dizziness. Does the bowel need room to stretch and it cant with me? I have tired high fiber diets and other things to help me ‘go’, but to no avail – the actual motion causes these symptoms. If I have diarrhea sometimes I get a really drunk spacy feeling until it passes through. It is a horrible sensation, I actually stagger when I walk when feeling like that. Does a blockage or obstruction, if that is what it is, cause all these symptoms? I am desperate for help and between the pain and the lighthead it is getting me really down. I am thinking my last hope is to ask for a CT\MRI of the whole pelvis.

  • Jan Modric

    Cathy,
    how old are you?

    Yes, it’s possible that a benign tumor, like fibroma, or ovarian cyst, or adhesions (fibrous tissue) would press on the sigma and obstruct defecation.

    Another cause could be a bulging disc ot other spinal disorder at the level from Th10 to L3, especially because you are mentioning left leg pain.

    So, maybe you should see neurologist before continuing with bowel- related investigations.

  • Cathy

    Jan, thank you for the advice. I am 33yrs old, and have no children. The area is very tender and painful to touch also. I will ask my GP about the neurologist path. I think I would be happy if I got a scan to see what it is.
    Thank you…

  • p.widiaruta

    Dear Mr. Jan Modric,
    I’d like to ask your help about my persistent symptom.

    I am male 32 years old and basically healthy, with height 181 cm and weight 88kg.

    For the last 29 months (more than 2 years already) I have slight discomfort around my left abdomen. Rather than pain, I prefer discomfort, since it doesn’t hurt me.

    It just like a feeling that a golf ball is stuck there. It doesn’t have one exact location, sometimes it is in left side around navel, sometimes around my left groin, but most often it will come around lower rib cage.

    It is intermittent (comes and goes), usually it will comes in evening after I am tired with my works. Fortunately, when I sleep and wake up in the morning the discomfort will be gone completely. The symptom is quite similar with splenic flexure syndrome, however, it doesn’t always come after meal and it doesn’t get better when I pass my gas.
    The discomfort often come after I sit in front of my computer or driving my motorbike for long time.

    I have chest X ray and routine medical check up and blood test that showed no abnormalities since 4 years ago.

    I am just afraid of colorectal cancer, however my doctor doesn’t suspect it. He said that USG or colonoscopy is not needed since I don’t have other symptom of cancer, and the symptom already there for long time (chronic).He said that cancer symptoms tend to get worse quickly rather become chronic.

    Sometimes (very rare,maybe only twice a year) I have a small amount red fresh blood in my stool, but the doctor diagnosed it as hemorrhoid and doesn’t concern about it.

    Could you please give me some advice, I know that cancer is less likely because my symptom is the chronic one and I have no other symptoms, but I need to ease my mind.

    best regards

  • Jan Modric

    Cathy,

    does the leg pain spread down the leg to the knee or even further?

    Also, do you feel dizzy nd have eye flashes before the pain occurs, or this is directly related to pain?

    You can also check medical history questionnaire, which can help you to express eventual other symptoms:
    http://www.healthhype.com/patients-personal-and-family-medical-history-questionnaire-form.html

  • Jan Modric

    Hi, p.widiaruta.

    Colorectal cancer at your age appears almost exclusively in a familial adenomatous polyposis – a hereditary form of cancer. It is extremely rare, and it would appear in your family, if you had had it.

    On the other hand, I encourage you to find out for sure what’s the cause of bleeding. It may be hemorrhoids, but even if you have hemorrhoids, they are not necessary the cause of bleeding. They may be polyps. Discomfort, as you describe it, seems to arise from the left, descending part of your colon. If this discomfort arises from the gas, or from food irritation, then a 4 day low-fodmap diet trial would probably help you:
    http://www.healthhype.com/fodmap-diet-foods-to-avoid-in-ibs-bowel-disorders-with-bloating-and-gas.html

    Bleeding is not likely food-related, though. Colorectal cancer typically appears after 50, but there are other colonic disorders that could show up during – colonoscopy.

  • p.widiaruta

    Dear Mr. Modric

    Thank you for your answer, I really appreciate it.

    My family history is quite clean from cancer, nobody died from any form of cancer.

    Hemorrhoids itself really runs in my family, since my mother and brother have it. When I have bleeding, it usually in very small amount, very rare, and accompanied with anal pain.

    I have read the site which you referred to me, about the FODMAD diet and it is interesting. Almost all foods which cause gas are in my daily menu such as garlic and coffee. I will try and wish it can help.

    Once more thank you, and wish you will maintain this site since it is really help and useful.

  • jdillard

    Hi I’m 20 I’ve been having severe pain on my lower left abdomen. its constant with a few sharp pains here and there. No fever, no constipation, frequent urination, and indigestion. With lots of shoulder and knee pain as well. Do you know what the problem could be.

  • jdillard

    also with irregular periods and bleeding in between periods

  • Jan Modric

    Hi, jdillard,

    left side abdominal pain and irregular cycle suggest a disorder of the left ovary. Blood levels of sex hormones and ultrasound of the abdomen could be done first.

    Do you have any vaginal discharge? Any skin rash, mouth ulcers, eye redness?

  • jdillard

    No vaginal discharge, yes on the eye redness and yes on mouth ulcers but they arent the normal mouth ucler they are more like little bumps filled with clear liquid. And they can be easily popped but hurt. And no skin rash that i have noticed.

  • Jan Modric

    Jdillard,

    I suggest you to read about Reiter’s syndrome:
    http://www.patient.co.uk/health/Reactive-Arthritis.htm

    Are you sure that both knee and shoulder joint symptoms appeared at the same time as abdominal pain, or one or another could be a separate problem?
    Another cause I can think of, is Crohn’s disease (search to check symptoms), an inflammation of the colon and other parts of the gut. This would require colonoscopy to prove. Celiac disease is another intestinal disorder with possible systemic symptoms. Symptoms would lessen within few days of gluten-free diet, diagnosis is made by blood test and/or biopsy of duodenal mucosa during upper endoscopy.

  • jdillard

    There was a lot of knee and shoulder pain the past two weeks and now three days ago the abdominal pain showed up. Also some toe pain but only when i’m on my feet a lot.

  • Jan Modric

    Jdillard,

    to find out the cause, it helps a lot, if you write down all symptoms you have now, and all your medical history:
    http://www.healthhype.com/patients-personal-and-family-medical-history-questionnaire-form.html

  • Lorrie

    Hi i am a 19 Female and i am having very bad pain in my lower stomach and also when it is hurting, my left knee is also hurting very bad i had a UTI about a month ago but nothing serious. Is there anything you could tell me about this?

  • Jan Modric

    Lorrie,

    knee pain after UTI may occur in Reiter’s syndrome (reacive arthritis).

  • heatherbell69

    Hi. I am praying you can shed some light on a reoccuring problem. I work in a residential facility and have had a resident that is experiencing consistant pain on her left side. She first noticed that her belly button became slightly distended and over the last few weeks she is developing lumps that start at her lower left rib cage and follow along to her belly button. She has had a peptic ulcer but has taken medication for it for many years and it has not been an issue. Xrays and CT scan did not show anything. I am guessing an ultrasound may need to be done as it should show more. She is 26 yrs old and desparately needs assistance. The doctors where we ar eare not very aggressive in treatment or diagnosis. Her mom died of cancer and she is fearing the worse. Any light you can shed would be greatly appreciated. Thank You.

  • jessamaria

    Hi there-
    I am a 25 yr old female with pain/discomfort on my left side of my abdomin. It almost always starts while I am sleeping or laying down, and a lot of times wakes me up at night. It feels like a throbbing somewhat side ache. when I wake up some days it lasts
    well into the rest of the day, slowly going away. It does not seem to matter what time I eat before I go to bed or what I eat. I have tried everything to see if I can pinpoint what is the cause. It is not a horrible pain, but it is a pain enough to wake me up and I have a lot of discomfort. Any Ideas?? I also Have a lot of problems with loose stools. Ulcerative Colitis, Chrones and pancreatitis run in my family. Not sure if these symptoms are for any of those, but thought maybe? Please let me know any thoughts! I just do not want to waste time with a colonoscopy if it is nothing! Thanks.

  • Jan Modric

    Heatherbell69,

    The lumps are visible? How big they are? One thought is intestinal hernia – loops of intestine are pushed through weak abdominal muscles. X-ray and CT does not necessary show any change, but yes, ultrasound could be an option. If possible she should see a doctor she can trust. It’s not likely to be a cancer. It’s extremely unlikely any type of cancer would appear as visible lumps on the abdominal wall, especially in her young age.

  • Jan Modric

    Jessamaria,

    left side abdominal pain, loose stools and Crohn’s/ulcerative colitis in your family is a good combination of reasons to have a colonoscopy. Before that you can discuss with your doctor to have a “lower GI” – an X-ray with barium enema that shows an outline of the colon, and can show eventual changes caused by inflammation in the colon.

  • heatherbell69

    She has 3 lumps approx 2 1/2 to 3 inches long each. Her side is swollen so they are not visible to the eye but can be easily felt by running your hand over her side. The most noticable change she experienced at the onset of her pain was her bellybutton began pushing outward. I pray that it is nothing more serious than what you have advised. Her mother died at in her mid 30’s, hence the concern. Thank you for your quick response and I will let her know and give you any feedback I hear. ~ Heather

  • Jan Modric

    Heatherbell69,

    she has swollen left side (an only left side)? Beside intestinal loops, there may be an air from a perforated bowel or free liquid (ascites) from a liver problem. This sound much more serious as it sounded after your first question. What exact cancer her mother had?

    Here’s medical history questionaire to help both of you to recal additional symptms and their time course:
    http://www.healthhype.com/patients-personal-and-family-medical-history-questionnaire-form.html

    You two should start to actively seek for a reliable doctor. Carefully writing down all her symptoms could shed more light to her overall condition.

  • lagi

    Hi. I have colds for the last 10 days and I am constantly coughing. I dont have any fever, nor am I vomitting. However, when I cough or sneeze, I experience a sharp pain on my lower lefy abdomen (a little bit lower to my belly button). Also, I had observed that I inconsistently have cloudy urine and had discharge with a little blood. Is there any reason to be alarm? I have not been to the doctor since I thought that if my cold will go away the pain will also subside. Thank you.

  • Jan Modric

    To lagi.

    How old are you, male/female?

    Cloudy urine with blood IS a reason for alarm: it can be an infection, urinary stones or other cause, including cancer. I recommend you visiting a doctor soon.

  • lagi

    Hi Jan,I am a female in my mid 30s. Thanks so much for your fast reply Jan. Really appreciate it.

    Lagi

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  • brenda

    im 43 years old regular periods, on monday on lower left pelvic noticed a dull ache, monday tues and wed morning was waking up feeling sick and had bad pains in stomach, ignore it thought it might be trapped wind, everything i could put up with untill 10.00am wed morning and the pain stabbed me like crazy getting worse asthe day stretched out, i took lots of painkillers, and went to have a hot bath and went to bed wasnt still suffering this pain couldnt stand up straight and even laying still it was stabbing me, as the night went in, i could feel the pain moving across the bikini line and into and around the right hand pelvic sort of near the appendix, butthe mass of pain was still centred on the left hand side, i went to my gp thursday am cos i was by now crying with the pain, he gave me cefalexin 3 tabs per day, and has sent me for a blood test friday am, but i am now finding that the pain is in my sides and ribs and i have for the last 3 days bright yellow stools and as i mentioned earlier a sick feeling. somebody said it might be PID, but i would so appreciate your views, the gp also mentioned my temp was slightly high. Kind regards Brendax

  • Jan Modric

    To brenda.

    Any burning at urination, chnged urine color, or vaginal discharge?

    Pain on both sides and under the ribs, suggest cramps or gas built within the colon; yellow bowel movements are simply from fast persistalsis from any cause.

    If your symptoms are only gastrointestinal (plus temperature), bacterial or parasitic food poisoning should be suspected first and stool test done.

  • Mark

    I am a 37 yo male with left abdominal pain. I do have gas. I’m not constipated. I don’t have any blood in urine or bowel movement. No fever or vomiting.

  • Jan Modric

    Mark,

    when did your symptoms start, are they constant, are they related to meals, or certain type of food (dairy, fruits..)?
    What is your diet?

  • sonson

    for about a month now I have been experiencing pain just left of my naval. The pain started roughly two weeks after I got off an antibiotic for a uti. The pain has been becomming more severe so I went to urgent care. The doctor said I was constipated (although he did not do an exam). I have regular bm’s that are not hard or dry, nor do I strain to have a movement. I have made an appt to see an obgyn, but I am not sure what kind of doctor to see, and obviously uc is too busy to take me seriously.

  • sonson

    by the way I am a 26yr old female who is definitely not pregnang

  • Jan Modric

    To sonson.

    Did you have any abdominal pain before starting antibiotics, and was it on the same site as you feel it now? I mean, would you say that uti has came back – any cloudy urine or burning at urination?
    If not, and if you have no loose stools, obgyn could be a good choice.

    You can check this medical history questionnaire to prepare yourself for an appointment. You can mention to the doctor in advance, you are not constipated or having diarrhea, so the doc can concentrate on other causes.

  • sonson

    while i was at urgent care i insisted they check me for a uti. they said the culture was negative. It seems that the pain is lasting longer each time that i feel it and also becomming more painful which is why I am so worried about going to the right specialist the first time around.

  • sonson

    thank you for your help

  • KatieS

    Hey Jan.
    I’m a 19 year-old female. About a year ago I felt a sharp and VERY strong tearing pain in my lower left abdomen. The pain is more specifically two to three inches in from my hip and it seems to move . . . . It only lasted about 10 minutes. Throughout the year it has happened 5-10 more times. Each time it’s just as bad (move you to tears, bad). Any idea what this could be?

  • Jan Modric

    KatieS,

    can you identify any trigger (exercise, meal..) or time of the day when pain occurs, or is it completely random?

    Any burning urination, blood in urine around the painful event? Changed bowel habit in the last year?

    Sharp transient pain occurs in spasm of a tubular organ (urether, Fallopian tube, intestine) and ovarian cysts.

    You should consider:

    – Ultrasound of kidneys that can detect eventual urinary stones (that travel down to the lower part of the ureter and temporarly lodge within it and cause pain) and
    – gynecological examination with eventual investigations as instructed by your doctor

  • Hannah

    Where do I start? I have been suffering with this condition now for 8 years. I went on holiday when I was 18 to Cyprus which is where i believe this all started. Whilst away I was hospitalised with salmonella which was horrendous, after returning to the UK I continued to have quite an upset stomach and a trip to the doctors saw me on a course of anti biotics which cleared it up. However this was only the beginning of worse to come. I began to have stomach cramps followed by diarrhoea directly after eating, and periods of constipation which after several months I consulted the doctor to be told I had IBS. Over the course of the next couple of years I have changed my diet and have also been prescribed colofac, mebeverine, laxatives, fybogel etc. but the problems have just got worse.
    In the last three years my life has become hell. Eating is something people take for granted as every time I put anything in my mouth, including some drinks; I am waiting to see the outcome. I have learned what to expect, after eating if 20-30minutes have gone by with no pain then I have got off lightly whereas if I start to hear gurgling or any pain I know I’m in for it. The pain begins with stomach cramps/spasms which increase in severity until I need to make a run to the toilet. There have been times when the pain has got too much and I have actually vomited or experienced pins and needles in my hands and feet before passing out on the bathroom floor. It is almost as if my body is getting rid of what I have just eaten in record time and once it gets through my system I have violent diarrhoea. The whole process of cramps then diarrhoea repeats about 3-4 times until there seems to be nothing left after which I am completely exhausted and feel like I have done ten rounds with Mike Tyson and usually need to go to bed and sleep. During the spasms I can often hear the gurgling inside I become grey looking and sweat profusely needing to strip off and becoming soaked in sweat. The diarrhoea can be very painful, there is often blood in the toilet which could be from the piles I have incurred from all of this, and it smells horrible almost like a bile smell like something is off and can sometimes be yellowy in colour.
    On one occasion my partner phoned an ambulance upon me passing out and hitting the floor I was rolling around the landing upon their arrival stark naked before running to the toilet with diarrhoea foolishly I didn’t go into hospital as by this point I just wanted to go to sleep.
    This is something that has been going on for too long, I have had many trips to the doctor where I have sat sobbing only to be told once again that it is IBS and in the words of one doctor ‘it’s in your head deal with it’. It only seems to be getting worse I have had to take time off work which is not thought to highly of at work it’s bad enough having time to go to see the doctors which in their eyes is inconvenient. I really cannot cope anymore, I don’t know how much more I can take, and if this is what life holds for me then it’s cruel. I am only 25 I have a good diet I don’t drink, smoke etc. and just to be able to eat something without actually feeling like someone is stabbing you or without messing yourself if you don’t get to a toilet would be a dream come true. I know lots of people with IBS but none who suffer with the pain and spasms to the extent I do. It also often feels like part of my bowel may not be working or something is getting stuck as it seems to feel like I am completely full (despite passing small BM on a daily basis) and when the spasms start it feels like everything is being forced through and I have solid stools firstly followed by diarrhoea and this is on mass. I have had a sigmoid endoscopy and everything looks fine and I am now on the FODMAP diet and whilst the episodes are further apart they are more severe. Please help me as no one else will I am willing to try anything to take control of my life back but am beginning to lose faith

  • Jan Modric

    Hannah,

    I guess you’ve had some stool tests for bacteria and parasites. There’s also overgrowth of Clostridium difficile bacterium possible (barnyard smell is typical) and this requires a separate test – stool test for C-Diff toxin.

    How strict is your low-FODMAP diet?

  • Hannah

    No I haven’t had any of those tests done I have struggled to get anything done apart from being put on antispasmodic medication. i’ve pushed for more investugation and have had a sigmoid endoscopy but nothing showed up and they have told me it is IBS due to me having sallmonella which they think is the original trigger but I just didn’t think IBS could be this severe. My FODMAP diet is STRICT it’s not low FODMAP more like no FODMAP however this still doesn’t seem to be problem free it is better but far from perfect and they just keep telling me to continue as they’re sure this will work I think they are getting fed up to be honest but they are not the ones living like this. What are those other tests you have referred to what would they be looking for. Thank you for your quick reply I have an appointment with a consultant tomorrow (although have had to pay to privately as not getting anywhere through my GP) I shall ask about these tests.

  • Jan Modric

    Hannah,

    all details about the bowel movement (smell of the bile, starts as solid then loose stool..), bowel color, does stool floats, is there any mucus and all other details of your current and past medical history can be of big importance to get proper diagnosis.
    Check medical history questionnaire and write down any symptoms, previous results of tests, past and current medications, eventual surgeries…in a chronological way.

    One thougt I had, maybe you have developed colonic adhesions – a scar-like tissue conecting the colon and a certain adjacent organ, pulling the colon from its original position and causing its blockage. Endometriosis and pelvic inflammatory disease are common causes. Maybe salmonella could cause such scars within the colo – colonoscopy would show this.

    – Stool culture shows eventual bacterial infection (chronic food poisoning?)
    – Cl-Diff test shows Cl-Diff toxin
    – Ova and parasites (O&P) test shows intestinal parasites.

  • nik

    i have a girlfriend shes 17 and she recently (about 3days) been having sharp pains under her left rib cage. the pain seems to settle when layin down in different positions, along with it mostly occur during evening/nights. lately she has been taking tyenol and using a heat pad on the area. It hurts more when applying pressure on the area. what could cause this?

  • Jan Modric

    Nik,

    can she describe this pain further? Is it constant or cramping pain? Does it extend over the entire left upper abdomen or is more precisely located – if so, where exactly – how many inches from the middle line? Does pain radiate into her left shoulder or arm or back? Does she have elevated body temperature, nausea, change in bowel habit?

    What happened 3 days ago – did she eat something different or in excess? Does she have any chronic problems of any kind?

  • nik

    Her description of pain was ” dull and slight cramping every once in a while”. the pain is similar to a light switch, just on and off. for example like today she told me after she had ran three miles and hung out in the sauna she has a slight sharp pain for a quick moment… then 30min after the pain came back but was present for a longer time so she took a nap. The pain is 4inch left of belly button and 1 inch on, it doesnt more anywhere, and its been at the same spot consistantly. it even hurt a bit worse when pressure is applied. she doesnt have elevated body temps, nor nausea, or bowel changes, no blood or vomit.

    i question about three days ago and she say thoses days were normal. eat consistantly, drink fluid no noticeable/ memorable change other than the sharp pain that has been occuring. as to my knowledge i know she cough a bit of a cold( running nose, stuffiness , slight conjestion) other than that no chronic history.

  • Jan Modric

    Sharp pain, located always on the same spot, aggravated by pressure and relieved by certain body positions can be from the strained or partially torn muscle in her abdominal wall – especially if she was exercising or made some quick or forced movement that day when pain appeared. In this case, pain would be obvious even after slight to moderate touch and would be relieved in positions with relaxed abd. muscles. Avoiding exercising for few weeks would probably result in healing.

    If pain worsens only when deeply pressuring on the spot, it may originate from the transverse part of the colon, especially if she is convinced it’s a “cramping” pain. A common cause of such pain is gas (from digestion of dietary fibers) trapped in the colon. Passing gas would (not always) be releiving. Trapped gas can resolve in a due time, but can recur. Avoiding carbonated drinks, legumes, fruits and anything what can cause excessive gas could help (Low-FODMAP diet).

    If nothing of this helps, she should see a doctor – ultrasound of abdomen could show something.

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  • nik

    thank you Jan Modric. I really appreciate your help and knowledge, and along with the quick responses. i will be back because i have a friend that has pain in his stomach region. But ill get more info on that.
    thank you again

    -nik

  • kaylee

    My 5 1/2 year old daughter has had abdominal discomfort steadily since July 09. She has had numerous viruses (including H1N1 3 weeks ago)& respiratory infections that have had her on lots of antibiotics since Jan. 09. She has had an annoying clearing throat cough for this entire year which is the same standing as laying down. A recent CT scan of her sinuses revealed 2 chronic sinusitis areas. She is on Augmentin for 21 days and has completed 9 days so far.
    A few days ago she had extreme burning with urinating for half of a day. Because it went away, we did not follow up. Yesterday & today she is complaing about her Left ‘hip’ hurting. When she points to the area she is referring to, it is between her bottom ribs and illiac crest on the left side of her body. Her stomach discomfort (center at diaphragm)has not gone away and neither has her dry throat cough. The doctors have done an immune work up as well as a growth work up (she is tiny in weight and height) and everything comes back seemingly normal. Should I wait until the antibiotic is through or is this something that we need to look into immediately? I am not sure what to do and who to see at this point, and could use some advice for a direction to pursue.

  • Jan Modric

    Kaylee,

    burning at urinating is suspicious for urinary infection. Dx is with urinary culture.

    Discomfort “in the center of diaphragm” may be from gastritis caused by flu or by drugs she is taking.

    Pain at the hip and the left side may be from inflammation of the descendent colon caused by Clostridium difficile bacteria overgrowth that sometimes occurs during prolonged antibiotic treatment. Dx is by “stool test for Cl-Diff toxin”. In any case, you can ask her doctor about Saccharomyces boulardii probiotic capsules, which prevent Cl-Diff overgrowth.

  • kalruth

    I have an intermittent pain in my LLQ. Sometimes it also develops into a dull ache in the middle of my lower abdomen like a period pain. I am 47 and in the menopause. I have irregular periods which are heavier than they used to be. My bowel patterns are irregular and I do get full of wind at times but the pain does not come when I have wind.

  • nicoliiee

    I’m a 16 year old female, and for almost three months now i’ve been dealing with chronic abdomal pain. I have pain in both my sides but mostly the left &rarely in the right, i get very dizzy when i’m hungry&under my ribs begin to hurt when im hungry also ..i have pain near my kindeys in the back &in my lower back on my left side. I have gotten checked for a urinary tract infection, gull bladder infection, kidney infection, kidney stones, and i have had an ultrasound on my stomach, i have to go see the gino because i get excrutiating pains in my stomach when i get my period& it lasts about 10 days. i dont know whats going on.. could you psosibly give me any answers? thankyou very much ..all is appreciated!

  • Jan Modric

    Kalruth,

    when did you feel the pain for the first time and from when do you have irregular bowel movements? What is your diet in general? Are the pain or irregular bowel movements related to meals, and is the pain stronger before or during your periofs?

  • Jan Modric

    Nicoliiee,

    visiting gyno is surely a must. Irregular periods may have something with your ovaries – this could be a possible cause of your pain on both sides of the (lower, is it?) abdomen.

    Any change in bowel habit? Is it pain worse after meals or near/during the period?

  • noflags

    My girlfriend is 18 years old and has periodic severe left abdominal pain that comes and goes what seems to be almost randomly, it comes in spurts and will also go away at random… what could cause this? and what can we do?

  • Jan Modric

    To noflags.

    Where exactly does she feel pain? When pain appears, how many minutes/hours does it last? Is it tender to touch? When she felt pain for the first time? Any change in bowel habit, burning urination, irregular period?

  • amm

    Hi,
    Below are the problems i would like to ask. Thank you in advance for sharing your medical expertise.
    1. I have frequent pain (like spasm) in my left stomach near the belly button. Sometimes the pain is in the middle part just above the belly button.
    2. Twice I experienced severe pain (middle part of the abdomen) after I ate boiled beef. The pain lasted around 2 hours. I never ate beef since then.
    3. Normally I eat 2 cups of rice, but now only 1 cup coz I feel full and bloated already.
    4. Everytime I eat I would feel slight pain, there would be a lot of air, I would need to burp or fart to release the air. Drinking hot water helps to relieve the pain and release the air.
    5. Few weeks before experiencing the frequent pain I saw blood in my stool. I ignored it because I thought this was maybe my stool was hard. Now I have not seen any blood on my stool.
    6. I have no constipation, no diarrhea, brown color stool. I urinate smoothly, normal color urine.
    7. I lost weight, maybe coz I choose the food I eat and scared of the pain after eating.
    8. Also notice there is always a rumbling sound on my tummy before and after I eat.
    9. Had CT Scan – ok, Xray –ok, Stool test – many bacteria, Urine – found a bit of blood, CBC – LDL cholesterol a bit high (see results).
    10. I was given the following medicines : Nov. 3 (domperidone motilium, famotidine 40mg, buscopan dhacopan,) Nov. 8 (tramadol 50mg, metoclopramide 10mg) Nov. 16 (prevacid fdt 30mg, disflatyl, zocor for the cholesterol, antibiotic 1 tablet only 1000mg)
    11. I have an asthma. I take (fenoterol berotec only when acute seldom use, seretide evohaler daily maintenance, flixonase nasal spray seldom use) . I’m allergic to seafoods.
    12. I have no fever, no nausea, no vomiting, no rashes, I don’t think my stomach is hard or soft, feels normal.
    13. I’m 37 yrs old. 5’ 9” 155 lbs. Had an appendectomy when I was 13.
    With this what do you think is wrong with me? I am scheduled to see a urologist in 2 weeks. Would gastroenterologist be better? thanks

  • Jan Modric

    To amm.

    I think both urologist and gastroenterologist would be ok. Blood in the urine is never normal.

    When did your symptoms start? Have you being traveling before symptoms started?

    How were “several bacteria in the stool” explained by the doctor? Have you already had a stool test for parasites? All symptoms you’ve mentioned can appear in intestinal parasites – not that I’m saying you have them. In certain parasites blood can appear in both blood and urine.
    Check medical history questionnaire to see, if you can recall any other symptom or circumstance.

  • amm

    Hi Jan,

    The pain started oct. 30, 2009. I’ve travelled to Philippines and singapore. They were never explained to me. I was just given 1 antibiotic with 1000mg. The stool tests show no ova or intestinal parasite seen. Yeast cells few. Bacteria many.
    The pain is around 2 inches to the left of my belly button. It is not severe, i can do anything. It does not radiate to other parts. Dont smoke, seldom drinks. We have diabetes and ulcer in the family. But from the CBC results, i have no diabetes.
    Jan many thanks for answering our questions. You dont know how greatful we are for your help. More power to you and i hope you continue helping others.

  • Jan Modric

    Amm,

    if symptoms won’t clear with your current drugs, I encourage you to repeat the test for intestinal parasites; these tests are often false negative. Also, can you recall any itchy skin rash anywhere on the foot, hands or anywhere on the skin; intestinal parasites sometimes enter through the skin during walking barefoot or swimming…

  • amm

    Hi Jan,

    I dont remember any rashes. I do swim and walk barefooted. I will go and have another stool tests. Thanks for the advice…regards.

  • JSTL

    My girlfriend began experiencing sharp pains in her lower left abdomen this morning at around 6am and it is now almost noon. She says the pain has also moved to her lower left back and that the skin is sensitive in a spot on her back.

    She also began her period yesterday. Normal stool, urine, and saliva.

    Any suggestions or advice would be much appreciated.

    Thank you.

  • Jan Modric

    JSTL,

    is her skin sensitive even after a light touch or only if she presses upon the spot? Does she feel back pain under or below the lower ribs on the side? If so, this speaks for a kidney disorder (ultrasound could maybe show this). Lower left abdominal pain could be from a small urinary stone lodged in her left ureter.

    If her back pain is around the left hip, she should visit gynecologist.

    Muscle strain (if she had some exercises the day before) is also possible.

  • JSTL

    I believe she said the skin was sensitive to touch. However, the back pain is gone. No to the pain under her ribs and no to it being around the left hip and muscle strain.

    She contracted fever last night approximately 4 hrs after my last post. Her temperature stayed between 99 and 100 degrees until just about 20 minutes ago it was 101. I have not taken it again since. In addition to the fever she has a headache and says she “feels heavy” in her stomach.

    I called a local clinic and was told that we could come in if we wanted to, but that a fever is usually not something to worry about until over 102 degrees.

  • nicoliiee

    Back again.. so i recently found out my problem was that i have a tipped uterus. &the questions about the meals&what not.. i get pains before meals &they go away after meals most of the time, i don’t have a very good diet.. like any other teenager.. lol but i know i’m not unhealthy and overweight, i am short but i weigh 110.. i am affraid that this uterus problem was caused by either Endometriosis, or Pelvic inflammatory disease.. im not sure how to present this to my doctor?

  • Jan Modric

    JSTL,

    several causes are possible from these symptoms:

    – kidney or ureteral stone(s) can cause pain over the kidney and sharp spasms (pain persisting for several minutes then disappearing and appearing again). Pain typically move as the stone moves.

    – gastrointestinal infection from bacterial food poisoning would probably cause loose stools and symptoms would go away in 2-3 days

    – urinary or gynecological infection are also possible.

    – if she already had such symptoms around her previous periods, had (or will have) abnormal period in any sense, it can be an ovarium-related condition.

    – Crohn’s disease – a chronic inflammation of the bowel (starting as acute inflammation) is another option;

    ………..
    If her symptoms will worsen even after the 3rd day, she should see a doctor, no matter what her temperature will be.

  • Jan Modric

    Nicolee,

    to help your gynecologist to find the cause, you can help a lot, if you check this medical history questionnaire and write down all your symptoms in a time line, what triggers the pain, what relieves it and so on.

  • carissa

    I started feeling cramping pain around my suprapubic area & radiates to my anus. It was painful for me to move. And then it would go away but I notice to have that loud bowel sound on my left lower abdominal ever since I had that pain. When i lay on my right side, my left lower abdominal side hurts. the pain is like someone pitching you. Its not consistent. Its there for like 20 seconds and then it goes away, and then it comes back. if i put pressure on it, it hurts. my urine is maybe amber in color, no odor. No pain upon urination.

    I was taking lasix once a week as part of my dietary plan. It was prescribe by the doctor to take every friday. I have been doing that for a year and just decided to stop maybe a month ago.. I hope Im not having any kidney problems. I am also taking dietary tea every night that makes me go every morning.

    I am also 2 weeks late with my menstrual period, however pregnancy test shows im negative.

    I want to go to the doctor but im frightened of what this could be.

    I hope you can help me figure this out. Thank you so much.

  • khwashaba

    I have andorminal pain and leftt back pain and sometimes itt gets to my left thy. can u pls help.

  • Jan Modric

    Carissa,

    late period seems to be the first thing to check, so I recommend you to visit your gynecologist.

  • Jan Modric

    To khwashaba.

    Is the pain there all the time or it comes and goes? Any change in urine color or bowel habit?

  • carissa

    I was guessing I have kidney stones because of all the signs that ive been seeing. ive been drinking alot of water right now and all night i havent felt the pain.

    What could it possibly be if im 2 weeks late? im usually irregular but for a year now i’ve had my period regularly. I usually get cramps on my heaviest day of mestrual period. And i’ve also noticed thick yellowish whitish discharges. no odor though. thanks

  • Jan Modric

    Carissa,

    you can check a medical history questionnaire to put all your symptoms in a time line, including your past diseases.

    From “suprapubic pain” and “late period” my first thought was there is something happening within your uterus or ovaries. Discharge is usually a sign of infection and it sounds like the main symptom from which a doctor can give you diagnosis.

    I strongly suggest you to visit your gynecologists as soon as possible. You will likely need to get treatment for an infection.

    From your left-side symptoms it’s possible you aditionaly have a rectal infection. In any case, write down your medical history and have an urgent visit to your doctor.

    Kidney (ureteral) stones cause a sharp cramping pain that lasts for some minutes and then goes away. I can’t exclude stones, but gynecologist sems to be your first choise now.

  • Carissa

    Hi! Right now I haven’t felt any pain but I do feel some sort of vibration in my rectum.. it vibrates every 10 seconds. Im scared what it could be. Tomorrow I have an appt with a gynecologist. Should I consider seeing a different doctor too?

  • Jan Modric

    Carrisa,

    as you know, vagina, uterus and rectum are anatomically closely related. Be sure to mention all symptoms you have/had:
    – irregular periods in the past
    – late period
    – discharge
    – suprapubic pain radiating to anus
    – loud sounds in the lower left abdomen
    – vibrating in the rectum

    Gynecologist will tell you if you also need to visit gastroenterologist.

  • Carissa

    hi.. i didn’t make it to my gynecologist today i will have to go on monday.. i’m so anxious and really scared at the same time.. with all the symptoms i’m experiencing, do u have any idea what it could be? its still vibrating for some reason. my breasts are getting sensitively tender, usually its one of the signs before i get my period.

  • Jan Modric

    Carrisa,

    vibrating may be from small muscular spasms in your rectum or in the muscles of the pelvic floor. It can be also from spasms in the vagina or uterus that are then felt in the rectum. I really can’t speculate what would be the cause, but if this appears only before your period, it can be hormonal related – like breast tenderness. Another posible cause is neurological: focal dystonia. It is discharge you have to solve first with gynecologist to prevent spread of infection and complications, and then you would maybe need some investigation regarding your irregular period. I believe gynecologist will know, if you need additional checking by gastroenterologist or not.

  • kim coffey

    Hello, going on 3 months now I have went to the my PCP (who said that he doesnt think nothing is serious but a urine culture and gave antibiotic for infection), to visiting the ER and having a exray and found that i was very constipated and still have bladder infection, then went to gastroenterologist who set me up for a colonoscopy in Jan. I just dont know if i could wait that long. I am a 40 year old female, married with two children 17 and 12. As mentioned, for the past 3 months I am experiencing severe bloating, lower left abdominal pain (sometimes a tingling feeling), constipation (taking prescription laxative) to just go to the bathroom and when I do its not full diarrhea but it is loose and thinner then usual, however, no blood in stool. I feel like my symtoms are getting worse and I cant wait until Jan for the procedure. I just want answers cause this is not normal and Dr’s are feeling “I am OK” when I know something is going on. Please let me know what I should do. Thank You!!!!

  • Jan Modric

    Kim coffey,

    when did constipation appear – 3 months ago?
    Did you have a stool test for bacteria or parasites? Did constipation and urinary infection stert at about the same time?
    Revealing more symptoms, eventual diseases you’ve had/have, medications you were taking…and putting them into a timeline would help a lot.
    medical history questionnaire

    To prevent bloatibg I suggest you to have a 4 day low-FODMAP diet trial and see if it helps.

  • kim coffey

    Jan,

    First, thank you for the quick reply. I have not had any testing of my stool. Do you think I should get that done prior to my colonoscopy on 01/07? I do think the constipation and UTI started about the same time. I am sure the antibiotics play a role in some of this but I do know something needs to be done. I have had heartburn for years and take Nexium. I was taking it as needed but around the time this all started I was taking it once a day because it was hurting really bad. I always get relief in about an hour or so but I did happen to look up the side effects of it and am experiencing a lot of whats going on today. But, I honestly dont think that is the problem I am having. still trying to explore my issues here. thank you for the diet it cant hurt to try it. With the additional information provided do you have any more suggestions?

  • Jan Modric

    Kim,

    – when exactly you started to have bowel problems?
    – Have you traveled or eaten any suspicious food or drink at that time?
    – When exactly did you have UTI and from which exact microbe?
    – When exactly did you start to take antibiotics and do you still take them?
    Besides Nexium and laxative (which exact type?) do you take any other drug or supplement?
    – What is your diet in general and did you change it lately?
    – Are your symptoms related to meals or to the time of the day?
    – Have you ever had any abdominal surgery?
    – Do you have any chronic disease?
    – Do you experience:
    — excessive burping
    — sulphur or barnyard smell of gas?
    — can you describe tingling you’ve mentioned – Is it maybe itching? Any rash? And where?
    – Does anyone other in your family have symptoms, like you?

    If you put answers on above qustions in an exact time line, it may help a lot.

    Low-FODMAP diet may help in revealing symptoms no matter what is the cause. Soluble fibers in oat bran or oatmeal can absorb excessive water in your colon thus helping in both constipation and diarrhea. So, limiting lactose, fructose and sorbitol, and gradually adding oatmeal, may help you.

    To have other investigations, you would need to have exact reasons, like:
    – Excessive gastric acid can be caused by chronic infection by H. pylori; Dx is with breath test for H. pylori
    – Your symptoms could be from intestinal parasites; Dx is by “stool test for ova and parasites”
    – Important: antibiotic treatment can derange your normal intestinal flora, allowing harmful bacteria, like Clostridium difficile to overgrow and cause symptoms, like yours (+ barnyard smell of the gas); Dx is by stool test for Cl-Diff toxin
    – Diverticulosis/diverticulitis would need X-ray with barium enema or colonoscopy

    First, as said, try to write down your exact medical history. Then try with a diet. And then , step by step.

  • carrienicole10

    hello i have a question. i have this pain/tender spot about 2 inches to the left of my belly button. it comes and goes. it is extremely tender, especially when my waistband is on it or if i lean on something that presses on it. it feels like(the tender spot) has gotten bigger over the past few months, but not too sure.there is not a lump or anything that i can feel. the only other difference i have had is missing my period, but this feels too high to be reproductive related. i am 26, 2 kids 1 and 3 both c sections, nonsmoker,moderate drinker. thank you so much for any input. thank you

  • duncan426

    I have had a pain in my lower left abdomen for about 1 month. Back in July, I went golfing and pulled a muscle on my left side of my back and it has never healed. I went to the chiropractor and massage therapist to get it worked on. The relieve lasted a day. My doctor said go to PT, so I did and the PT felt my left side and was shocked how tight it was. she said it is my psoas muscle. Then about a month ago the pain moved started happening at around my waistline on the left side. My stools are narrow and that prompt me to a GI doctor. He thought my hernia is causing this. I had an ultrasound and No hernia. I had a barium enema and nothing showed. I am lost on what it could be. thanks.

  • Jan Modric

    Duncan,

    pain arising from the psoas muscle worsens when you stand up from the sitting possition, during prolonged standing, or when you bend forward in the waist. It is relieved by sitting down. If this is the case, experienced PT should help you.

    Another or additional posibility is a pinched nerve in your thoracic spine, caused by bulging or herniated disc. CT or MRI are needed for diagnosis.

    Narrow stools are maybe from constipation, caused by pain. Maybe constipation itself is the cause of your abdominal pain. Adding more wholegrain cereals and green leafy vegetables with appropriate amount of water can relieve constipation.

  • AmySung

    Hello Jan,
    You are relentless in answering us helpless folks…well my husband had been experiencing pain in his lower left abdominal for over a year now. It comes and goes, and it extends to his back. The pain disappear on days that he is not stressed (which is hardly). The pain is mostly dull pain, but gets more intense if he needs to pee. He had been going thru tough times at work, and now is fighting a wrongful lawsuit. He is under a lot of stress. We had about a 2 week break from the lawsuit and during which he didn’t experience the pain. Otherwise the pain is pretty much always there. I am hoping to help him find out whether it is caner, kidney stone, or just simply an infection. His urine is normal, he doesn’t have constipation. He does have a history of stomach problem, but his doctor couldn’t find any bacteria problem after the breath test. He has frequent heavy nose bleeds that takes long time to stop. He has done GI and nothing showing up abnormal. His doctor is certain there is nothing wrong and won’t let him undergo any special test. Could you point us to the right direction? Where shall we look? Thanks.

  • Jan Modric

    AmySung,

    how old is he? You have mentioned some symptoms and tests, can you recall more, using this medical history questionnaire?

    Colorectal cancer is rare before 50, a cancer of size causing pain as you’ve described would be probably seen on lower GI. Kidney stones cause sharp cramping pain comming in random episodes lasting for several minutes then completely going away.

    Bladder lies in front of rectum and sigmoid colon. When these are full of gas or stool or when their wall is tense from stress, a full bladder would aggravate the pain.

    If the pain is so obviously related to stress, the solution is in coping with stress or avoiding unnecessary stress.

    One good approach when “fighting”: Fight for what’s right, do not fight for yourself. Also do not fight against what’s wrong. This gives freedom and power. If there is no realistic chance to win, even when you’re right, there’s no point to fight further. But fight until you feel it’s right.

    If your husband has the feeling there is an organic problem, he can discuss with a gastroenterologist about colonoscopy or CT/MRI of the pelvis.

  • obonyo_2000@yahoo.com

    I play a lot of soccer. Recently, I started feeling pain on my lower abdomen and the pain gets worse the more a run. Pressing on my lower abdomen does not feel pain but if I lie on my back and try lifting my legs in the air, it feels very painful. Nothing on my urine. Bowel movement is normal. X-rays showed nothing. The longer I stay without playing soccer, the lass painful it gets. I have been out now for about one month and pain is slightly there on the left lower abdomen. Any advice/suggestions will be highly appreciated. Thank you.

  • Jan Modric

    To obonyo_2000@yahoo.com

    Stretched muscle? A physiotherapist or sport doctor could tell more.

  • kal776

    Hello Jan,

    About two months ago I had food poising and immediately became violently ill 30 min after eating. The other people in our group experienced diarrhea, however, I only experienced severe pain, chills, and nausea (I held back on vomiting). About a week after, I began experiencing severe abdominal pain on my left side, which until now has not gone away (going on a 1 ½ months). Two weeks after the side abdominal pain began, I woke up with extreme upper back and neck stiffness (the pain you get when you exercise intensely), plus daily headaches (left side), extreme fatigue and dizziness. I went to the doctor to get it checked out and the initially wrote it off as muscular pain. The following day I went to a different doctor who listened to my concerns and decided to run some blood work and a CT scan of the abdomen and head. The CT scans showed nothing abnormal and the blood work was normal, except for a high white blood count (WBC). At that stage they concluded it was at UT infection and prescribed meds, however the pain did not go away. They re-checked the WBC and this time it came back within normal range. They ordered additional lab work to see if it might be a parasite of some type, however, that also came back normal. They then did an ultrasound of my lower abdomen and found a 2.2 cm cyst in my left ovary. The doctors indicated that the cyst might be causing the side pain, however, the intense cramps and dull pain I’d been experiencing is still present. I now feel the pain radiating to my back (mid back) and tingling sensation on my left arm (close to my heart). I also just started getting swelling and throbbing pain on my left foot (all the way up to my thigh). I asked the doctor about this and he seems to think that it’s not related and that I shouldn’t be concerned.
    Overall the pain is not as bad as it initially was, however, I just can’t think of what else might be causing the pain. The headaches have gone away. I get constipation from time to time. The only other thing that comes to mind is maybe a possible blood clot (leg area) as I travel (avg 8-10 hr flights) a lot and I never get up to stretch or walk. Is there anything else that you can suggest I look for?
    Thank you in advance.
    Kal

  • Jan Modric

    Kal,

    it’s possible that the germ that has caused food poisoning has entered your blood (elevated WBC speaks for that) and from there brain or brain membranes (meninges) – so what you’ve gone through could be meningitis or encephalitis.

    Tingling in your left arm could be from the same (brain?) infection. If you have enlarged lymh nodes in the groin (?), this could be the reason for leg swelling. It is parasitic infection – filariasis – that can cause this. Blood clot (venous thrombosis) could be also the cause, this can be checked by ultrasound investigation of your leg veins.

    So, one possible cause that could connect all your symptoms would be certain intestinal parasite that has later entered the blood, brain and lymph nodes.

    Your doctor should check lymph nodes in your groin on the left and leg veins.

  • Amber

    Hello Jan,

    I’m hoping maybe you can let me know if I need to go to the doctor about this, you sound very knowledgeable.

    A few days ago I had an extremely intense pain in my far lower left abdomen, it was a familiar pain that has previously been attributed by doctors to eggs traveling through the fallopian tube. This started about a year to a year and a half ago, at which time they conducted a vaginal ultrasound and found nothing else wrong.

    What made this time different is that the following morning when I woke, the area above that, still on the left side was incredibly sore. Much like the side cramping that happens when you exercise shortly after eating. It feels like it is my spleen, as it is very similar to the pain I had 4 years ago when I had mono.

    It was December 26th when I had the ovary pain, December 27th when I woke with the other pain. Last night (December 29th) I went for a walk to the grocery store, probably 30 blocks worth of walking altogether, and had no immediate reaction. However, this morning it was a little more sore when I woke.

    I am 20 years old, and while about 50lbs overweight, I am well-distributed and my waistline is 34 inches. I have had a bit of nausea for the past two weeks, but it has mostly subsided since the ovarian pain. I also had some instances of diarrhea and constipation, but I cannot tell if this is attributed to accidental gluten-intake as I have been eating gluten-free for about 3-4 months, and have found it very helpful in treating digestive issues that the doctors had previously attributed to IBS.

    I am in a bad position of insurance limbo. My father’s work is making everyone switch insurance on the 1st. So while I could go be seen by a doctor now, I would have to see a different doctor in a couple of days.

    The area is not tender to the touch, nor does it seem to get worse when I touch other areas of the abdomen. It hurts when I twist to my right side, such as when cleaning after bathroom use. The pain was very subtle the last two days, but it quite noticable today. It is a dull, lingering pain.

    Okay, that’s everything I can think of. Please tell me what you think.

    Thank you,
    Amber

  • Jan Modric

    Amber,

    pain related with “eggs traveling” would appear only between ovulation and menstruation.

    To me, it sounds like both lower and upper side pain arise from your colon. Upper left side pain can be caused by gas trapped between the transverse and descendent part of the colon. It is quite common in people with IBS and is called “splenic flexure syndrome” (splenic flexure being a part of the colon where it bends down). Bloating, alternating diarrhea and constipation and pain when you bend over or twist your body are typical.

    It seems that the solution is in avoiding certain foods that may yield gas. You can try one or more of the following:
    1. Limit foods rich in soluble fiber (legumes, oats, apples…) and add some food rich in insoluble fiber (spinach, parsnips, cornmeal…)
    http://www.healthhype.com/list-of-high-fiber-foods-soluble-and-insoluble-fiber-chart.html
    2. Try low-FODMAP diet, where you limit foods rich in fructose, HFCS, sorbitol (certain fruits) and fructans (in wheat and onions)
    http://www.healthhype.com/fodmap-diet-foods-to-avoid-in-ibs-bowel-disorders-with-bloating-and-gas.html

    You might want to re-check your gluten copntaining foods list:
    http://www.healthhype.com/what-is-celiac-disease-sprue-symptoms-test-foods-to-avoid.html

    Crohn’s disease usually goes with general malaise and more constant symptoms.
    Colorectal cancer rarely appears before 50 and it rarely causes symptoms you’ve described.
    Pelvic or abdominal adhesions may appear after C-section or abdominal surgery.

  • Miindi0

    I have read most of the messages above, and none seem to fit my pain. It feels like a big pinch on my lower left side and then it goes away, only to come back, it goes, comes back, since yesterday, 12/31/09. I am going to the bathroom regularly but I am releasing a lot of gas. I have taken Tums and Prevacid but the pain remains. Please help me to know what is causing this. Thanks.

  • cutiewithabooboo

    I am 17 years old and for the past 3 years I have been experiencing severe stomach pain. At first, it would only occur after I ate large meals. Then slowly it began to occur after mostly everything i ate. Most of the time I become very bloated after meals, and often my left side of my abdomen hurts the worst with sharp stabbing pains. I also have heartburn, GERD (Gastro Esophagus Reflux Disease), and my stools sometimes have mucus in them. I have been to the emergency room and the doctors as well as a gastroeneterologist many times. I have had an ultrasound, an upper GI test, blood tests, cat scans, and x-rays, but my results were found to be normal. However, I did find that my amylase count in my blood test was a little higher than normal, but my mom told me it could be from the medicines that I am currently taking. This has been greatly affecting me in my everyday life and with my sports. I really just want to know what is wrong with me, any ideas? Thanks for all the help. =/

  • Jan Modric

    Mindi0,

    have you eaten certain foods or drinks in excess (fruits, drinks with HFCS or sorbitol)?

  • Jan Modric

    To cutiewithabooboo.

    To interpret amylase level, you should ask a gastroenterologist.

    I recommend:
    1. Test for Helycobacter pylori bacteria that often causes chronic inflammation of the stomach and GERD.
    2. Seriously considering a “low-FODMAP” diet, where you limit foods containing fructose (fruits), lactose (dairy) and some others.
    http://www.healthhype.com/fodmap-diet-foods-to-avoid-in-ibs-bowel-disorders-with-bloating-and-gas.html
    3. Limiting foods high in “soluble fiber”, like legumes, oats and some others.
    http://www.healthhype.com/list-of-high-fiber-foods-soluble-and-insoluble-fiber-chart.html
    http://www.healthhype.com/list-of-high-fiber-foods-soluble-and-insoluble-fiber-chart.html

  • cutiewithabooboo

    Dear Jan,

    Thank you for all your help. I’m definitely going to try a low-FODMAP diet. My gastroenterologist did not tell me about that, however he did have me go on a high fiber diet, and take miralax everyday, but I did not find this to help much at all. It actually made it worse so I stopped. I also got the test for Helycobacter pylori bacteria but my gastroenterolgist did not say i was positive for that.

  • Jan Modric

    Cutiewithabooboo,

    low-FODMAP diet is actually composed of at least two diets: low-fructose diet and lactose free diet, so if you want you can try one of these first. Stick with one for 4 days too see if it helps, then try another one for 4 days. Also read about fructose malabsorption and lactose intolerance – you’ll find links in articles, I’ve mentioned. If neither of diets will help, then try complete low-FODMAP diet.

    Mucus in the stool and all other you’ve mentioned may be symtoms of IBS. It means certain food(s) irritate your bowel. So try to find out which specific foods irritate you. Mucus also appears in intestinal parasites.

  • Shiroro

    Hie.. Im suffering from lower left abdominal pains.. when i dont touch its fine.. when i press its also fine.. but when i let go.. it hurts. I dont know why this is happening.. for the pass one week i have been having stomach aches,neusia (Sorry donno how to spell)
    and headaches..

    Please help me T^T

    -Shiroro

    • Jan Modric

      Shiroro,

      are you male or female, how old are you? Any diarrhea, mucus or blood in the stool, bloating (abdominal distension), excesive gas? Any fever? Where do you live?

  • Tizz

    Hi,
    I have been having pain in my Left side a few inches under my Breast area in my Stomach/Abdemon area. I have had this pain for a few months now but today it is really bothering me. I don’t have any medical insurance so I haven’t seen a Dr.
    I just don’t know what could be causing this pain and I am worried it could be an Anurism or something. My dad had an Anurism of the Aorta so im really worried. Any ideas??? Please help

    • Jan Modric

      Tizz,

      how old are you? is the painful spot tender to touch? Any bloating? Is pain relieved after passing gas or bowel movement?

  • Tizz

    Hi,
    I am a 42 yr old Female and the pain at times is a stabbing sharp pain and at other times, it is just a reg type of pain. I can press on my stomach as hard as I can and I feel the pain, I have had some Gas today but this pain has been with me for months.
    The pain radiates from above my belly button a few inch’s and then to the left towards my breast and then under my breast area. Im really worried about this pain.

    • Jan Modric

      Tizz, if you’re worried about aneurysm or other disorder you can ask a gastroenterologist to have abdominal ultrasound. You can also read about pain under left rib cage to see, if you can find anything related.

  • masha

    Please doctor, read this.
    My mome suffers form low left -to middlie low abdominal pain.Pain last 6-10 hours at the time!!! Tried pain killers, mussels relaxers, different positions, warm water NOTHIGS helps. Her colonoscapy is exelent (she goes to the bathroom with no problem!)Hernia was remove 2 times 4 years ago. Doctor found infection in her bloder (she took antibiotict for 3 month) it did not help pain come back.Anyway he said it normally would not cause such a pain. We do not know what to do. Ct scan did not show anything wrons as well as ultrasound. Please help. She is give in up and do not want to live anymore.

    • Jan Modric

      Masha,

      I encourage you to help your mother to fulfil this medical history questionnaire. It is important she writes down all issues exactly and in the order as suggested there. After that, discussion would be much easier. One often overlookd cause of pain after surgery are abdominal adhesions. Urinary infection should be treated thoroughly.

  • That guy 101

    im a 19 year old male, and ive been having pain in my lower left abdomen, just under the rib cage for about a year. when i sleep on my left side i can feel something sticking out and its very uncomfortable. i can feel a bump (in a 6 pack under the middle left one) its right under the muscle and feels abnormal. ive chewed tobacco for 4 years so im not sure if it could be stomach cancer or what it is. its starting to freak me out though. i also sometimes feel pain under my left armpit as well, and it feels like a bump is there as well. any suggestions as to what it might be?

    • Jan Modric

      To That guy 101.

      I strongly suggest you to visit a gastroenterologist, who can carefully examine you. The lump under the armpit sounds like enlyrged lymph node(s) – I can’t say from what reason, but in any case this is something you *have to* check soon. The sticking thing in the abdomen could be, among other, enlarged spleen. In this case, the lump in the armpit is likely related.

  • ErinJenn

    I am a 20 year old female. The past couple of days I’ve been having really sharp pains in the left side of my stomach that come and go as they please. It feels much better when I bend over and wait it out. They usually last up to a few minutes. Any idea what it could be?

    Thanks in advance!

  • Jan Modric

    ErinJenn,

    are the pains above or below the waist line? How many inches from the middle line? Between the pain episodes, is the painful spot tender to touch or do you feel any lump there? Any change in urine color? Diarrhea?

    Ovulation, intestinal hernia, urinary stones, ovarian cyst or torsion are some of the possible causes of sharp lower abdominal pain.

    Trapped gas in the colon is a common cause of sharp transient upper left abd. pain.

  • ErinJenn

    Thanks for the quick response! The pains are more near the middle, close to my ribs. It’d says its about 2 inches away from my belly button all the way to my side. It is verrry tender to touch it the pains are there and slightly tender when the pains are absent. There is no lump there. My urine is clear because I am very well hydrated from being an athelete. There is no diarrhea and my bowel movements are the same as they have always been because I have a high fiber diet. I have 2 more weeks until I get my period, so it’s not menstrual cramps. I told my mom I’d wait until Monday to schedule an appointment if it’s not better by then.

  • Jan Modric

    ErinJenn,

    would you say the area beneath your ribs is more bloated when you have the pains?

    Did you eat more fiber or something different as usual “a couple of days” ago?

  • ErinJenn

    It’s not bloated at all. I haven’t eaten anything I normally don’t eat. I just have no clue what it is!

  • Jan Modric

    ErinJenn,

    I was thinking it could be a trapped gas in the left part of your transverse colon (so just below your left rib cage). This can cause spasm in the colon.

    Another cause could be intestinal hernia or something other occuring in your bowel.

    Except of cramps in abdominal wall muscles, I don’t know what else could cause pains that would be relieved by bending over. Maybe it could be urinary stone in your left ureter (ultrasound can show it).

    Try to avoid carbonated drinks, legumes and other food that release a lot of gas.

  • MeganB

    Hey everyone. I am a 25 year old female and over the past month or so I have had pain in my lower left abdomen that comes and goes. It gets worse after I eat, especially salads or anything fresh, and may or may not be relieved after a bowel movement (which is usually fairly quickly after eating fresh vegetables). A few days ago I’ve noticed that my left side seems slightly bigger than the right…not much, but enough for me to notice. Stools seem normal..although maybe diarrhea more frequently?

    Any advice/insight will be greatly appreciated!

    • Jan Modric

      MeganB,

      it’s likely your left side is bloated from gas accumulation in your left colon. I recommend you a low-fructose diaet trial for 4 days; if you have fructose malabsorption, your symptoms should go away in this time. Here’s a detailed list of foods to try and to avoid. If this doesn’t help, try a bit more strict low-FODMAP diet for 4 days again.

      Urge to have a bowel movement shortly after a meal may be a symptom of IBS, meaning certain foods or types of groups irritate your colon. One commonly non-recognized disorder mimicking IBS is fructose malabsorption.

  • jayblack

    Hi I am a 32 year old male who woke up this morning at my regular time, had a protein shake for breakfast and felt a little tired so went back to sleep. I woke again at 1:30pm to a pain in my stomach along with the feeling of nausea and slight chills. I felt like I was going to throw up and the sight of any food would make it worse. I eventually gagged then forced myself to vomit as I figured it was something bad in the protein shake and it would make sense to get rid of it.

    Shortly after that I started to feel worse. Fever, constant chills but NO vomiting or diarreha. The pain would get worse every few minutes then it would subside but I would still be left with general discomfort. At times the pain would be sharp and quite uncomfortable.

    The pain was originally in my lower abdomen (felt very tight below my navel) and has now moved primarily to my upper abdomen. It does feel somewhat tender to touch. I took a Tylenol for the fever which has subsided but the pain is still there.

    The pain comes and goes as I move around and switch positions. I am sitting at the computer with my back bent, knees up and I ALMOST feel fine. If I stretch out my legs the pain will come back. Still a mild fever at this point and it has been about 5 hours.

    If have not eaten anything and only drank a small glass of water since the feelings came. I have had one bowel movement which was large and seemed fine (no blood, not dark etc). Haven’t been able to have one since.

    My wife had the same protein shake and she is NOT sick.

    Any ideas or advice?

  • jayblack

    just a quick update. I just ate a bowl of chicken noodle soup and 2 glasses of water and my stomach feels like its going to explode. My wife says I look pregnant! It is VERY bloated and hurts to stand up straight.

    Fever is very minor but like I said before I did take some Tylenol about 1.5 hours ago.

    • Jan Modric

      To jayblack.

      Sounds, like a food poisoning (possibly from some food you’ve eaten the day before). If it doesn’t resolve in 3-4 days, I recommend you to visit your primary doctor and ask for appropriate (stool) tests.

  • ludlow

    Hi I’m 17 years old and im having pains on the left side of my stomach, both top and bottom. Its been like this for at least a week if not more. It gets worse when I eat and when I do wanna eat I feel like I wanna blow chunks. does anyone know what this is?

    • Jan Modric

      Ludlow,

      which part of the world are you from? Would you say you are bloated (have distended abdomen), have excessive gas or loose stools? Have you travelled somewhere in last months or eaten something unusual?

  • stelli1971

    i too have the pain on the left side,but its fine when im sitting or sleeping.it hurts when i move or bend.i was fine until i did a little stretching.if its a strained muscle how long does it take to get better? i can eat fine breathe fine and everything else is fine.

    • Jan Modric

      Stelli1971,

      is your pain just below the rib cage? A stretched muscle would be tender to touch, and you would be able to localize the painful spot exactly. Such a pain could go away in several days / few weeks. The other common cause of pain below the left rib cage triggered by moving is gas trapped in the colon (splenic flexure syndrome).

  • Hayley

    I arrived here while searching for information regarding stomach swelling and soreness. I have noticed for a few months now, tenderness to the touch on the right side of my upper abdomen {just right of centre}, immediately below my rib cage, it feels bruised.
    Just the past few weeks I have been experiencing swelling of this area {all the way across}, and it is quite a noticeable amount larger than the area below my belly button. I wondered if it could be related to gall bladder or symptoms due to long term medications such as anti inflammatories and other meds?

    • Jan Modric

      Hayley,

      any change in bowel habit, excesive gas, burping, change in appetite? if your upper abdomen is obviously distended, and if tapping the area gives a drum-like sound, than it’s probably gas in your transverse colon. There are several causes of bloating, like lactose intolerance and fructose malabsorption, parasites…If tapping the area gives a dull sound, it could be enlarged liver. Long term antiinflammatory drugs could do some harm to the liver, but this would need some examination. If you think, it’s not gas, visit a doctor. If it seems to be gas, follow links from the bloating article and try some elimination diet (lactose-free, low-fructose…)

  • ludlow

    I havent gone anywhere since the beginning of november. I live in CA and it only starts really hurting after I eat. I sorta have gas. sometimes it feels like bubbles are exploding on my side.

    • Jan Modric

      Ludlow,

      if this doesn’t resolve in few days, I recommend you to visit your doctor, tell him exact symptoms and when did they start. Ask for a stool test for bacteria and parasites. I believe pain and bubbling arise from gas in your left part of the colon.

  • ludlow

    Jan,

    ok thanks. Also starting this morning my back has been hurting… I feel extremely stiff and it hurts to move. Is that something else?

    • Jan Modric

      Ludlow,

      lower or upper, right or left side of the back? Is it like a mirror image from abdominal symptoms?

  • stelli1971

    it goes from under my rib cage to my pelvic bone i believe its what u call it.its not a constant pain.but its ongoing.

    • Jan Modric

      Stelli,

      would you say your left side is bloated (distended)? If you tap that area with fingers, do you get a drum like sound? Is the pain aggravated after a meal and relieved by bowel movement and do you have excessive gas? It is a descendent part of the colon that runs down the left side of the abdomen, and trapped gas can cause pains while bending or moving.

  • teknikalsgirl

    Hi I am a 32 yr old female and have had stomach and intestinal problems all my life. In the last 4 years I have started to have a pain in my middle left side and almost always always before a bowel movement (not with every one though, happens occasionally) I added more fiber to my diet and that seemed to help a bit but also I get very nauseous and sweaty and have passed out many times before I can even finish the BM or before I have made it to the bathroom. This has happened almost all of my life (as long as I can remember) and I have had test after test but no one has any real answers for me. It scares me now because I have no idea what to look at anymore or where to go from here as so many things have been ruled out. I also changed my diet again in the last 6 months because I was told I have hypoglycemia and need to eat “foods closer to nature.” The episodes did get better but I still have them and get very sick, to the point where I would swear I was dying…any ideas? Thank you

    • Jan Modric

      To teknikalsgirl.

      Can you reveal your complete medical history?

      What exactly are your (all) current symptoms? Which diagnoses were ruled out and which confirmed? Are you taking any medication and what is its effect? Do you have any underlying chronic disease?

  • snow

    last friday,i suddenly felt a bad pain on my lower left stomach,near my hip bone..the pain come every ten seconds..and every time,i felt like it going to explode..i dont know whats wrong..i have experience this kind of pain about 7 years ago but i never ask a doctor about it..i never thought that it would come back again..im worried that i have some kidney problem..after about 1 hour,the pains gone..but today,i still feel a little bit of pain when i bent down or become active..and lately,i have been eating a lot of food that come with salty flavour..i wonder if it have something to do with my pain…

  • snow

    btw,im a female and 18..and i never really have any serious health problems..

    • Jan Modric

      To snow.

      Have you noticed any blood in the urine, or burning at urination? Kidney stone in your left ureter are possible – ultrasound can reveal them. Crampy pain appears in hollow tubular organs, so, theoretically, pain could also arise from the Fallopian tubes or colon.

  • cdurden

    Jan,

    I am a 42y/o male. For the past 3 or 4 months I have experienced a pain that begins in my left testical then radiates up into my lower/upper left abdominal area. My colonoscopy was unremarkable. I then had a CT of my belly & pelvis with contrast. It was also unremarkle. An inguinal hernia was ruled out. The pain starts with lifting whether at work (Firefighter) or at home doing yard work. The pain can last all day and I get little to no relief with OTC pain relievers. A good nights rest and the pain is gone the next morning. Could I have a pinched nerve? Thx.

    • Jan Modric

      To cdurden.

      It does not sound as a pinched nerve to me…but I would recommend you visiting a neurologist.

  • teknikalsgirl

    My doctor never told me exactly what she was testing for. The tests started at 13 I had and endoscopy, sigmoidoscopy, countless stool tests, barium tests, x-rays, bllod tests and ultrasounds. I have no blockages, polyps, or “odd loking tissue” as I was told. My doctors and I strongly feel I suffer from endometriosis but I have not had tissue tested for an acurate diagnosis. I suffer from ovarian cysts, depression, OCD, ADHD, and tourettes syndrome. All of these I have had since birth or since puberty. I take prozac daily for OCD and tylenol often for migraines. The prozac has only been for about 2 and a half years but have tried a few other depression medications in the past (over 12 years ago. As a child when these symptoms occured my mother and I were told it was stress due to post tramatic stress disorder and was told to take Maalox or Mylanta before eating. That did not help in any way, and I no longer do it. Most recently I had another barium x-ray and was told that it was probably gas or fecal matter getting trapped but that does not explain the fainting,and I never have a problem “going” Sometimes I have already had a bowel movement. I should add the sweating and fainting episodes almost never happen during the day it is 98% of the time during the nighht and I am awoken from sleep already feeling ill.
    Thank you again

    • Jan Modric

      Teknikalsgirl,

      are sweeting episodes at night related to abdominal pain?

  • Fin

    I have some funny heat sensation on the left side of my rib. Sometimes, it moves to my lower left side and then my left bum. I feel some heat in the left side of my head and some pain in my back(left side). Chest tightens a bit and pain like moving heat all over my left body. It sometimes affect my left eye too.

    • Jan Modric

      Fin,

      I suggest you to visit a neurologist *promptly*. Your symptoms may arise from a brain disorder.

  • jsaunders

    Hi, I have been having pain below the left rib for almost 10 mths.The pain can be so bad it hurts to breath,have needed to crawl very slowly if I need to move anywhere and lying down can sometimes ease the pain depending how severe. Had a barium 3mths ago which showed a slight problem with the reflux.Yet doctors report says everything is normal.Was given Lanzoprasol and the pain has improved but it still comes and goes. All the symptoms that I should get with acid, I dont get any of these? It was requested by the consultant who performed my barium, that I still needed an endoscopy, but my GP’s say I dont fit the criteria? I really dont know what is wrong with me?
    Please help!

    • Jan Modric

      Jsaunders,

      is the painful area tender to touch? Bloated? Is pain related to meals or bowel movements?

      One possible cause is trapped gas in the transverse part of your colon (splenic flexure syndrome).

  • TM

    Let me first say, I have no health insurance and I’m currently in Europe with a paralyzing fear (that leads to severe panic attacks and triggers my asthma) of the medical community.

    For the past 4 days I’ve been experiencing dull to sharp pains in my lower left abdominal area. The pain isn’t unbearable, but still uncomfortable. It comes sporadically at no particular time and last a few seconds and then is gone. I’m a 34 year old female, with extremely regular periods you could set a watch to. My last GYN exam was about 3 years ago (yes, I’m aware I should be getting regular exams, but no health insurance and the paralyzing fear aforementioned prevents me from doing so). Everything was completely fine in the last exam. My bowel movements are often times few and sometimes far between, but other times, quite regular depending on my stress levels. My diet is normal and healthy. I avoid fatty foods, save for the occasional pizza, but other than that, I stick to strictly fresh veggies and grilled meats. I also avoid carbs whenever possible, although I do not shy away from rice in the hopes it will help my digestive track reach some sort of normalcy. There is no history of cancer in my family, however my mother’s side of the family have several stomach problems (IBS, colitis, ulcers, etc.) and my father has Chrone’s disease. In general, I’m in very good health (I kind of have to be with no insurance). I’ve also noticed a very minimal pain that feels to be shooting up and down the back of my leg. This also started the same time as the abdominal pains. I don’t have a fever as far as I can tell and have no other symptoms other than the pains in my lower left abdomen. I am constantly under high levels of stress.

    I want to avoid going to a Doctor for reasons previously stated, and adding to the fact the language barrier. I just need to know if this sounds like something serious enough to warrant a $10,000 visit or if it sounds like something harmless. I realize as a doctor yourself, you will most likely advise me to seek help from a doctor, however I wouldn’t even know if this case would warrant a GYN or an emergency room (my two options). If it sounds like something serious, I’d just like to know what tests to ask for so I’m not spending money on unnecessary testing.

    • Jan Modric

      To TM.

      Is the painful spot tender to touch? Have your bowel habits changed since the pain appearance? Important: do abdominal and back-thigh pain appear at the same time, or at least – did they both appear before 4 days? Checking this medical history form could remind you to more symptoms or relevant circumstances.

      I currently do not work as a doctor.

      Urinary stones in your left ureter and sciatic pain are my first two thoughts, but would need to hear more.

  • TM

    Thanks for your reply.
    No, it is not tender to touch. Bowel movements have decreased since it started. And yes, the pains seem to coincide, although the leg seems to be a bit more constant. Checking the form you linked me to, nothing else seems present. It’s not paralyzing pain, in fact I did my aerobic work out yesterday and there hasn’t been any increased pain. The leg pain is barely noticeable compared to the occasional cramping pains I feel in my abdomen, however, it is present.

    I have had a small lump on my neck (also left side) for a few years that increases and decreases in size based on my levels of stress or depression. I’ve been told it’s most likely a nerve or muscle. In my line of work, I’m forced to carry very heavy objects (over the last 13 years) and I generally put most of the weight on my left side. I’ve spoken to massage therapists about this as well as the back and shoulder pain I suffer from (I’ve never actually had a professional massage as I’m terrified of the pain). They attribute the lump to this or a simple build up. I also have a small hard lump on my left wrist, which also increases and decreases in size due to the amount of lifting I do or stress levels.

    I’m not sure if this is related, but though I’d mention it.

    • Jan Modric

      TM,

      from additional symptoms you’ve mentioned I can think about:
      – lump in the neck and in the wrist may be a subcutaneus nodule, commonly occuring in rheumatoid arthritis or related disease. Maybe these lumps are related to physical strain.
      – carrying heavy objects for a long time can result in bulging disc(s) in your lumbar spine, causing sciatic pain – in your thigh. Another bulging disc, or a bone spur from spinal arthritis in your lower thoracic spine could cause pain in your lower left abdomen. Both of these pains would be likely (at least sometimes) related to body movements; even by slight change in sitting position or so.
      – constipation could worsen from these random pains. Constipation itself can cause abdominal (not thigh) pain. Whole-grain bread and other foods contaimning some dietary fiber can help a LOT in prevention of constipation.

      Pain from urinary stones in the left ureter can last for (at least several) seconds, and it is a crampy pain; you feel how it grabs you and then goes away completely. Sciatic pain is not a crampy pain and could last for few seconds only.

      Regular walking or swimming and avoiding prolonged sitting, standing or sleeping on a soft matress can help in relieving sciatic pain. You can visit a reliable physiotherapist, maybe massage or some exercises can help you.

  • TM

    Thank you. What should I do to check if it’s urinary stones, or is there something I can do on my own, assuming that it is, to help with that?

  • Jan Modric

    TM,

    urinary stones can often be suspected from certain substances in the urine, so you might want to have an urine test first. The next step is ultrasound of the abdomen and kidneys.

    In Europe, depending in which country you are, there are several possibilities to being tested. Many “diagnostic centers” and private doctors are available. You can search online, typing in certain cities…Not sure if you can do much on your own, if they are stones. Drinking the water regularly, without exaggeration, though. You can do something about constipation.

  • teknikalsgirl

    Jan,
    Not always. Sometimes I am sweating and dizzy (also upset stomach and general body weakness) with no pain but do still end up 99% of the time having a BM though not uncomfortable or painful.

  • teknikalsgirl

    I guess I should have added that occasionally I get pains so bad I am doubled over on the floor and can barely sit to go to the bathroom. Although this is not usually what happens.

    • Jan Modric

      Teknikalsgirl,

      fainting/sweating non-related to abdominal pains, meals, or bowel movements raises suspiction for hypoglycemia or other metabolic/hormonal disorder, so you should check your blood glucose levels again and maybe have other blood tests as suggested by an *endocrionologist*.

      Pains and passing out before bowel movements could be from partial bowel obstruction caused by abdominal adhesions, possibly related to ovarian cysts or eventual endometriosis. CT, MRI or laparoscopy are needed for diagnosis. Adhesions cannot be seen from the inner side of the bowel (colonoscopy, barium inv. etc.) Speak about this with your gynecologist or/and gastroenterologist.

  • teknikalsgirl

    I will do that.
    Thank You

  • jsaunders

    Forgot to mention I had a scan 3mths ago and nothing showed up.I dont have regular bowel movements but eat plenty of fibre and a healthy diet.Never suffered with constipation.The pain feels similar to trapped wind and a severe stitch combined.I can get dizzy and start to sweat when it gets very bad.

  • jsaunders

    I was prescribed folic acid after a blood test to do with finding out the cause of my stomach pain,but don’t understand what folic acid has to do with my stomach pain? I dont have regular bowel movements but never suffer from constipation.Eat a healthy diet.

    • Jan Modric

      Jsaunders,

      I guess you eat a lot of high-fiber foods. Foods containing soluble fiber may produce quite some gas. Even if you think you do not have excessive gas, you may want to experiment with soluble/insoluble fiber. The other possible cause is fructose malabsorption. Unabsorbed fructose is broken down by normal colonic bacteria that yield gas. If you have this, 2-3 days of low-fructose diet should help you.

      I guess you’ve got folic acid because you had lowered level of folate in the blood. Folate is necessary for normal funcion of nerves, also those that innervate the bowel.

  • marlee

    a note to teknikalsgirl… i went through 2.5 years of what your describing. severe abdominal pain, sweating and fainting spells while having BM’s. i went through tons of testing, however once i was taken off Prozac, all my symptoms stopped.

  • marlee

    9 days ago i started having severe pain in my left lower abdomen with pain going through to the left lower back. the pain is sharp and feels like childbirth and i have to breathe through it. i went to ER twice last week and had 2 GYN visits. at the first ER visit i had a ct scan and bloodwork. everything came back normal, no kidney stones, no ovarian cysts (which i’m prone to), no diverticulitis, no infection indicated in bloodwork, but had some blood in urine sample. was put on cipro and told to follow up with dr. went to ER again 2 days later since pain meds weren’t working. had a normal pelvic exam, was mini-cathed which showed no blood in urine. ER dr said possibly PID and taken off cipro and put on doxycicline (spelling?) saw my GYN dr the following day. he said my uterus and left ovary were extremely tender during examination and to continue with doxy med and f/u 2 days later. last friday saw GYN again and he sent me for ultrasound, which was also normal. pain went away for 24 hours over the weekend and came back late sunday night and all day yesterday was in severe pain. GYN dr is scheduling me for a laproscopy tomorrow to see if he can find anything. is this the right option? BM patterns did change last week. ever since my gallbladder surgery 16 years ago i’ve always had loose stools after eating. last week i was constipated and the dr and i felt it was due to the narcotics for pain and the zofran for nausea that i was taking. went 5 days with no BM, then it was very hard, painful and had some bleeding (which when its happened before was due to hemorroids). i’ve been back to being regular all weekend, but am still having pain, so don’t know the pain was related to constipation since pain started before and still having pain. i’m 35, have had numerous abdominal surgeries including 3 c-sections, tubal ligation, gallbladder surgery, ablation, 4 d&c’s.

  • joanna s

    I am a 22 year old female and been having chest pains for about 3 months now. The pain is on my left side and shoots down my left arm and back. When i went to my doctor, he took many tests but all seem to come out just fine. He then suggested that i go for physical therapy 4 times a week but being a full time college student it was very hard for me. The pains hurt most when i lay down or sit still so because of this i lack sleep. I cant sit through class without putting pressure on my arm to relieve some of the pain. This actually bruised me very bad and i lost some weight too. Can you please help me. Anything will help at this point. Thank you

    • Jan Modric

      Joanna s,

      have you had a CT or MRI of your chest? Does your chest pain lessen sit and lean forward a bit? Is the pain aggravated by a deep breathing or coughing? This occurs in pericarditis. An MRI or ECG could reveal it.

      Another possibility is a disorder in your neck/chest spine, resulting in pinched nerves that innervate your left side of the trunk and left arm. A CT or MRI of the spine would reveal this.

  • SLA

    I am a 28 year old woman and starting having discomfort in my upper left abdomen, sometimes is worse after I eat. But it will come and go. I was recently taking an anti-inflammatory for hip pain, I have no other health issues. Any insight? Thanks

    • Jan Modric

      To SLA.

      Is the pain close to the midline? Is it a burning pain? In this case it could be a gastritis possibly caused by an antiinflammatory drug. If your upper abdomen is swollen (bloated), it is could be from trapped gas in your transverse colon – from certain foods.

  • SLA

    It’s not really burning, it is closer to the mid than side. Sometimes I’m not sure if I’m hungry or nauseous. Not bloated.

  • B2446

    About 7 months ago i was diagnosed with ruptured cysts in my ovaries. I was rushed to surgery and had them removed. the last couple of days i have been getting extremly sharp stabbing pains in the lower left part of my abdomen as well as it feeling very bloated, having sickness and dirahoea, being off my food and feeling tired all the time. I’m 17 could they have come back?

    • Jan Modric

      To B2446.

      Is it possible you ate something wrong about 3 days agoo? If it is bacterial food poisoning, symptoms should go away within about a week. If symptoms won’t start to lessen in a couple of days, you should see a doctor and mention the possibility of abdominal adhesions (threads of scar tissue) that sometimes develop after a surgery.

  • Shelly

    One day ago I woke in the morning with a red splotchy rash all over my chest. It went away after a shower but I thought it was odd. While in the shower, I began feeling light headed and “woozy”. My stomach began to hurt like a typical stomach ache. I had diarhea several times that day and generally did not feel good. I felt like I was going to throw up most of the day, but stayed at work. (I am not pregnant).

    Upon coming home yesterday, I went straight to bed. During the night I woke up with severe, sharp pains in what I would describe as below my rib cage/lungs – not specific to one side. I was also shivering and shaking, feeling very cold. My fiancee wrapped me in 4 blankets and I was still shivering. I finally fell asleep and awoke sweating and covered in sweat – soaked! The pain below my ribs was so bad I had to get up. I could not stand fully and had to walk at a 90 degree angle, bent over in pain. My legs and lower back were hurting also – an achy feeling. The pain seemed to diminish a bit if I did NOT lay down, but rather sat up. As soon as I layed back down, the severe pain (which made it hard to breath) would come back again.

    I finally was able to go back to sleep at 6am and did not wake up again. This morning I feel a dull ache in the same places but it is not as severe. My mother says I should have gone to the hospital last night. I have not had diarhea since yesterday. I’m not eating much because I have no appetite. I wondered about food poisoning but my fiancee ate the same foods as me and he is fine.

    I’m a 32 year old female with only migraine related health issues, not much else. I have just weaned myself off Atenolol, a migraine prevention medicine. I did have H1N1 about 2.5 months ago.

    Should I be concered about appendicitis? That seems like it would be lower in my abdomen. Please help me!

    Shelly

    • Jan Modric

      Shelly,

      if the rash was like a hives, it sounds like an allergy. I strongly recommend you to make an exact list of all foods, drinks, and eventual medications, you have that day and a day before the first symptoms appeared and visit an allergologist. An allergic reaction can occur within a minute or up to 72 hours after ingesting of an allergen.

      It could be also a food poisoning.

  • KoolDude

    I have been experiencing extreme episodic lower left stomach pain just moments after a meal for the past 10 – 15 years. The episodes seem to occur once a year or two years. It starts with mild pain and urgence to run to the washroom and then it developes into very extreme pain that I start to sweat like I ran on marathon. After bowel movement and sometimes vomitting the pain subsides. The whole thing lasts in 30 to 45 minutes. I have had CT colonography which turn out to be negative. I eat healthy food with a lot fiber. I can not predict when it occurs and I don’t seem to relate it to any particular food as many different episodes followed different types of food. Please help

    • Jan Modric

      KoolDude,

      do these episodes occur at above the same time in the year? I mean, do you eat certain foods at that time but not at other times of the year? And when it appears does it occur only once or more times? Do you take any medications?

  • mark

    I am 38 yr. old male with DDD, L5-S1, really bad shape. I have had achjng, dull, to take your breath pain in my lower left abdominal region, 5 inches down, 2 inches left of navel. Cam feel lump, egg-sized, but real sensitive to touch. Yhis comes and goes depending on how constipated I become.

    I was perfect as far BM’s, before I started all the pain meds from the crippling back issues,started slow(constipation), but now on high doses of Oxycodone, as well as anxiety meds.

    Here’s the problem if I take my Miralax, like I am supposed to, no serious problems, but when I take it I pass my pain meds in my stool, not shells, or skins, the whole pill, can read imprints sometimes, so I almost die from pain. So, if I take Myralax, no constipation, but cant walk, if I dont problems pain in abdomen, and constipation!

    I just had colonoscopy, blood work, chest X-Ray, all fine. It is like I am not digesting food, and passing quickly to down below, but once it gets there, it does not want to go any further. I am so confused, I have to have my pain meds, but then I am miserable from the abdominal pain, and constipation.

    Any thoughts on how to slow down upper, while speeding up lower? Because of my health coverage, or lack of, the Fentanyl patch, I believe is not covered, but dont want to switch anyway, when I can digest the Oxycontin, I get some relief, so I dont want to screw with my meds, but cant take the other side of the coin. Please help!

    • Jan Modric

      Mark,

      Oxycodone can cause severe constipation, and I’m not sure if you can override this with usual measures, like daily exercising (walking), high-fiber food, drinking enough water and coping with stress.

      Has your doctor suggested you physiotherapy for the back? What exact disorder you have – bulging or herniated disc?

  • KoolDude

    Jan,

    Not really, it does not happen at the same time and I don’t eat any particular food. It does happen once and I don’t get again until some months have elapsed. It is really mystery. I do have alot of bowel gas and suffer from GERD but this is not related to the extreme lower abdominal pain that followed by tarry bowel movement. I do also notice some fatty material in my stomach. I don’t think it is IBS and I don’t have any functional bowel desease. Could this be the small intestine desease ? I do notice that my colon gets destended after an attack.

    • Jan Modric

      KoolDude,

      during these episodes, is the bowel movement black and tarry? Any red blood? What is “fatty material in your stomach”? Some abdominal lump you can see or palpate? Where exactly does “colon distension” appear – in the lower left abdomen?

      I guess, CT colonography would show eventual diverticles. What’s your usual diet, I mean, have you considered that “a lot of bowel gas” could be related to foods like beans or peas, or fruits, or soda or sweets…

  • KoolDude

    Jan,

    There is no red blood that I can see. IT is just normal Diarrhea sometimes accompanied by vomit. After that I feel relieved until another episode happens. Colon distension happens the lower left abdomen.

    I don’t feel any abdominal lump but I guess there is no way I feel it unless an x-ray or CT reveals it.

    My food contains high fiber ( with fruits and whole wheat stuff), fish, chicken, and rice or pasta sometimes. I don’t eat beans as it causes me alot of GAS and I don’t drin sodas but I do eat fruit.

    This desease is complete mystery to me. I don’t know what can cause it. I did alot of research but none has been helpfull.

    Could CT colonography reveal any intestinal obstruction that can happen in episodes? I don’t know.

    • Jan Modric

      Kooldude,

      colonography would show any mass within the colon, big enough to be able to cause a colonic obstruction. Not sure how much of extra-colonic tissue was seen in your case. During laparoscopy (endoscopy of abdominal cavity) tissues around the colon can be clearly seen. Abdominal adhesions (strands of scar tissue) or certain slowly growing masses pressing upon the colon could be found. MRI of the abdomen could also show unusual masses, not sure how clearly adhesions would be seen, though. Volvulus (twisting ofthe colon around its axis), intususception (one part of the colon protruding into the next part), or colonic hernia, or strangulated diverticle can be all temporary and completely resolve, but during laparoscopy, a gastroenterologist could judge if these disorders are likley.

      I suggest you to make an exact “reconstruction” of one of these events, carefully describe all symptoms and put them in a proper time order. Then you can discuss with a gastroenterologist about abovementioned disorders and laparoscopy.

  • mark

    I cant recall if bulging or herniated just desication of disc material, and loss of disc space or height? I started PT, but when the episodes with abdomen occur, no way, can’t do anything. I can still get around(somewhat), walk with cane, have to go up and stairs a few times a day, because bedroom is upstairs, no choice, forced to move in with father, because of our great Social Security program, whole different story. But if I can take my medicine, and it actually digests, I can do simple things, that I need to, but then the pain comes, and constipation, so I have to take care of that, just a vicious cycle. Are there digestive supplements, or something, or a recommendation to resolve both issues, like I said with the Myralax everyday, no problems with constipation, or pain from what I like to call my poop bump, because you can actually see it and feel it, when its there. Thank you for taking time to answer, and I wont stop, until I get to the bottom of it, I have a 6 yr. old who misses his daddy, I used to be so into sports and the outdoors, now cabin fever! Thanks again!

    • Jan Modric

      Mark,

      I suggest you to seriously think about surgery. This is generally a safe and effective treatment for DDD, I personally know several people of different ages who have had it. I don’t think you can reallisticly solve your problem with staying on codeine long-term. Until then, you can experiment by taking both pills at different separate times.

  • mark

    Thanks for the advice, I’ll see what I can do, surgery scares the hell out of me, if the stimulator trial doesn’t work, and I cant resolve this matter, then I guess I have no choice, but it will be my last choice, I’ve had 2 yrs. of research on back, specifically low back surgeries, and they aren’t as encouraging to me. Maybe if I had real insurance, instead of medicaid(which I am grateful for), but they are not too keen to giving you the latest and greatest availibility to latest technology! Thanks once again!

  • KoolDude

    Jan,

    Thanks, but don’t you think laparoscopy is it risky. I though MRI can would have been more approriate. Given the symptoms, I have described what do you think can cause episodic extreme abdominal pain that usually follows eating and is relieved by Diarrhea occassionally accompanied by vomitting. The pain is extreme that I can’t talk and sweat like I ran marathon.

    • Jan Modric

      KoolDude,

      laparoscopy can show adhesions, twisted organs, loose tissue..a doctor can move organs and judge, if they are properly fixed…MRI cannot show all this.

      Possible causes, saying from the head:
      – volvulus, intususception or abdominal adhesion – laparoscopy would be needed to judge about this
      – a mass, like a fibroma, pressing upon the colon from outside from time to time
      – strangulated diverticle – the doctor should say, if diverticles can be reliably excluded from colonography result or not
      – hernia
      – **Hirschsprung’s disease** (search online for Hirschsprung’s disease in adults) – would require a biopsy performed during colonoscopy. In this disorder, a short section of the colon does not contain nerves, so it cannot move actively…

      All above disorders could cause a partial obstruction of the colon. When you eat, a gastro-colic reflex triggers peristalsis in the colon – this is what normally occurs, often after a breakfast, before you have a bowel movement. A partial and temporary bowel obstruction can cause diarrhea, intense lower abdominal pain, resolving in a short time and vomiting. I DO NOT claim, it’s this, but it’s posible.

      Even a simple constipation (?) in a combination with slightly distended or irresponsive colon could cause obstruction by – stool.

  • marlee

    hi jan, i just wanted to update on my lower abdominal pain. i went in for a diagnostic laproscopy last week after having severe pain for 2 weeks with all normal tests. immediately my dr found that my left fallopian tube had been shifted out of place and was adhesed that way, also it was filled with an endometrioma (?) and the bowel was adhesed to the tube. none of which showed in the ct scan or ultrasound. he drained the tube, cut the adhesions and everything went back to place. i ended up with 4 small incisions and was feeling fine within a couple days. i am just so thankful that my dr wanted to check out through surgery what was happening. thanks for your reassurance.
    marlee

  • Hayley

    I ended up seeing my GP after several “episodes” of passing out over the last couple of weeks with no obvious reason, but it feels related to the abdominal symptoms. My blood pressure was a little high 130/100 and the pain when the GP pressed on the centre of my abdomen {high, directly below breast bone, centre of abdomen} was excrutiating. He organised an ultrasound which I had today. He told me that he expected liver or gallbladder involvement.
    The radiographer was saying “it extends higher than the neck” and “that will be it. That is the CVD” I have no idea what any of it means but I hope I just have a gallstone!!
    Thanks for the advice so far, hopefully I will have some answers tomorrow as to the cause of my ongoing symptoms!

    • Jan Modric

      Hayley,

      CVD = probably Cardio Vascular Disease. Heart disease does not likely cause tenderness in the upper abdomen, also not gallstones though. The tender spot, as you’ve described it lies over the stomach or colon.

      If you burp excessively (?) it culd be chronic gastritis caused by Helycobacter pylori bacteria. Diagnosis is with a blood or breath test or by uper endoscopy.

  • Jan Modric

    Marlee,

    I this is a useful comment about what can be found during laparoscopy, and was not found by MRI or US.

    Endometrioma is a mass of tissue caused by endometriosis.

  • KoolDude

    Jan,

    Thanks very much for your effort in finding possible causes of my ailment. I would seek further medical advice but as usual doctors will take the easy way and pre-diagnose my symtoms to belong to IBS.

    I am afraid my condition is Chronic Partial Intestinal Obstruction which occurs at random in loger intervals. One question, since adhesions is caused by operations, would it not be possible for laparoscopy to cause more of these?

    By the way, My age is 39 and I have been suffering from this since I was 18 on and off.

    Thanks

    • Jan Modric

      KoolDude,

      yes, adhesions are mostly caused by surgery. If you have never had abdominal surgery or any severe abdominal inflammation or infection, adehesions are not likely. But it is possible you have some anatomical abnormality, like your left lower part of the colon is not attached firmly to surrounding tissues, allowing the colon to move excessively or twist (volvulus) and causing partial obstruction. The problem is, if this happens and resolves, nothing abnormally can be seen on MRI. But during laparoscopy a doctor would be able to touch and move the colon from the outside and judge how it is attached. It is true that after laparoscopy adhesions can be created – but this depends a lot on how carefully a doctor performs it.

      Don’t forget that Hirschsprung’s disease is also possible – this would require biopsy during colonoscopy, as mentioned.

      IBS – I can’t exclude it. Your colon could be irritated by a certain additive in certain (probably commercial) foods. I know someone mentioned some “red dye”, causing bad abdominal cramps, not sure what exactly was it, I’ll search a bit.

      For now, I really encourage you again to describe a typical event in utter details – in what time after the meal it happens and so on.

  • audwas

    Hi there-
    I have not read all of the other people’s queries yet- but this is a severe problem for me- and has been for more than a year- and it seems unusual- but someone must know about this- I can’t be the only one-
    I think I have IBS.
    But this is something wierd- and I really need help withthis- I WILL START TO HAVE THIS WIERD FEELING HIGH UP ON IN MY LEFT THIGH, NEAR THE CROTCH.
    (I am female, mid-forties). With the wierd leg feeling- IT FEELS LIKE IMPENDING DOOM- LIKE SOMETHING BAD IS GOING TO HAPPEN- AND I feel like I’m going to emotionally have a melt-down- and sure enough- I will start crying,(Big time crying) etc. until somehow (through whatever means- drinking tons of water, fibre and senekot, or in utter desperation – Fleet- which is so severe that I think a person loses too much fluid with that product? (Is it bad to induce a severe blow-out like that???Doesn’t seem right-
    SO DO YOU KNOW WHY THE WIERD FEELING IN THE LEFT LEG ONLY?
    WHY THE CRYING (AND I MEAN SERIOUS CRYING) WHEN THERE IS NO PAIN??
    AND THE FEELING OF FEAR AND IMPENDING DOOM? The crying will pass- sometimes before I can go,sometimes hours before I have to go, or sometimes after I go..
    Do you have any answers for me?
    So far- 2 Drs. do not.
    I’d be so grateful for someone to have HEARD of these symptoms-
    And also what to do about it.

    ALSO -JUST AS IMPORTANTLY THE WHO BRAIN-IN-THE GUT concept. Re- depression. There is serotonin in the gut and brain. Can a person be depressed, from the serotonin in the gut??? The chicken and the egg- which came first….? What’s your opinion?

    Appreciate any kind of wisdom.
    a
    And what to do about this.

  • audwas

    Oh- I forgot to mention- I’m in my forties and female-

    • Jan Modric

      To audwas

      Depression can cause constipation. Inappropriate diet can affect mood. There are foods that can affect serotonin levels in the body, but I find a direct cause – effect diet trials more efective and reliable. Some food aggravates your depression? Drop that food. This is a brain-gut axis concept.

      Is your left leg swollen? Any breathing problems, you could not relate to anxiety? If there is a history of vein thrombosis in your family, you should consider to have a blood test for it. Vigorous bowel flushing methods can affect mineral balance in your body, contributing to weird feelings. If you can describe your leg feeling as tingling or numbness, it could be from a pinched sciatic nerve arising from your lumbar or sacral part of the spine.

  • ChicagoGal

    Hello, for the past week my 40 year old husband has been experiencing severe pain that is localized to his lower left back, but below the typical kidney level. Heat and 600 mg ibuprofen do not alleviate the pain at all and he hasn’t done anything to pull a muscle, but he has no fever either. He says it doesn’t feel like muscle pain, and rest doesn’t make it better. Unfortunately we are without health insurance for the fist time in our lives so we can’t afford care unless it is for something that is extremely serious. Thank you for your insight.

    • Jan Modric

      ChicagoGal,

      is his lower back tender to touch? Is the pain constant and how would he deccribe it – as a dull, sharp, deep, strong..? Is it a crampy pain – comes and lasts for some time and disappears completely? Does exercise aggravates the pain? When did the pain appear? Any history of spinal disorders (pinched nerve, arthritis..) in his family?

  • ChicagoGal

    Thank you, Jan. His back is not tender to the touch and the contant, fairly sharp pain is not exacerbated by movement or exercise. He’s had it for about a week and it is very localized to the left. There is no family history of spinal problems but there is arthritis.

    • Jan Modric

      ChicagoGirl,

      a pinched nerve in his thoracic spine (due to arthritis?) is my first thought. Diagnosis is by CT/MRI of the spine. Any additional symptom, even slight, like burning urination, change in bowel habit…also what happened a week ago – did he lift something heavy…would help a lot in finding the cause.

  • ChicagoGal

    Thank you. He says he just woke up one day with the pain and cannot remember any abnormal exertion. I quizzed him about other symptoms and he says he’s had intermittent slight nausea (without urinary issues or altered bowel habits)and he’s also been coughing a bit – a deep cough that doesn’t sound at all like a cold or flu.

    • Jan Modric

      ChicagoGal,

      if he is sure the cough and nausea has came together with the back pain, then he actually may have a flu. In both seasonal and swine (H1N1) flu, fever is not mandatory, but body aches are almost always present, also a dry cough. If he knows his usual body temperature, even a slight raise of body temperature would speak either for an infection or inflammation. If it is flu, these symptoms may last for few weeks. If symptoms become worse, I recommend a sputum (mucus) culture test, performed by an infectologist.

  • ChicagoGal

    I didn’t know that about H1N1. Thank you very much!

  • audwas

    Thank you for your advice.
    Ooops- I am now receiving emails in response to EVERYONE’S questions- how do I stop this???

    a

  • Jan Modric

    audwas,

    I believe there is an “unsubscribe” link in messages you are getting.

  • David K

    I am a 58 yo male. Been having lower left side abdominal discomfort (not much pain)above and slightly to the right of left hip bone for a few months (it comes and goes). My GP said it’s usually backed up stool, and fiber and ultimatley bowel movements would fix the problem. It seemed to do the trick. Until recently (the last week or so). I now feel it daily. Not bad in the AM, but gets worse as the day goes on. I was checked recently and there was no blood in the stool. I have no fever, but seem to get bloated after eating. I have recently gone about 80% vegan ( the other 20% just very healthy). I have cut out, much to my chagrin, all empty carbs, and treat sugar like poison.I have an endoscopy scheduled for Wednesday (2/17) and a colonoscopy on March 8. Just wondering if you have any insights, or anything I should mention to the dr.since I am quite nervous. Thank you.

    • Jan Modric

      David K,

      I recommend you to try a low-FODMAP diet for 4 days. It may be fructose (from fruits) or sorbitol from diet soda or other low-calorie foods that irritate you.

  • Ashley S

    I’ve been having abdominal pain in my left side for about 8 months now. It started lower, like it may be in my ovaries but then it started traveling further up, around the lower left side of my navel. I’ve noticed that it gets worse when I drink soda or anything with Caffine. I rarely drink water and was wondering if maybe that could be it? I have bowel movements MAYBE once a day but they seem pretty normal. No bleeding, no mucus, no fever. But this pain feels like a stabbing and at times where it’s hurting is a little harder than the rest of my stomach. I’m 24 years old and 5′ 10 about 195lbs.

  • Meera

    Hi,

    I am 32yrs old woman and have a 3 yrs old kid.I’m getting pain when i press my left lower abdomen. it happens only whenver i start doing exercise.. and even am constipated and getting white discharge … once i stop doing exercise am feeling perfectly fine….. could you please answer me.. am worried 🙁

    • Jan Modric

      Meera,

      For how long does your pain last? Are you talking about vaginal discharge or mucus in the bowel movements? White vaginal discharge could be from gynecological infection. In this case I strongly recommend you to visit your gynecologist, since untreated infections can cause permanent complications, including infertility. After treating this, you will see, if pain still persists.

  • Ashley S

    Jan, this morning it got worse. I have nausea, a little light-headed and vomitted just a little. It feels like there is a pressure on the left dude. I’m thinking about going to the doctor.

    • Jan Modric

      Ashley,

      here is a personal medical histoty questionnaire. I encourage you to write all your symptoms down in a time line and how are related to meals, in what order, is vomiting related to pain or to meals, how symptoms change during the day…exact answers can greatly help your doctor to give you correct diagnosis.

  • Meera

    Thank you Jan i’ll visit the Dr. soon.

  • David K

    Thanks, Jan, for the reply. I checked out low-fodmap diet, and it’s similar to what I am doing now. Haven’t had diet soda (or any soda) in over 3 years (mostly because of my tinnitus).

    Anyway,I seem to have good BMs for a couple of days, then almost nothing for a couple of days. What concerned me a couple of days ago was that I had pencil stools (I had taken turkey rhubarb the night before), but subsequent BMs have been kinda mushy in a pile. Could my new BMs be due to my new vegan based die? Obvioulsy, I am eating quite a bit of vegies which may explain the mushy pile, but then why do I go to no BMs for a day or two at a time? When you combine my bowel habits with my pain in the lower left abs, I was wondering-could it be IBS? Or maybe something more sinister, like cancer? Any ideas? Is it possible for the pain to go away on it’s own?I am seeing my gastro tomorrow for and endoscopy, but I start crying thinking it might be the big “c” and I wanted to get your take. Thanks again. You are doing Gods work, helping all of these people.

    • Jan Modric

      David,

      pencil stools are usually a symptom of obstruction in the rectum. Colon cancer and enlarged prostate are two of many possible reasons, considering your age. It could be also “only” IBS. I really do not want to guess where does pain come from, but constipation or bloating itself can cause pain that comes and goes.

      Your bowel needs some time to adjust to newly introduced vegetarian diet. Lot of veggies contains lot of fiber. Normal colonic bacteria break soluble fiber down and produce gas. Insoluble fiber should not cause gas. You can experiment with foods high in soluble and insoluble fiber. Legumes usually result in quite some gas. If you have fructose malabsorption (can cause IBS-like symptoms), you can check foods to try and to avoid. For some people large amounts of wheat are problematic. I want to say, not all foods from your veggie diet are necessary OK just because they are veggies. After colonoscopy, you can experiment with removing certain foods for 2-3 days and see the effect.

  • Nuno

    I’m 31 years old. 6 months ago I got the news that I might have had AIDS. 6 months after, I tested NEG, so this is clear. I had to wait 3 months to do my first test, and during this 3 months I was very anxious and I got some pain in the testiculs and the lower abdomen part. I didn’t know if it was from having AIDS or because of nerves.
    Anyway, now I know I don’t have AIDS but I have yellow fezes from sometime, maybe since 6 months ago, Im not really sure.
    The pain in the lower abdomen disappeard 3 months ago (probably after my first test) but now I have this itchy sensation all over my left body part. usually it’s in my back, but sometimes under my left foot, inside part of left leg is also sensible. It seems sometimes electric shocks during some secs. This dissapears if I change position or lay down. I work in front of a PC most of the time so my work position is not very good.
    I was told that it may be an irritable colon. I was also told to do acunpuncture in the stomac, intestine or liver meridien. Any thoughts? Thanks Nuno

    • Jan Modric

      Nuno,

      Symptoms in your left part of the body and leg could be from bulging disc(s) in your spine – this can be seen on CT or MRI of the spine.

      Are your stools actually yellow or pale (whitish, colorless)? Are they loose or solid and is their appearance the same all the time? Any other symptoms, like abdominal bloating. There are several causes of yellow stools and irritable colon (IBS) is one of them. You can try a low-FODMAP diet for some days to see if it helps. If not you might want to have some stool tests for parasites or other tests, like colonoscopy, if necessary.

  • Nuno

    No they are not pale, just a bit more yellow than a normal brown stool. The appearance is always the same. They are solid.
    The acunpuncture points that I see in the internet are more sensible on the left side than on the right side. Near my left bicep it’s a bit sensible, as under my armpit or wrist or hand. if I massage them for a bit the back pain seems to go away for a while.
    Do you think acunpuncture might do some good?
    Thanks again

  • Nuno

    I have no more symptoms. I’ve done an ecography and it was everything ok, but this “burning” “electric” “nerve” sensation is really annoying.
    Thanks very much

    • Jan Modric

      Nuno,

      electric nerve sensations are probably from your spine – an MRI or CT of te spine is needed for a diagnosis. If, apart from yellow stool, you have no other symptoms, like fever and you don’t feel ill, then a stress related stimulation of your peristalsis is possible. My approach to deal with stress in not by acupuncture, though.

  • reina

    I am 21 years old and for the past three days have been experiencing sporadic pain on the left side of my abdomen, about three to four inches left of my belly button. It comes about three times a day and lasts for only a couple of seconds. The pain is gradual, starts minimally but gets stronger then diminishes again. There was once however where the pain lasted longer and it almost felt like light slower pulses of pain. Bowel movements and diet have been regular and area does not hurt when touched.

    • Jan Modric

      To reina.

      Sounds like urinary stones in your left ureter. Urine tests and ultrasound of the abdomen can reveal this.

  • DavidK

    Hi Jan
    Had the endoscopy yesterday and they found ulcers on my small intestine (at least I think he said the small intestine, I was kinda groggy). The Dr. sent biopsies out to determine if it was h pylori, and will know in 10 days to 2 weeks. From doing research for a friend a few years ago, i came across a prouct called Bye-Lori which has mastic that attacks the h pylori, and is supposed to have wonderful results (unless that’s internet propaganda). Do you see any downside to starting the Bye Lori right away, since (from what I can see) there are no side effects, and I get a two week headstart even before the dr. knows what it is. I called the drs. office and got the nurse who had never heard of the product,(no surprise there) and she said wait ’til we the results. Frankly, I would rather stay away from antibiotics, if possible. If you were in my position what would you do? Again, thanks for your time.

    • Jan Modric

      David,

      The product you’ve mentioned contains mastic, which is bactericidal for H. pylori (according to pubmed.org). In some (not all) patients taking mastic, H. pylori was eradicated. Not sure, if it is a coincidence, but in one group receiving both mastic and antibiotics, no one was treated, and most were treted with antibiotics only.

      The problem is you don’t know, if you have H. pylori, and if you have it, eventual belching can diminish, but ulcers (probably in the duodenum) are not likely to heal in two weeks, so I don’t know, if you will be able to tell if mastic had any effect or not and you can skip antibiotics or not. When you have H. pylori, you have to eradicate it. I personally would go with antibiotics. Mastic can cause bloating…Avoiding anything acidic (vit C, aspirin, ibuprofen, citrus fruits, mineral water..) can help. It’s quite possible there is something else in your lower left abdomen (colon).

  • specialpk81

    Left hand side pain stomach abs area gets worse at night… hot and cold sweats fatigue and drained. Docs said the found some type of calicum deposit and asked me to take more test? Concerned…….

    • Jan Modric

      To specialpk81.

      Where have they found calcium deposits? What exactly is wrong with your stomach? What doctors think it is at this moment and what tests have they recommended?

  • Tiana

    Hello, I’m a 21year old female. Yesterday Night I went out to dinner with my family and I had one drink. I got home around 1am this morning and my pelvis was hurting which is normal I’m about to start my menstrual cycle on the 26. At 4am I woke up to a sharp pain on my lower left side under my ribs above the hip (which is not normal). I tried to remove my bowels there was no blood. I don’t use the bathroom daily (I’m not sure if that can be the problem). I couldn’t sleep I thought that my menstrual cycle was starting earlier so I took my Pills for my cramps (Naproxen 550MG). I couldn’t lie down without the pain getting worse. Within 10-15 minutes of taking the medication the pain started to go away. I woke up around 11am this morning and I seemed to be fine but now the pain is coming back and then going away (its keeps doing that). The pain feels like someone is stabbing me. Sometimes it feels like I have to urinate. (I’ve had a UTI before and this doesn’t feel the same). I’m not sure if I should see a DR. and what kind of DR. should I see. Thank you in advance.

    • Jan Modric

      Tiana,

      cramping (?), stabbing pain triggeing urge to urinate may be from a urinary stone in your left ureter. If pain will not resolve in few days or if it get wors, I recommend you to have urine test and ultrasound of the abdomen.

  • alex

    I’m 28 year old male, slim, no prior serious medical problems.

    The symptoms below have been observed for 1.5 years with no significant changes from the very beginning. I suspect they could have a common cause. The list is below starting from the most irritating:

    1. Pain in left lower abdomen. Pain is almost constant, not strong, but very unpleasant. Especially it bothers when I’m trying to fall asleep. There is no pain in the first minutes after waking up in the morning (I couldn’t fall asleep during the day a single time since the symptoms appeared), also the pain goes away for 10-20 minutes after long intense exercising. Alcohol (1 can of beer) helps to get rid of the pain completely for 1-2 hours. Antibiotics reduce the pain significantly but only while I’m taking them. The pain returns 2-3 after stopping taking antibiotics. The pain is pretty well localized by deep palpation – 10 cm to the left and 5 cm down from the belly button. Pain area is 5 cm in diameter. This is also the spot where I can palpate my psoas minor muscle as tight thin cord. After palpating I have unpleasant sensation similar to a hit in the abdomen for some time. No similar sensations when I palpate in the same place on the right side. The pain increases when gas/excrements move along the colon. When the pain intensifies I can also feel it in the area of the left kidney (under the ribcage on the left side). Stool is normal. Urination is normal (including frequency). Turns, leaning doesn’t change the pain intensity.

    2. I noted that some thoughts (to be more precise the rapid change of the topic I’m thinking about – e.g. recollection an upcoming event, changing the focus of attention to another object) cause strange unpleasant sensation in the heart area – as if I’m lacking oxygen, weak dull pain covering large area (it’s difficult to describe, but that’s as good as I can do). It starts off and passes away quickly. This sort of pain is periodic – one week I may have it, the other I will not.

    3. Itching (burning sensation) in the right heel. Usually it happens before falling asleep. Feels like week electric current passing, tingling.

    I’ve gone through numerous diagnostics and visited several specialists:
    1. Colonoscopy showed ideal state of the colon (large bowel)
    2. Ultrasound shows increased left kidney base (25 mm).
    3. Intravenous pyelogram doesn’t reveal any anomalies. Ureters are not visible on the images
    4. CT with contrasting also revealed the increased size of the left kidney base. No other anomalies discovered.
    5. No veneral deseases found

    Additional info: Nutrition is well balanced. For 2 months tried vegetarian diet with no changes in the symptoms noticed. The type and quantity of the food doesn’t have significant impact on the symptoms.

    I will appreciate any suggestions on what could be the reason of the above symptoms and further diagnostics.

    • Jan Modric

      Alex,

      about 1 and 3.: A partial obstruction of the right ureter (urinary stone, fibrosis, fungus balls, pressure from inflamed/fibrosed psoas minor tendon…) could explain LLQ pain and tenderness, kidney pain and enlargement (from the pressure of the urine). A contrast X-ray (maybe retrograde ureterography – a nephrologist/urologist should tell) of the left ureter could reveal such an obstruction, if obstruction is within the ureter, not sure if it could show an obstruction caused by a pressure of the muscle tendon. What you feel during palpation could be either the tendon of the psoas minor or the ureter. Pain relief after an exercise also speaks for the psoas tendon involvement. …Burning/tingling/electric feeling in the right heel could be from trapped sciatic nerve (in your lumbar spine). CT or MRI could reveal a disorder in your lumbar spine, like a bulging disc or spinal arthritis.

      about 2. Thoughts elicit emotions and can also trigger palpitations or other less obvious changes in heart rhythm. Emotions are pretty physical – they are actually a reflection of the state of contraction of heart muscle fibers in a certain moment. When you quickly change the topic in your mind, the heart may not be prepared well for new thoughts. Heart pain and fainting after hearing unexpected news is well known. If you do not experience other heart/breathing problems, I think you can control this with a certain thinking approach. For example, when you find yourself in the middle of some dramatic thoughts, ask yourself if the thoughts are important for your current life/work or not. Simple questions with yes/no answers. If the answer is “not”, and you are in peace with an answer, leave the thought. If it is “yes”, and if you’re in peace with the answer, ask yourself “should I do something right now”…and so on, with simple yes/no possibilities. I mean, try to “digest” the thoughts in your heart (to the point where you feel in peace with a though), before switching to another topic.

      Try to think about exact timing in which you think the bear and antibiotics work, and what happened 1.5 years ago (hard exercise, lifting something heavy). This can shed additional light to what can be the cause of your symptoms.

  • ren

    Hello,
    I am a 23 year old female. This past December I lost a loved one and became very depressed. Two weeks after the loss I had a reoccuring dull pain in my left lower rib cage. I went to the doctor and he suspected a strained muscle or a problem with my spleen. I went for a pelvic and abdominal ultrasound and an x-ray all of which had normal results. I was also told I have a vitamin D deficiency so I was put on a vitamin D supplement. After about 2.5 weeks, the pain had gone as quickly as it had came. Now, I am having the same dull pain again (for the past week), in my left lower rib cage. The pain is evident when I sit.
    Thank you very much for your time and help in advance!

    • Jan Modric

      Ren,

      pain under (below) the left rib cage can be from trapped gas in the transverse part of your colon. Not necessary that this would cause obvious bloating (distension of your upper left abdomen), but it could. In this case, the painful site would be likely tender to touch. Foods that cause gas (apples, pears, sugary foods, beans, oats…) can aggravate the pain. Stress itself can cause such a pain. It’s called splenic flexure syndrome (splenic flexure is a part of the colon where it bends down). I wish you could find out you can still give or accept love – whatever you need, and love is not necessary confined to one person.

  • jennifer

    I had laparoscopic surgery 11 days ago to remove a 9cm tumor from my left ovary and they also removed my left ovary. Over the last day or so, I have experienced abdominal pain/cramping after urinating that is mostly on my left side and radiates down my left thigh and out toward my left pelvic bone. The pain/discomfort lasts at least a few hours and then generally dissappears until the next time I have to urinate. I have had a great deal of abdominal bloating and gas since the surgery, so I am wondering if this is simply gas related, or possibly something more to be concerned about?

    • Jan Modric

      Jennifer,

      after a pelvic surgery, abdominal adhesions – starnds of scar tissue – may appear and connect bladder and bowel loops, achanging their position and eventaully cause partial bowel obstruction. This may resolve with time. If not, laparoscopy would be needed to confirm and cut adhesions.

      Bloating could be also caused by antibiotics or changed diet. You can try low-FODMAP diet for few days to prevent bloating and see if it helps. If not, or if symptoms become worse, then I recommend you to go back to the doctor.

  • alex

    Dear Jan,

    Thank you for your promptest reply.

    >A contrast X-ray (maybe retrograde ureterography – a nephrologist/urologist should tell) of the left ureter could reveal such an obstruction.

    I’ve done such a visualisation – excretory urography, but the images only show contrast substance in the kidney bases and the bladder. Ureters were not visualized at all.

    > Burning/tingling/electric feeling in the right heel could be from trapped sciatic nerve

    I remembered that exactly 1.5 years ago when the pain started I had a injury of the right knee – as if something was worn out after a long descent from a mountain top. Since that time I can only run with elastic restraint on my knee (I don’t feel any pain when I’m walking). This could be the reason for my heel itching.

    Thank you for your advice on the thought process. I will try following it when the symptoms repeat. I hope this problem will be gone when I solve the abdominal pain problem as the periods of increased abdominal pain coincide with the heart area problems.

    One and a half years ago I felt intense pain in the LLQ (8/10). Since then the pain has been constant at a level of 3/10 to 5/10. The first time it happened was when I was straightening after tying my shoe laces. I wasn’t straightening rapidly or jerkly more of a usual straigthening. I had a feeling as if something would move slowly with a strong pain for about 10 seconds. Back then I thought it could be the stone in the ureter, but again I have to repeat the images didn’t confirm that.

    • Jan Modric

      Alex,

      itch is a feeling that provokes a desire to scratch, so I’m not sure if this is the feeling you experience. Itch usually arises from the skin (skin disorder or allergy). Tingling is like ants crawling and is usually caused by a nerve disorder. Electric shocks are of neurological origin, possibly from a pressure to the nerve, either in your lumbar spine or the knee.

      They are golfists, for example, who commonly have problems with the psoas muscle. Regarding to your activities, you have maybe stretched something there, intestinal hernia would be also possible.

  • milind

    my wife is 40 yrs old she has numbness in lower part of foot, which is worrying her lot, she has no medical history she is fit and fine kindly suggest us the remedy
    with regards
    Milind

    • Jan Modric

      Milind,

      numbness in the foot is usually a result of a nerve disorder, like a pinched nerve in the lumbar spine. A physiotherapist may suggest some exercises, and if this does not help, she should visit a neurologist.

  • Starla

    I am a female, 36 years old. I don’t know how much of a history you need. I have been having pain in my left lower and upper side for about a couple of weeks now. It started right before my period and was severe cramping. Now it is just a constant pain both places. I also have been burping, having gas, and have a hard time passing gas. I also have discomfort with a bowel movement and urinating. THere is also mucus with my urine. I feel like my face is swolen also…. I fell at a bowling alley 3 years ago and have had headaches, numbness in my arms, fingers, hands and have had pain under my left rib for a long time. They have had me on several different medications for treatment. I was taking skelaxin and ibruprofin right before this happened. I have been taking stool softners because of this and I do have IBS. The doctor did a US to check for ovariun cyst and they said they couldn’t find one. Do you think you could give me some insight to what this could be?

    • Jan Modric

      Starla,

      Discomfort (burning?) during urination, mucus in the urine (are you sure it’s from the urine?) and facial swelling (more in the morning? swollen ankles in the evening?) could speak for a kidney disorder.

      Additionally, burping and gas, speak for a disorder within your gut.

      Urinary and gastrointestinal symptoms appearing at the same time can be from infection. Diagnosis is with stool and urine test for both bacteria and parasites and specifficaly for Clostridium difficile toxin in the stool (you should mention all these tests).

      I strongly recommend you to visit a doctor as soon as possible, someone who will order both urine and stool tests, so either gastroenterologist or nephrologist.

  • alex

    Dear Jan and all,
    Yesterday I visited a good ultrasound scan specialist and it looks likely that he found the reason for the problems I was describing above.
    1. Changes were detected within my left psoas muscle with 3×4 cm cross-section. The doctor said the problem had been there for a long time.
    2. The CT scan showed reduced distance between 4th and 5th spinal bones. I have been feeling pain in that area for quite a while but didn’t pay much significance to it.
    Diagnosis – myofascial syndrome of left psoas (myofascial trigger point)
    It matches quite well with the symptoms I’m having. Also the problem was visualised on the scans.
    I was given quite a lot of medication and offered another visit in 2 month time.

  • Jan Modric

    Alex,

    was it psoas major or minor? Any idea about the cause?

  • alex

    Dear Jan,

    Anomaly was found in psoas major.
    The most probable cause – flattening of intervertebral disk. The problems with the heel and the knee can also be explained by the spine problems. These are my personal conclusions based on the doctor’s information. The written ultrasound scan report states the flattening of the disk and muscle anomaly.

  • cdp

    Hi !
    Im a 42yrs.female. I had my gallbladder removed 2o years ago. I have recently(after two years of endless tests) had a diagnostic o Chronic Pancreatitis. I’ tipe 2 diabetic and I also have IBS and IC and 5 weeks ago has a hysterectomy (LSH).
    My problem is trying to figure out if what I feel is due to one of these existing problems,or if it’s something unrelated.
    I feel a pain on my lower left ab .The pain is dull and sometimes improves with a BM and passing gas(IBS ?) and heat pad but I also feel, a “weird” faint pain (like when you bump your elbow)from my upper left leg all the way down to my toes. At the same time,I feel pressure on my bladder and feel like I need to urinate. What bothers me a lot is that,with all of this I also have palpitations and burping. All this happens a few minutes after I eat,so I just know is something related to my digestive and/or urinary tract.
    I have done pretty much every test know to men, including blood tests, colonoscopy,estress tests,utrasounds of heart, kidney, bladder…colonoscopy,endoscopies (3) etc infinitum…
    My doctors (GI,Urologist, gynecologist,cardiologists IP even psychologist)seem to be doing all they can to help,but there is no answer so far. Do you have any suggestions on what can be causing this ? I had to quit my job and for the last two years have been suffering. I go on by the grace of God. Any suggestions you may have will be welcome.
    Thank you !

    • Jan Modric

      To cdp.

      Revealing your complete personal and family medical history with all symptoms (and triggers, relievers), investigations (and pos., neg results), medications and therapeutic procedures (and effect) could help a lot. All this put in a time line,

      including:
      – What is your diet in general, are you overweight, smoke, drink? Do symptoms differ after different foods: dairy, honey, prunes, apples, wheat, oatmeal, legumes, soda, sorbitol?
      – Are symptoms relieved completely after passing gas or bm?
      – Is leg pain affected by body movements, walking, lying down?
      – Can you recall any related event, infection, stress, change of diet, starting some meds…from 2 years ago?
      – Have you tried digestive enzymes?

  • cdp

    Thank you for you prompt response!

    2 years ago,when all of this started I was at work and felt suddenly ill. Went to the ER with lower left ab pain and cramps.But the worst was the shortness of breath. All test came out negative.
    Panic attacks have also been ruled out,since the shortness of breath,palpitation and the pain only happen after I eat.

    I don’t drink or smoke (never did either).

    I’ve been on a diet for IBS,IC and Diabetes, for years. I’ve been dealing with this trio long enough to know what I can and can not eat.
    Do I indulge in a little apple pie once in a while ? you bet ! But I’ll know right away if that is the cause of my misery, and it is not.Chocolate,though is another history. But the thing is,the pain is coming out of nowhere.

    During the last two years -with all the tests,I also found out I’m lactose intolerant,so,diary is out of my diet too.I was tested negative for Celiac.
    I’m also very low on vit. D and am recuperating from Anemia(due to heavy periods,due to fibroids thus the hysterectomy)

    I’m 5f. exactly and weight 132lb.So, I’m not thin but not overweight either.

    I’ve been taking Omeprazole (for GERD) for about 5 years. Recently(within the last two months) I’ve been taking enzimes(doctor’s prescription) for the pancreatitis and a low dose of antibiotics 1x a day for the IC.

    No family history of cancer or any chronic diseases (except for diabetes).
    The pain get worse if I walk o move around a lot and always after I eat.
    Can the IBS and IC or GERD be the cause of my pain even if I’m fallowing a diet ? (although I can say that I have been stressed)
    Can it also be the source of palpitations and shortness of breath? Can the diabetes be the source of the leg pain ?I still have my ovaries so, could ovarian cysts be a cause ?but then,what about the indigestion symptoms ?

    Sorry if I sound a little desperate,but this situation is driving me crazy.

    I really,really appreciate any thoughts you have on this. I’m running out of suggestions for my doctors.

    • Jan Modric

      Cdp,

      – palpitations, shortness of breath after a meal- can appear in dumping syndrome (rapid gastric emptying) or food allergies. Anemia can contribute to symptoms.
      – pain in lower left abdomen releaved by passing gas, can be from gas trapped in the colon or spasm in the colon (IBS was once called “spastic colon”). Have you heard for low-FODMAP diet?
      – pressure in the bladder and a need to urinate can be simply triggered by distended colon (from gas and stool) that presses upon the bladder. By IC, do you mean interstitial cistitis? Were any bacteria found in the urine? Antibiotics do not help in IC, if there are now bacteria. Distended colon can press upon sciatic nerve and cause pain going down the leg (sciatica). Additional disorder in the lumbar spine (arthritis, bulging disc) is possible.
      – burping, GERD – Helicobacter pylori bacteria can cause or aggravate excessive gastric secretion and GERD. Breath and blood tests are available.
      – Did digestive enzymes change anything? If chronic pancreatitis would affect release of digestive enzymes, diarrhea would be a likely symptoms and supplemental enzymes would help. If there is no obvious change, ask your doctor if it has sense to contine with enzymes.
      – excessive bile constantly flowing into intestine can reach the colon and irritate it. Foods rich in soluble fiber, like oatmeal, can absorb some bile and prevent irritation. Soluble fiber can cause gas, so this might not be appropriate.

  • srl 22

    Hi i’m a 22 year old woman and I have suffered from chronic constipation for the passed year. The Dr I see diagnosed me with IBS. They xray me and i’m full of stool. I used to only be able to go to the bathroom with stool softener and now that doesn’t even work. I am able to go about every two to three days but I never feel relief I always feel very bloated and full. This has been going on since March 2009. In recent months I awake every morning to a burning stomach ache and a feeling of nausea. I’m so nauseas that swallowing water makes me gag. Also I’m not sure if this is related to my stomach or bowels but I often feel like Im about to get a bladder infection out of the blue. I’m hoping you will have some answer’s for me because my dr’s are just not helping me and I need relief!

    • Jan Modric

      srl22,

      anything special happened in March 2009? Stress, event, procedure, change of diet, start oi treatment, taking supplements…? How did your problems start – slowly, abruptly, and what was the first symptoms? What is your diet in general? Any other symptoms or eventual chronic diseases?

  • luv@79

    Hi, I am a 31 year old female. Several years ago I began having pain in one specific spot on my lower left side triggered by a bowel movement. Since then the pain has gotten so severe that I would compare it to childbirth. As soon as the stool passes the area of pain, I am o.k., but this last episode was the absolute worst, a large stool passed and I am still in terrible achy pain in the affected area. I am so terrified of what this could be. 2 years ago I had a “normal” CT scan done and last year bloodwork was normal. Do you have any idea what this could be? Thanks.

    • Jan Modric

      luv@79,

      partial obstruction of the colon is one possible cause. It can be caused by
      – something pressing on the colon from outside, like abdominal adhesions, which are not necessary seen on CT. Laparoscopy would revela them, though.
      – something in the colonic wall, narrowing the colon lumen or polyps within the colon. This could be detected by X-ray with barium enema or colonoscopy.

      Colon cancer is extremely unlikely at 31, if you have no family history of this cancer.

  • naomi

    I was browsing to know more on relation between back pain and abdomen pain and came across your website…it was very informative…just for ur info that i’m from india…

    I have been suffering with back pain (especially the lower back). For the past one month, i have been having a feel of tightening accompanied with pain in my upper left abdomen and stinging pain in my back….the doc had advised all possible tests and it came up that i have fatty liver and gall bladder distension…the doc said that the pain in the abdomen could be related to the gall bladder distension and suggested some medicine…he didnt take notice of my back pain though nor try to reason the connection between the back and abdomen, though i strogly felt and still feel that there is a strong connect between my lower back pain and the tightening in my abdomen…can you please suggest what kind of tests that i should go through so that i can be sure what is causing me this misery!

    • Jan Modric

      naomi,

      a gallbladder disorder can cause abdominal and lower back pain at the same time. Gallbladder is distended from some reason, like gallstones – either in the gallbladder or in the bile duct. I strongly recomend you to get an exact diagnosis and appropriate treatment.

      There are other possible causes of abdominal/back pain, like a disorder in the thoracic spine, resulting in a pinched nerve on on side. Another cause could be a disorder of the right kidney.

  • Deezer

    Hi – Thanks for this informative article. I have a very strange abdominal pain that I am hoping you can help me with.

    Symptoms:
    Pain in Left Upper Quadrant near the bottom of the rib cage on the left side – aggravated by driving, sitting & laying on left side (driving & laying on the left side really aggravate the pain). Laying flat on my back & sleeping is the best thing I can do to relieve the pain.

    I have had a CT scan, chest X-ray, Endoscopy, Colonoscopy, and lots of blood work.
    Nothing conclusive (or even abnormal) came from these tests except that they said my duodenum was “scalloped” on the inside & that I likely had Celiac disease (which later blood tests confirmed).

    However, the Gastroenterologist is convinced that the pain is unrelated to the Celiac disease. My stools have been strange sometimes, though in general have been getting better. However, the pain is NOT getting any better.

    It is not a “cramping” pain caused by intestinal gas buildup. It is an aching, sometimes burning or boring pain. There is never any feeling of a sharp pain. When laying on the left side or driving, the pain intensifies as it is aggravated in those positions.

    Any ideas what this could be? Thanks in advance for any help you can give, it is greatly appreciated as I am not sure what to do next.

    • janmodric

      Deezer,

      are you male or female, how old are you? Causes, often not detected by mentioned investigations include:
      – splenic flexure syndrome – gas built within the left part of the transverse colon (this type of gas built usually does not cause cramping). Could be possibly relieved by a low-FODMAP diet. Not necessary that gas would cause any bloating, or maybe there is no gas at all. I assume you’ve already started with gluten-free diet.
      – abdominal adhesions – strands of scar tissue connecting the bowel with adjacent organs, like diaphragm. Can be diagnosed by laparoscopy. Causes include abdominal surgery (anytime in life) or, in women, STD or endometriosis.
      – pinched nerve in the thoracic part of the spine due to spinal arthritis, bulging/herniated disc or other disorder. Diagnosis is with CT/MRI of the spine.
      Here’s an article about pain under the left rib cage.

  • Deezer

    Hi. Thanks for your feedback & questions. I am male, 30 years old.

    I have been on a gluten free diet for several months now. That has improved some other strange symptoms I was having like tingling & numbness in my body, but has not helped the pain on my left side.

    I have never had abdominal surgery.

    I am having an MRI on part of my spine to look for issues there.

  • megan

    i need help im a female an im only in my teens, i have a really bad pain in my stomach its on the lower left side and sometimes can be in the middle but mostly on the left. the pain is really low down and when i get the pain my left leg goes dead. im not eating with the pain or sleeping any ideas?

    • janmodric

      megan,

      you should visit your doctor. It’s possible something is pressing on the nerves and/or vessels that supply your leg. I recommend you to check this personal medical history questionnaire and write down, when exactly is your pain, how long it lasts, when did it start and all other relevant circumstances before visiting the doctor.

  • Deso

    Hello. I’m 19, female. I have pain in lower left abdominal/pelvic region. I would say more pelvic because it’s pretty low downthere. It doesn’t really hurt during normal functioning, but when I stretch really hard it hurts, or if I press on it it hurts. I checked the right side, and when I press on the right side it doesn’t hurt. I checked several sites and thought it could be an ovarian cyst? But those should rupture in about a month or so. My pain however has been going on for months.

    • janmodric

      Deso,

      ovarian cysts do not necessary rupture in a month. It could be also an intestinal hernia, stretched psoas muscle, or other disorder that could be detected by ultrasound, performed by gastroenterologist or gynecologist.

  • tammy

    I have been having severe stomach pain for over a week, right below the rib cage on the right side, Also alot of pain in the back. So bad i ended up going to the er twice this past week, First time they said it was my gallbladder, Xrays showed gall stones, Second time it showed gall stones, One was lodged in the duck whatever that is, said it was pretty good size, was released saying watch what i eat and said it needs to come out, Well with no health insurance no doctor will touch me, Could it be something else because when this all started i wasnt having any bowel movements for several days, Well this is day 10 and still no bowel movements, I had colon polyps back in 1996 that they removed, could that be the problem? The pain is VERY SEVERE With no relief, i have been watching what i eat, But still no movements. I have even started taking stool softeners and laxativs with no relief. what is going on because it is really starting to scare me. certain things i eat makes me throw up, Or even drink, And yes i have lost 11 pounds in less than 2 weeks, You would think with being at the er twice they would of checked everything. When i was released from the er last night i was still in severe pain and they gave me pain meds, which helps with the pain but after about 2 hours the pain is right back, the pain is constant and doesnt go away, They gave me antibiotics while in the er Not sure why but they were, also my white blood count has been very high for the past 10 years and Noone can explain why, they say when its high you have some type of infection, But they dont know from what, Can anyone please give me some answers here because i am really starting to worry and worrying the way that i do is Not good, any help at all would be greatful, I just want to know what is going on and why i havent had a bowel movement in 10 days and why so much pain

    • janmodric

      tammy,

      gallstones in the gallbladder and especially if they lodge in the bile duct can cause severe right side abdominal pain below the ribs, nausea and vomiting. Constipation can contribute to pain. Constipation can be aggravated by pain, painkillers, by not eating and drinking and not moving around.

      What can you do:
      – try to eat – avoid fatty foods
      – ask your doctor to give you something to relieve constipation
      – if pain will persist, surgical gallbladder removal seems to be the first option
      – you should also consider having a colonoscopy, since new polyps could grown in 14 years

      If no insurance, try to collect money for required procedures somehow, or ask which hospitals can perform them free or at low cost. All what you have mentioned can be possibly treated.

  • questionforyou

    I have recently been having these needle like sensations on the middle left side of my abdomen. The pain will arise and become more intense and when it’s there if I touch it it seems to get more sore before fading away. It has happened 2 times to my knowledge in the past week and a half. The last time after the initial pain started to fade it felt like the pain went deeper inside me and continued down to the lower part of my abdomen before fading away. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thank you

    • Jan Modric

      questionforyou,

      does even touching the skin triggers the pain? Or you have to press upon the abdominal wall? Have you change your diet recently? Any change in bowel movements? Could it be an injury? Have you ever had a surgery? Male or female, how old are you?

  • hccelie

    Hi,
    I am a {newly turned} 18 year old girl. I have been having really sharp pains on the left side of my abdomen for the past couple days. I know it could be early in the symptoms, but I am still a little concerned. The pain doesn’t go away. It doesn’t help to sit, lay down, or stand. It hurts especially when trying to get a good/deep breath. I play tennis and I have been struggling with the our daily run. I really don’t know what to do, but it hurts. I appreciate any advice you can give me. Thanks!

    • Jan Modric

      hccelie,

      is the painful spot tender to touch and does pain changes with moving? It can be a torn muscle or intestinal hernia. Try to make an appointment with a sport doctor or orthopedist.

  • Chris

    Hi,
    Im a 25 year old male. For about a week i been having a sharp someties burning pain in my lower left abodominal pain and also lower left back pain. Some times is moves to the middle of my abodomin. Drinking water and Eating helps but the pain seems to always come back. I’ve put a heating pad on both places and it temporaly makes the pain go away but once i take it off about 5 mins later it comes back. Any ideas?

    • Jan Modric

      Chris,

      – Does the pain travels like a band from the back horisontaly toward the abdomen?
      – Is the skin tender to touch or muscles tender when pressured?
      – What happened a week ago – any heavy physical activity?
      – Any change in bowel habit?

  • Chris

    There is no change in my bowel habit. Didn’t do anything really heavy week ago. It is a little tender when i touch it. I have noticed it doesn’t hurt as much when i move but if i laying down or sitting it starts to sting. And It doesn’t seem like it is moving Horizantal. It pretty much does a 180 from where the pain starts in the lower abadomin\lower stomch to the back side.

    • Jan Modric

      Chris,

      one possible cause is a pinched nerve in the thoracic spine (for example, due to spinal arthritis or bulging/herniated disc). Sharp, burning pain affected by body position is a common symptom. Diagnosis is confirmed by CT or MRI of the thoracic spine.

      Herpes zoster (shingles) sometimes starts with pain, and rash may appear only a week or two later.

  • marie

    Hello..I am 34 yrs old, female..For about a week now i have this nagging pain at my lower back, this has been going on for several years already, but the pain is bearable.I usually feel the pain in the mornings when I wake up, after getting up the pain usually goes away..Few months ago we brought this air mattress and for months I didn’t feel any pain in my lower back..We no longer have the air mattress, and somehow the pain at my lower back have worsened this past week..The pain usually goes through my left lower abdomen..This morning after waking up, I felt such unbearable pain, whenever I lift my left foot, the pain gets intense..Now sitting in the couch, I still feel the nagging pain at my lower back which I can feel at the lower spine..

    I remember this pain at my lower back started when I had my son nine years ago, before that i don’t have any pain.

    • Jan Modric

      marie,

      that matress sounds like a good (at least temporary) solution. Pain in the morning is probably from a pinched nerve in your lower thoracic and lumbar spine. Appropriate matress, avoiding lifting or carrying heavy objects and avoiding prolonged sitting can help.

  • Molly

    Aloha.
    I’m an eighteen year old girl, and for about a good month or so I’ve had these pains in my stomach and pelvic area, and along my back. For the most part they’ve stayed on the left side, but occasionally I’ll get a couple of pains on the right or center. I’ve gone to the doctor about two weeks ago, had some ultrasounds and whatnot, and they’ve told me that nothing was wrong with me. My mother thinks that I’m just stressing myself out and that its basically all in my head, but I don’t really think thats the case. Yeah, I’ve got an active imagination, but its not that active. During the day, the pains aren’t as prominent but at night when I’m winding down and getting ready for bed do they become more painful. I also burp frequently, usually in the mornings and evenings. I have been taking some Ibuprofen to help, though it doesn’t seem to do much.

    • Jan Modric

      Molly,

      Houg.
      Did excesive burping appear about at the same time as abdominal and back pains? Would you say are you bloated? Any change in bowel habits, any mucus in the stool? Have you travelled somewhere or eaten any suspicious food about a month ago? I’m speaking about intestinal parasites. Diagnosis is made by a stool test.

  • marie

    Hi. How is pinched nerve in the lower thoracic and lumbar spine treated? Thanks

    • Jan Modric

      marie,

      if hard or air matress or physiotherapy don’t help, treatment is with surgical decompression of the affected nerve roots. One or more operations might be required – it depends on how many nerves are pinched. Surgery often results in complete and permanent symptoms relief.

  • laila

    hi ,
    please i need help i’m vey confused , i have sharp pain in my left side exactllt under my left rib, and under my left breast under my left shoulder and radiate to my neck and under my left arm , plus i have abdominal pain and lower back pain ,the abdominal pain and lower back pain start exactelly after i give birth, i wanna mention that i’m constipated almost all the time and when i take any laxative the abdominal pain get worse unsuportable , i did abdominal sonographhy and the doc say it’s normal but i read in my result that the pancreas is obscured with bowel movement but the doc say it’s normal , i did mri for my back , sonography for the heart ther breast and all normal , i feel dizzy and have nausea but my doc doesn’t wanna listen she always ignore my complain, please if somebody tell me what’s going on , my life stoped i cannot work i canno’t take care of my baby my left side is hurting too much .
    i already see a gyn and did urine test every thing is normal , i’m hypothyroid. help please.

    • Jan Modric

      laila,

      first, it seems you need to solve the issue with constipation. It’s possible your large bowel is full of stool. So, ask a doctor, a gastroenterologist, what to do to solve this. If nothing helps, colon irrigation can be made. When this is solved, you will see if pain still persists. Without doing this, doctors might not take you seriously.

      Please, be sure to drink enough fluid, since it’s possible you are dehydrated. Are you geting treatment for low thyroxine? Have you checked your TSH and thyroxine levels recently? Hypothyroidism can cause constipation. Pains, even those in your shoulder, can arise from distended colon (full of stool) pressing upon the diaphragm.

  • caroline07

    Hi i’m a 20 year old female that has been having pains in the lower part of my abdomen almost like right at my hip line. i’ve had ultrasounds done and blood work and everything comes back negative. i’ve had the pains for about 2 years but just yesterday the pain was so severe it brought tears to my eyes and had me doubling over it seems to feel better if i put pressure on it. do you have any ideas? they had told me that my ovaries and everything are normal. im worried

    • Jan Modric

      caroline07,

      can you check this personal medical history questionnaire to see if you can tell more symptoms, when they started, your previous diseases,medications and eventual surgereries..?

  • sef

    For the past two weeks I’ve had diarrhea…not watery diarrhea but loose, but I have to go after each meal. I recently was on keflex for ten days due to a staph infection in a boil, and also on erythromycin for five days for a bad case of bronchitis. On top of that I have been battling several bugs…colds, fevers, and swine flu since February 1st.

    I am now experiencing pain on the left side between my hip bone and rib cage for the past two days. It’s not debilitating, but I’m a little nervous. I’m uncomfortable with medical things as they scare me a little.

    My dr. is testing me for C.defficile, so we’ll see how that goes.

    However, is there any possibility it is ovarian cancer? I just turned 21 and was previously quite healthy. My Mom has a history of ovarian cysts, but not cancer. Please let me know if you have a chance. Thanks for your help.

    • Jan Modric

      sef,

      C. difficile was also my first thought. These bacteria often overgrow in the left part of the colon after antibiotic treatment. I recommend you to wait for results and then seek further, if necessary. If at any time an ovarian cancer will be suspected, ultrasound of abdomen and other appropriate tests should be done.

  • Vasima

    I have been getting really sharp pains on the left hand side of my stomach. this has been going on for 3 years now the pain comes and then dissapears and then comes and it happens all the time. i went to the doctors thy gave me a tube to put in my faeces and i seriously have no idea what is causing the pain … please can you tell me im getting really worried

    • Jan Modric

      Vasima,

      are you male or female, how old are you? Does pain completely disappear between attacks and in what intervals does it occur? For how long does pain persist? When you have pain, is the affected part of the abdomen tender to touch? Is pain affected by body position? Have you already had any investigations, like ultrasound of abdomen?

  • mc

    Hi everyone,
    my father is a 50 and is having on going abdominal pain for quite a while now. He is also has trouble going to the washroom and has diverticulosis. He has been given colonoscopies and have not found anything else. He has also gone for stool sample, same results. He has a hernia, which he is going in for surgery in april. However the pain he has is not located in the same area as the hernia. Doctor has given him antibiotics, but the pain is still there. They have now decided to give him an ultrasound. Can anyone give an idea of what it could be?

    *He used to smoke, but has been smoke free for about 6 months. He is also more active and has been doing 30 mins of exercise a day(not over weight to start with)

  • mc

    He has been to the gastroenterologist and has done blood work as well.

    • Jan Modric

      mc,

      in which exact part of the abdomen he feels the pain? Is the affected area tender to touch? Is pain relieved after bowel movement?

  • laila

    thank you doc very much , i,m having in the end of this month appointement with gastrologist. for hypothyroid , i take levothyroxine 75 mcg every day almost one y now but still my antibodis are very high i have a follow up in april 1, i let you know about the result, i have one more question can intestine probleme make me dizzy thank you again.

    • Jan Modric

      laila,

      I’m not a doctor. By “dizzy” do you mean a feeling, like before you faint? If so, it could be from dehydration. Sufficient intake of fluid (water preferably) is important. But many other causes exist, a common one is anemia due to iron deficiency. Mention this to your doctor and he might decide to order appropriate tests.

  • mc

    Jan,
    He says he feels pain in the central region, not really specific to one side or the other. He says when he applies pressure to the area he can pin point the spot where it hurts. I don’t think it really goes away after bowl movement since he complains about it constantly.

    • Jan Modric

      mc,

      if he can pinpoint the spot, and the pain is obvious, it could be a stretched muscle in the abdominal wall, or another hernia (umbillical hernia) not yet recognized.

  • Vasima

    im female im 17 well the pain comes abd goes so in a month it happens atleast 3 times .. its major the pain nd wen ther is no pain then its ok i can bare it its minor first i had a feeling that i have stomach cancer but i dont it hurts alot even if i gently push against to where it hurts it hurts when im sleeping mostly, when im walking its ok and when im just sitting in one place it hurts alot then too, no i have not had any investigations doctor has said if the results come out as positive then they will put me on antibiotics they say i may have an ulcer in my stomach if the tablets dont work then can the ulcer spread this doesnt include having an operation?? because im really scared

    • Jan Modric

      Vasima,

      where is the pain – above or below the belly button? When the pain appears for how long does it last? Any nausea, change in bowel habit?

  • kassie poo is worried

    so my friend… boatright…. has really bad lower left side pains…. wat do i do

    • Jan Modric

      kassie,

      is your friend male or female and of what age?

  • Dawn

    Jan,
    Back on January 15 I went to hospital because I was having shortness of breath for a few weeks and feeling tired. They said it was probably bronchitis and gave me zithromax zpak (5 day) I was fine until 4th dose. Tongue started burning, felt anxious no appetite. Didn’t take last dose. Had no appetite for 3 weeks but made myself eat. Rash occured on my back not real itchy looks like pimples. Have been getting hives within the past 3 weeks on my neck and face after I shampoo my hair. Have odd feeling in abdomen under both rib cage like something swollen also on each of my sides. Not a pain, just a discomfort. Bowel movements have not been the same, are loose and thinner then normal with some diarreah and some mucus. Have lost 22 pounds since Jan. 15. Have colonoscopy and endo scheduled for April 6th. Any ideas? My GP is acting like I’m a hypocondriac!!

  • Dawn

    Also……..all blood test and stool came back normal. January Ana test came back positive, March Ana came back negative

    • Jan Modric

      Dawn,

      before you went to hospital and started with zithromax, have you had any abdominal symptoms? Were you coughing? One possibility is you have developed an allergy to zythromax, and this amde you sensitive for something other, like shampoo. So, I recommend you to visit an allergologist – take both zythromax and that exact shampoo you think caused hives with you.

      Intestinal parasites are another possibility. Stool test for parasites can confirm diagnosis.
      Next: sometimes, after antibiotics, an antibiotic associated diarrhea due to overgrowth of Clostridium difficile bacterium can develop. Diagnosis is made by a stool test for Cl-diff toxin.

  • Vasima

    above the belly button .. it lasts for a couple of hours and then disapperas nd then comes again its very saddening 🙁 hmm no

    • Jan Modric

      Vasima,

      causes of sharp pain in the upper left abdomen, lasting for few hours and going away can be due to:
      – urinary stones (in the left kidney or ureter) or other causes of blockage of the urine flow. An ultrasound of the abdomen and urine tests can confirm stones.
      – trapped gas in the colon. In this case a low-FODMAP diet trial (few days) would maybe help
      – endometriosis
      – polyps in the colon

      If you mention these posibilities to your doctor, he/she should know what investigations to order to make a diagnosis.

  • Dawn

    Hi again,
    Before hospital, yes has some discomfort under ribcage area and sides but I can move to different position and it will feel better. I had no cough. He has done stool tests and they came back negative (for the CI-diff also.) Regarding the shampoo, have tried a few different ones and it still happens. All these things happened (except the bowel problem which continues) started 3 weeks after stopping this medication. It has now been almost 3 months and still having these.

    • Jan Modric

      Dawn,

      except shortness of breath, can you recall any other “respiratory” symptom that make you to go to the hospital? Runny nose, itchy throat, fever? Were you bloated at that time. Have you any chronic disease of any kind?

      Shortness of breath may be one symptom in allergy – of any kind – food allergy, allergy to certain shampoo ingredient…

  • Vasima

    Thank you and i will let my doctor know 🙂

  • kayce

    iam 22 female,i have this frequent pain in my abdomen,after which my stomach swells,becomes hard with pain,my stomach feels like it is going to burst and after like 10-15mins,i release gas from my anus.i have also noticed my frequent urinating…hav seen a doctor but am told noting is wrong,can u pls explain this symptoms.cos i dont seem to hold food for long,even after love makin i pass gas or use the toilet…[urin or feces

    • Jan Modric

      kayce,

      excessive gas can be produced from foods that contain a lot of soluble fiber, like beans or oats. Excessive gas can be a symptom of fructose malabsorption or lactose intolerance. Low-FODMAP diet trial, where you avoid fructose, HFCS, sorbitol and lactose, can help you reveal if you have these disorders.

      Frequent urination can be explained by the rectum full of gas pressing upon the bladder. If you also have burning urination this speaks for urinary infection.

      Abovementioned diets should help in few days. If not, I recommend you to see a doctor and ask for stool test for parasites.

  • kayce

    thanks so much,i do appreciate ,i will do a stool test,will let u know what it says,is that also responsible for the swelling of my stomach and the pain i feel…:)

    • Jan Modric

      kayce,

      gas collecing in the bowel can really distend the abdomen and make it hard and painful.

  • Autumn

    Hi, for the past month or so I have been having sharp pain on my lower left side and I cannot lay on my right side with out it sending a pain up my left side from lower stomach to breast or to under my armpit. I also have chest pains that come and go, but my doctor figured that had to do with the lack of me wearing a bra. He gave me pills for that and also pills for my Acid Reflux both seem to be getting better, also I wear a bra at most times even to sleep. My pains on left side outside breast have been better since my doctor gave me pills have gotten better. I now seem to be having pains on my right side torwards center chest right near breast and also I have been having pains in my lower back and sometimes my pains move from the left to also on my right side at same time. My bowel movements were off but since taking medicine and being able to eat again they have been normal. Sometimes these pains keep me from sleeping or wake me up from my sleep. I dont smoke or drink and my blood pressure is fine, but these pains seem to be getting worse. Does anyone have any suggestions to what might be wrong with me, by the way I am 19 and a little over weight, I also I am on the computer alot and seem to be always leaning forward. I have been moving around more as of late and eating better to lose weight, I just need to get these issues under control help would be apperciated.

    • Jan Modric

      Autumn,

      would you say your abdomen is distended? Tender? What was a change in bowel habit you’ve mentioned – constipation, loose stools, unusual color of the stool, excessive gas? I recommend you to remid your doctor to check your spleen and lymph nodes in your armpit and to order appropriate blood tests.

  • JC

    so i have had abdominal pain on my left side, and it has been there throughout the day. It is below my ribs. What could it be?

    • Jan Modric

      JC,

      is the pain there all the time, and is constant or cramping? Any bloating or excessive gas, nausea or other symptoms? When did the pain start?

  • Lizana

    I’ve been nauseous for about 2 weeks. My appetite has decreased. I’m having a dull pain just below my ribs on the left side that comes and goes no matter what I eat. Today I had nothing but flavored water and the pain and nausea is still there. I almost feel like there is a ball 2 to 3 inches startingunder the tip of my ribs.

    • Jan Modric

      Lizana,

      with a ball you mean a lump? In this case I recommend you to visit a gastroenterologist.

  • Vivi

    Im 26, female. I have a regular diet, and weigh 127 lbs. I have had a pain in my lower left abdomen for approx 4 days. It is a dull pain, but constant. It hurts if I breathe in deep, and when I press on it. It feels as if I need to BM, but I have been regular, mostly. For the first 2 days I had diarrea that was yellow in color and mostly liquid. The pain is about 2 inches to the left of my belly button, and about 1 inch down. I am not pregnant, to my knowledge. Have not had sex in 2 mths, and have had 2 cycles in those mths. Took a pregnancy test 1 mth ago, and was negative. Please help 🙁

    • Jan Modric

      Vivi?

      Any blood in the stool? Symptoms you’ve described can appear in food poisoning, which often heals on its own, but if symptoms won’t lessen in the next day I recommend you to visit a doctor.

  • NiCKxG

    I have been experiencing sharp pains on my left side of my body right above my hip. It hurts to breathe in and out and the heavier i breathe the worse it hurts. It seems to happy the worse in the early morning hours and it hurts to move sometimes and keeps me awake. Please help me out with this, my mother thinks its a pulled muscle, but i beg to differ.

    • Jan Modric

      NiCKxG,

      is the area tender to touch?

  • NiCKxG

    Yes, there is a certain place i touch and automatically get a sharp pain.

    • Jan Modric

      NiCKxG,

      if so, then this strongly speaks for a strained/torn muscle.

  • Chick

    Hi

    I dont know if you can help me or not, but i have a dull lower left side pain (just above my hip bone) i cant rub it as it’s internal, i have had this for about a month now and i seem to have it from the moment i wake up and even trying to sleep on my left side can cause the ache.
    my bowels are fine i go every morning, and dont have any other problems, do you know what cause be casuse this as its starting to get worse and as i sit alot of the day for my job its drving me nuts, but i dont want to go to the Doc if its something i can fix. thank you

    • Jan Modric

      Chick,

      where exactly is the painful spot/area – above or below the navel and how many inches away from it? Is the left side of your abdomen distended, tender to touch? What has happened a month ago, have you had some hard exercises?

  • Dan

    Hi I am a 32 year old male who suffered from lower UTI 2 weeks back. I was put on a dose of antibiotics which I unfortunately failed to take as a full course. The UTI re-appeared 3 days back and lead to a state of severe pain during and after urination and I restarted the antibiotics today. Yesterday I happened to be on a bus for about 2 hours when I could’nt empty my bladder. This has lead to a mild pain in the left side abdomen under the ribs at the side. Is this hernial pain? What should I do?

    • Jan Modric

      Dan,

      you should consider re-occurence of the infection as a new infection that requires anouther full course of antibiotics. Pain uner the ribs could be from the left kidney, if the infection has spread upwards. If the pain continues, I recommend you to see the doctor again.

  • Dan

    Hi Jan. Thanks for the prompt reply. Yes, I’ve started on the full course of antibiotics once again since today morning and the urinary pain has now left me, and the abdominal left side pain though lesser as compared to yesterday is still there a little bit. Do you think I should wait for a day or two for it to subside?

    • Jan Modric

      Dan,

      I believe you can judge your situation according to your symptoms. Infected kidney is often (not always) tender, if you tap it slightly with a fist. If anything unusual happens (blood in the urine, fever..) during or after this course, consider to have a urine culture test to identify eventual bacteria that do not respond to your current antibiotics.

  • Tracy Hatchell

    My daughter has had horrible abdominal pain since end of January. She started with migraines two weeks later that became chronin with no relief. She was diagnosed with abdominal and head migraines then after meds and being in hospital she had no bowel movement fopr over 4 weeks. Just did go lytely X2 then had colonoscopy and EGD 2 days ago and she has had horrible abdominal pain, tender to touch on belly, can’t stand up straight, hurts too bad. Eyes look black underneath, nausea. What should I do. Can’t ever get doctor at MUSC.

    • Jan Modric

      Tracy Hatchell,

      I can’t say if this is abdominal migraine or not. Diagnosis of abdominal migraine is done by a doctor’s judgement, when other disorers are excluded. Constipation is not typically connected with abdominal migraine; in your daughter it rather results from a combination of painkillers, inactivity and eventual irregular meals or dehydration. Constipation itself can cause abdominal pain, as can bloating (distended and tender belly). So, one thing you can do is to find a reliable doctor (dietologist, gastroenterologist..), who will help to solve her constipation in a healthy way. I do not recommend you any risky and rough cleansing methods, not supervised by a doctor.

      Investigations, you’ve mentioned cannot clearly show abdominal disorders outside the gut. MRI of the abdomen could show more, but could still miss endometriosis, for example. Something pulling or pushing upon the bowel from the outside of the bowel (like displaced uterus) could cause all her symptoms, including headache. I’m not saying she should have all mentioned investigations, but from what you’ve listed, organic abdominal/pelvic disorders cannot be excluded.

  • Tracy Hatchell

    daughter is 11 years old

  • chick

    Hi

    no it doesn’t hurt to touch as it feels inside not on the outside, its below the navel right above the outer left hip bone, i cant feel anything when i rub it, no i haven’t done anything to cause the pain. thats why i am at a bit of a loss to what it might be

    • Jan Modric

      chick,

      it can be related to colon, or something pressing to it. An ultrasound of the abdomen is usually the first investigation.

  • kramone

    A few times in the last 24 hours I have experienced a sharp, burning, throbbing pain in my left side, about a third way up my abdomen. The first time it didn’t last long, and the second time it lasted longer. A few days ago I experienced severe lower back pain, and I’m currently experiencing pain in my back, along with a dull pain in my side.

    • Jan Modric

      kramone,

      would you say they were crampy pains? For how long did they last first and second time? Any burning urination, changed in bowel movement, fever, or anything other? Is the area where you felt the pain, tender to touch or pressure?

  • Jeffis

    I have a constant pain in my left side just above my waist. My urine and bowel movements seem to be normal. My urine is clear and my stools seem normal in size and color also.

    I have an occasional bout of prostatitis, which I had about two months ago but took antibiotics for it. It seems to have cleared up but the pain in my left side is back. It is also the side I sleep on at night and it’s become painful enough to interrupt my sleep.

    I’m reluctant to go to the doctor because I am self-employed with an awful insurance plan ($3,000 deductible) and they hold everything the doctor writes down against me. Some deal huh? So much for patient-physician privacy. Now insurance companies, and soon the government, will be in every exam room. Of course you can opt not to disclose but they can opt not to insure you. So I try not to go to the doc unless I absolutely have to.

    Thanks for any answer you can give.

    • Jan Modric

      Jeffis,

      where exactly do you feel the pain – how far from the upper part of the pelvic bone? Is it a dull, burning…pain? Does it changes with change in body position? Is the area tender to touch or pressure? Is that part of abdomen more distended than the right side? How did the pain start – suddenly, slowly? So you had left-sided abdominal pain during prostatitis, then prostatitis with all symptoms went away, and now only left-sided pain is back? How old are you?

  • claud

    Hi I’m a 23 year old female and I’ve been experiencing pain below my ribcage on the left side. The pain seems to be a little tender at the touch but for the most part it’s just consistently the same. It does seem to irritate my lower back on the left side as well. This has been going on for about the past week. After the first day of having the pain I was constipated however I believe that was because of pain medication I had been taking for a concussion. I was in and out of the doctors offices for about a week due to my head injury and I mentioned my pain in my side each time. They would do a quick exam and determine i should just wait it out with my head injury and mostly said it was probably from constipation which it wasn’t because I had it before! So It has come a gone a few times throughout the week waking me up at night at least twice. I called my doctor and he said just take pain medicine for it and a little pepto.

    Also when I was in and out of the doctor they ran blood test and a urine test but came up with nothing out of the ordinary.
    I just figured I’d see what you thought….

    -Claud

    • Jan Modric

      Claud,

      trapped gas in your transverse colon could cause pain and tenderness under the rib cage. Gas or stool in the sigmoid colon or rectum could press on the bladder and cause urge to urinate. Gas could be just from constipation (from painkillers and injury stress) or from eventual Clostridium difficile bacteria overgrowth in the colon (sometimes occurs after taking medications for some time). Even a slight burning during urination would speak for an UTI.

  • claud

    I forgot to mention that more recently I’ve felt the urge to pee right after I’ve already gone. but I don’t have any pain and it seems to be clear and normal. It doesn’t feel like a uti just not as intense it’s a very small urge.

  • Minde

    I am a 29 year old female. For a few days, I have been very sore and tender on my lower left abdomen. The pain extends from just below my belly button to my left side. The pain is mostly dull and not unbearable, but does hurt to touch and also varies in severity throughout the day. My stools and urine production and appearance seem normal and the pain does not seem to by eating. I do not have any other symptoms, fever, chills, constipation etc.
    I should probably mention that nine months ago, I had the Mirena IUD inserted an on 2 or 3 occasions since then, I experienced sharp stabbing pains in my lower central stomach that lasted a short time. I did not seek treatment as they didn’t last long.
    Could this be a cyst or ovarian problem or is it more likely a problem in the colon?

    • Jan Modric

      Minde,

      does pain go, like a stripe from around the belly button to the left side? Any back pain. Does pain changes with body position (sleeping)? Is the area tender even to a slight touch? In this case it could be shingles (Herpes zoster) – a rash can appear in some days (few weeks). Or it can be from a pinched nerve in your thoracic spine.

      Mirena causes several side effects and could possibly cause this pain. Regarding your irregular menstruation, I suggest you to get it removed.

      Pain from the colon would be likely confined to the left side. Pain from ovaries would be lower in the pelvis. I can’t exclude any of these, though.

  • Minde

    I should also have noted that I have not have a regular menstrual period in 2 years. I was pregnant in 2008 and then I nursed my son until having the Mirena inserted. I’ve never experienced a cycle while on it, though occassionally I will have light spotting.

  • JNieto

    Help….
    could a pinch nerve or other problems with a nerve CAUSE Lower Left Abd. Pain?
    My symptoms appear after a short walk standing up for short time also. I feel that this side of my abdomen will just tear away. DULL-HARD Pain..(this pain is killing me)..
    3 surgeries L3-L4, L4-L5, L5-S1 Fusion, bars-rods-screws (cages)…..

    JN

    • Jan Modric

      JNieto,

      yes, a pinched nerve or a muscular spasm in your back could cause the pain in lower left abdomen.

  • scared

    hi im feeling nausea, dizziness, spots, pain, doctors think i have kidney stones but havent gotten back to me yet, now im going through this.Disorientation, headaches, getting so scared. Do you think if it is stones that they are passing or close to it? also constipation at the moment, freezing, weird pain in different parts of my body, but alot on my back up and down. i just keep walking and holding off calling an ambulance. Should i phone the hospital???

    • Jan Modric

      scared,

      disorientaion, headache, dizziness speak for a disorder that has affected your brain from various possible reasons. Yes, you should phone to hospital and tell them your symptoms. It may help a doctor a lot, if you reveal all your current symptoms, what has appeared first and what has followed.

  • WorryBug

    I am a 31 y.o female who for the last 7 years has been 100 lbs overweight after having 2 kids. Currently, I’ve noticed that I have more belly fat than before and have had a hard time controlling my hunger and diet. I’ve been trying to loose weight different ways, pills, exercise, diet, plans, but its just so hard. Lately I’ve been bloated a lot and have been recently (last 2 days)experiencing mild sharp pains located in the left lower quadrant of my abdomen around the umbilical region and radiates towards the left in general. It has been tender to touch, and I can feel very small prominant nodules. I also have stretch marks in those areas so not sure if its related to that, or something else. The pain comes and goes. Other than the pain, I have had on going left hip and low back pain for the last year which at times is numb and very sore. Its alleviates after a massage or hot shower. Could the left abdomen pain have any connection?

    I have no current medical conditions, but do have a history of high triglycerides and have had an Rt inguinal surgery repair in 1999. Last had lipid labs done in January and all looked normal according to my internist. Have any guesses or things for me to look for to further evaluate? No diarrhea, vomiting noted. Stool is of normal color. I’m seeing a doctor tomorrow and my gynecologist the following week.

    • Jan Modric

      WorryBug,

      you should tell the doctor about the nodules – they can be related to stretch marks or hernia or other. Main dietary causes of bloating are fructose malabsorption and large amount of soluble fiber.

  • Mollie

    Hi Jan,

    I’m sixteen years old and for the past few days I’ve had a pain on the right lower side of my stomach. It only hurts when I suck in or press on it (although NOT on release and it is fairly tolerable so I don’t think it’s appendicitis), and it’s even more painful when I need to pee, so maybe it’s bladder-related? Do you have any idea of what this could be?

    • Jan Modric

      Mollie,

      pain during peeing can be related to your female organs or the colon (or urinary tract, if there is a cloudy urine or burning urination). Gynecologist or gastroenterologist can perform the necessary tests.

  • Anita Joyce

    49 yrs, feeling bad 2 weeks, flank pain, general but mostly left side under rib cage, nausea off and on. Thought I had a kidney infection (no UTI feel), but dr says no (but not cultured). General poking, had strong reflex, light pain right of naval but not horrible. No constipation. Under lot stress for 2 weeks, better now. Gave me NSAIDS told me to check back next week. Burning, gnawing feeling, not directly below breastbone but left. At night hurts more when I lie down, sometime strong pain in my left side. Hurts no matter which way I lie, but seems internal, not muscle. It may feel a little better when eating, unsure. Sometimes do have a throbbing feel at night. Had gallbladder out 10 yrs ago. I feel bloated upper area. Six months ago diagnosed with severe D depletion, 50,000K 3 months, now on 1,000 a day. Could this be pancreatitis? Ulcer?

    • Jan Modric

      Anita Joyce,

      gastritis or gastric ulcer usually causes pain below the breastbone (could be slightly to the left or right). Bloating related to stomach disorder would be likely accompanied by belching and heartburn. Food intake aggravates gastric ulcer pain. Pain from duodenal ulcer would be worse at night and relieved by food, though. Ulcers themselves do not usually cause nausea or bloating, unless they are caused by H. pylori infection. NSAIDs would likely aggravate burning feeling in gastritis or ulcer.

      Mild acute pancreatitis causes pain in the upper central or left abdomen, and nausea, but not likely bloating. Severe pancreatitis would result in fat (and vit A, D and E) malabsorption, bloating and loose, sticky, floating stools.

      Small intestinal disease, like Crohn’s or celiac disease of severity to cause malabsorption of vit D would likely cause diarrhea and general malaise.

      Did not quite understand “poking, had strong reflex”…

  • mluckduck8

    My 19 yr old daughter has hiccups every day and they are very loud. SHe also has sharp pains just below her left breast. The doctors have ran blood tests, ultrasounds, and CT scan of abdomen. They have found nothing. She has been treadted for acid reflux it did not help. She was put on meds for anxiety it did not help. Does anyone have a clue of what this could be? Its been going on for a little over 6 months.

    • Jan Modric

      mluckduck8,

      hiccups occurs when the diaphragm (the main breathing muscle) is irritated. A common cause in the air or gas in the stomach (possibly from infection by Helicobacter pylori) – this would likely go with some burping. Hiatus hernia is another stomach related cause. The sharp pain below the left breast suggests a disorder in the thorax (pleuritis, pericarditis…), irritating the diaphragm from above…or a disorder in the upper left abdomen, like adhesions (from endometriosis or eventual pelvic inflammatory disease or surgery in the past). Adhesions can be easily missed by CT and even MRI of the abdomen (can be seen during laparoscopy). So, it is important to find the cause of the pain below the brest. Pain under the breast aggravated by deep breathing would suggest one of the mentioned organic disorders in the thorax or abdomen.

      Kidney failure causing imbalance of electrolites in the blood is another cause of hiccups. The left kidney would be tender (or not) when tapped and there would be other symptoms (changed urination, malaise?)…

      Other possible causes of long term hiccups: irritation of the eardrum (foreign body, middle ear disorder…), brain disorder (MS..), a mass in the neck pressing on the vagus nerve…Psychological origin is also possible (this would be kinda obvious – like asking for attention…). In these cases, the pain under the breast would be a result of hiccups.

      More causes of hiccups

  • Shawn1990

    My girlfriend has been having a lot of sharp pains in the left side of her rib cage for sometime now. Along with this she has been feeling dizzy randomly and gets sick to her stomach a lot but not throwing up. She’s tired all the time as well. None of this started until she started her birth control. She took it for two weeks and it made her terribly sick, so she quit taking it. Ulcerative colitis runs on both sides of her family as well, i don’t know if this will help with the diagnosis, but I thought it should be mentioned. What could this be?

    • Jan Modric

      Shawn1990,

      a gastroenterologist can order a blood test that may sometimes reveal inflammation in the case of ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease. X-ray with barium enema and colonoscopy are next tests in diagnosing these diseases.

  • balgirl16

    I’m 18 years old and just the other nihgt while my boyfriend and I were having sex I started to get this sharp pain inside of me, felt like it was my uterus and it hurt so bad I couldn’t move and he didn’t go in to far and we weren’t having rough sex. The pain finally calmed down a little but the next day it hurt a little to walk and when I pushed on it I felt pain. Its better now except when I have to push to pee, my stool has been a bright green the past few days but today it was normal.

    The pain is now my whole left side and it hurts to push on it and laying down now its like a throbbing pain. It sometimes hurts on the line that sperates my rib cages and my right and left side. My breasts are very tender but I’m not supposed to start my period till around the 10th of may.

    About a month ago I had a bladdr infection, urinary tac infection, and a mild kidney stone but that pain was on my left side. I have no idea what it could be. I am shakey a lot and sometimes feel sick.

    When I get my period I have horrible cramps that sometimes make me throw up and even before my period I get bad cramps that come and go.

    • Jan Modric

      balgirl16,

      this sounds serious enough to see a doctor, either gastroenterologist or gynecologist. Green stools, unless caused by green vegetable food or food additives, are not likely normal. Shakiness suggests infection.

  • xskuttlesx

    For the last 7 years I have had a pain in the middle of my back, mostly on the left side, but sometimes on both sides. The pain also often shoots around my side or sides into my abdomen… I’ve been to doctors about it several times, and they never bother to look. They just give me muscle relaxers. Just recently I’ve experienced a sharp pain on the left side of the middle of my back (near my spine) and soon after, in the left side of my lower abdomen, where my ovary is, I guess. I’ve felt this before but never at the same time as my back pain… I’ve tried drinking cranberry juice to flush my kidneys, doesn’t help. Pain meds don’t help, because I have to keep taking them… So I just don’t take them unless I cant walk from the pain… Any advise??

    • Jan Modric

      xskuttlesx,

      an urinary stone arising from the kidney and travelling through the ureter could cause a pain in the back and then in the lower abdomen. Urine test can reveal certain substances that are usually increased in urinary stones.

  • A guy in pain

    hi, i’m a 24 year old male, i have a left side abdominal pain since one month ago and it won’t go away, if i drink cold it hurts more, i have seen doctor several times and they gave me some medicine and it simply don’t work, they gave me pain killer, acid down, digestion tablet, wind, and all kind of shit and non of it work, and at last i got raped by a female doctor, she inserted her finger into my asshole to perform some kind of what? rectal examination? and nothing abnormal was found… but she suggested it is recommended to put a camera into my asshole again to see my internal colon,??? man i’m 24 and normally people this age don’t do something like this… please help me man, what could be possibly happen to me, the pain is like 4/10, it may not prevent me from doing what i want such as working, having sex, but it bothers me 🙁 … okay, the first doctor told me it was urination infection, the second time he told me it was wind trapped inside, and the third one told me it was muscle torn… wow… there is nothing abnormal about my shit, pee pee or what ever… sad 🙁

    • Jan Modric

      A guy in pain,

      torn muscle is tender to touch and pain changes with body movements. Urinary infection can be detected by an urine test. Trapped gas is common – you don’t tell where exactly is your pain – below the ribs, above the hip…what kind of pain is it, is your abdomen bloated distended, are you constipated…

  • SummerTime

    I have had severe menstrual cramps for as long as I can remember, but never during my period. Always before. It’s so bad that I don’t want to move and Advil/Tylenol doesn’t help. The pain is in my abdominopelvic area and my back. Also just this week, I have started having a pain in my left side, just above my hip. I don’t know what caused it or made it go away. Now I have a slight pain in my left pelvic area and should have finished my period today. Any ideas??

    • Jan Modric

      SummerTime,

      you can search for “menstrual cramps causes” online to get some ideas. A gynecologist or gastroenterologist can perform an ultrasound of pelvis/abdomen. Disorders of ovaries (cysts..), Fallopinan tubs are common…

  • it rains

    hai, i was wondering of what would you make up of the pain on the lower right side of the abdomen, but it only occurs in the morning, it hurts so much that you can’t sleep anymore and have to wake up… checked it with a doctor, who said it wasn’t appendic and nothings wrong, but the pain doen’t stop…..thanks in advance

    • Jan Modric

      it rains,

      causes differ in males and females. Telling what kind of pain is it, where exactly is it, does it spread anywhere (leg, groin, back..), other symptoms, like changed bowel habit, nausea..would help.

  • Kt

    Hello, I am a 33 year old woman. I have experienced health problems since I was 16. I have recurring UTI’s that do not show up on tests until I am bleeding, I am almost always suffering from this. I was diganosed with Inflammatory Bowel Disease a few years ago and it is a constant battle for me. I now have inflammation in my muscles that is causing chills and fatigue, sometimes I can hardly move. I also have PCOS and can’t seem to loose weight. I have been short of breath now for a few years and it causes me to worry about what is wrong with me. I see a doctor every two weeks and I am on various medications. My question is what can this all be related to. They keep telling me it is no specific disease and I just have general inflammation in my body. I feel like there has to be a connection or something. What if we are missing something? Why am I so short of breath and what do I need to say to my doctor to get them to take me seriously? I told them about it and they said it was a panic attack or stress, but I am not unhappy. This out of breathness comes when I am talking to someone more than any other time. Any help would be great. Thanks,
    KT

    • Jan Modric

      Kt,

      there should be more determined diagnosis than a general inflammation. If you know, that inflammation is in your muscles, you can ask the doctor how exactly is the disorder called – it should be written in your medical documentation.

      Shortness of breath during speaking (but not at night or during physical effort?) could be from a disorder in the vocal cords – this would obviously affect the speech sound, asthma, inflammation of diaphragma, lung inflammation…Other causes could be obesity (?) – shortness of breath would be aggravated when lying down. A pulmologist can perform breathing tests.

  • lucky

    I have a hernia since I was a child, have my tubes tied after two vaginal births, constant pain in my chest behind my breast plate,and I also have constant movement in my stomach as if I was pregnant. Please help me to understand my symptoms.

    • Jan Modric

      lucky,

      here is a list of causes of pain behind the breasbone. To judge about abdominal movements I would need to know more symptoms? Burning feeling in the throat, for example speak for gastric reflux. Excessive gas can be from fructose malabsorption, excesive soluble fiber intake, and so on.

  • CJ

    I have pain in my lower left side its not the pain of kidney stones, also i had kidney stones once I went to the doc because it hurt so much i got there and it finnaly went away the doctor told me i could leave then but it does hurt pretty bad sometime and lower part of my stomache hurt wehen I have to poop lol I just dont know what could be wrong with me? And on top of this I have no insurance so cant go to the doctor

    • Jan Modric

      CJ,

      there are different causes of pain in the lower left abdomen in men and women and at different age. To say more I would also need to know, where exactly is the pain, is it constant, any change in bowel habit, constipation, underlying disease..

  • Caralea

    My daughter who is 11 is having lower left side abdominal pain. She is mid way through puberty-ie; pubic hair and well developed breast buds. She had a similar pain about a month ago which i took her to the doctor for. Urinary infection was ruled out by tests as was any bowel issue as her bowel motions are normal, no constipation, diarrhea or vomiting. The symptoms are the same this time, however nausea is present occasionally. The pain is more severe this time causing her to double over in tears. The pain seams to fluctuate in severity but she has had it for 5 days. I took her to the doctor again but they said to give naprogesic or panadol and return if pain persists. She has not yet had a period or any spotting. what is the most likely cause of this pain?

    • Jan Modric

      Caralea,

      telling where exactly is the pain (above or below the navel and how far away from it) could help. Also, is it cramping pain lasting for minutes/hours and disappearing, or is it constant pain. Is it tender to touch and is there any bloating on the painful side. Or any mucus in the stool.

      Left sided abdominal pain accompanied with nausea is often a symptom of an obstruction of a hollow organ, like the colon, small intestine, Fallopian tubes. Obstruction can be from the inside, like a polyp in the colon, or inflammation of Fallopian tubes, or from outside, like adhesions from endometriosis (yes, it occurs in girls of this age) or something other pulling or pressing from the outside on one of the hollow organs. Intestinal parasites can cause abdominal pain and nausea without diarrhea. One cause of abdominal cramping is lead poisoning (usually from ingestion of some old paint in old houses). Her pediatritian should say which investigations would be necessary. If there is no fever and diarrhea (from stomach flu or food poisoning), I think you should take this seriously.

  • stephanig

    Hello,
    My boyfriend is 29 years old. He was recently diagnosed with high blood pressure and is boderline diabetes. The dr prescribed medicine for high blood pressure.For the last few months he has been experiencing chest pain, they have ran numerous tests and have found nothing causing it. Today he said that he is experiencing a dull, pressing pain in his lower left abdomin. He is not nauseuas, has not been constipated and does not have a fever. He has not been urinating more frequently and at this time has no other symptoms.lease help. Thanks

    • Jan Modric

      stephanig,

      left lower abdominal pain in men, if not tender to touch or affected by body position or moving, usually arises from the colon. Without other symptoms and investigations it’s hard to tell more. Even constipation or built gas could cause such pain. In irritable bowel syndrome IBS stress or certain foods are the triggers. If he is constipated, he might have colonic diverticles. Various types of colonic inflammation are possible but all this can be checked by colonoscopy. About chest pain – I would really need to know more characteristics, is the pain constant, aggravated by effort, or pressing on the area, and so on.

  • watchmantim

    Got a question… I am 42 yr old male. About 7months ago I was 30lbs over weight and began to eat right and exercise and lost those 30. Matter of fact i started running and have raced a couple of time already. About a month ago i was cross training doing crunchers (double arm) and some lunges. It was right after that day’s exercising that started feeling the pain.It got a little better for a short timebut the oain is back. I feel it most when sitting up from a laying position. It pulls from the bottom of my leftside abdomen through my groin and into my inner leg. Any ideas?

    • Jan Modric

      watchmantim,

      pain appearing after an exercise aggravated by body movements is likely from a stretched muscle in the abdominal wall, or psoas muscle, for example, or from intestinal hernia.

  • Kt

    Thank you for the information. They called my inflammation in muscules, Myalgia and Mytosis. However I read that those are just symptoms and not an actual diagnosis.
    As for the shortness of breath, I don’t have it laying down at all. I do loose my voice if I raise it at all or talk too much. I guess there comes a point that you have so many things to tell the doctor, it all just seems to get lost in the process. I worry that if I have inflammation all over in my muscles, bowls, and bladder, then what if it is attacking my lungs and heart too?
    KT

    • Jan Modric

      Kt,

      myalgia is muscle pain and myositis is muscle inflammation – but to say this, a histological investigation of a sample of the muscle under the microscope should be done. So, I do not know if this “myositis” is meant seriously or “just like that”. Systemic sclerosis, systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), rheumatoid arthritis, polymialgia rheumatica or other autoimmune disease could accompany inflammatory bowel disease. Crohn’s disease itself can affect esophagus or throat…It could be also fibromyalgia rheumatica. It is a rheumatologist that can identify such a disease after physical examination, blood tests and eventual muscle biopsy. To confirm an organic cause of shortness of breath, an ENT could check your throat, but I’m not sure if this should be the first next investigation. If shortness of breath appears only during talking, but not during physical effort, it’s likely psychological or from a localized disorders of the vocal cords. Lung inflammation would likely cause shortness of breath during effort.

  • SD

    Hello,

    For more than a month I have been having recurring pain under the bottom of my left ribcage. It seems to be worst in the morning but can act up anytime. Sometimes antacids help but sometimes they don’t. I am taking co-dryamol tablets at night for pain and the upper left abdominal pain started a few weeks after I started taking this medication. Could this be the culprit? I am traveling and can’t get to my doctor for a month or so. I am sometimes constipated but that isn’t a new thing.

    Thanks for any comment or advice.

    • Jan Modric

      SD,

      pain relieved immediately or shortly after getting up may be from abdominal organs pressing on a bloated part of the colon that runs below the rib cage. Bloating could be also in the stomach – you wouald likely experience some burping during or after the meal in this case. Infection of the stomach caused by H. pylori can cause stomach bloating (and burning from gastritis). Stomach bloating can be treated by treating eventual H. pylori infection (after testing). Colon bloating can be sometimes prevented by a low-FODMAP diet.

  • ximlo13

    Hi,

    I also have an ongoing pain in my mid to lower left abdomen. I have noticed that sometimes if I go a while without eating my abdomen fills with gas and gets very distended. Currently, I feel as if I have to go to the bathroom but cannot. It almost feel like something is stuck to the left side of my navel. Where I can also feel my heartbeat pulsating strongly. Most of the time, my stool has mucus and occasionally some bright blood. There are days when I go to the bathroom like 6 x’s and others are normal or cannot go unless drinking coffee. This has been going on for a very long time now and I have done a ton of tests and nothing has really come out. Scheduled for a sigmoidoscopy after a stomach X-ray but had one done about a yr. ago and doc. said it everything was fine. Should I do it again (with new doc) who did Xray. My uncle just died from colon cance, My aunt has polyps in her colon, and my other aunt( who I live with) was just diagnosed with H.Pylori. What should my next step be..

    Just want it to go away already =(

    • Jan Modric

      ximlo13,

      it is important to find a cause of bleeding. Mucus and bright right blood can both appear (among other) in:
      – hemorrhoids
      – Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis (inflammatory bowel disease)
      – colonic polyps
      – colonic cancer (rarely before 50 years of age)
      – intestinal parasites (these would be diagnosed by stool test for parasites)

      Colonic polyps can be seen during sigmoidoscopy, but colonoscopy is required to check the entire colon for polyps or Crohn’s disease. Before colonoscopy, an X-ray with barium enema can be done and can show polyps.

      H. pylori affects stomach (gastritis or ulcer) and may (not always) cause *upper* abdominal bloating, burping and heartburn. Bleeding from a gastric ulcer would result in black tarry stool and not brigt red blood.

      More than one of the mentioned disorders may be present. You may discuss about these options with your doctor.

  • lucas

    ok recently i had a uti and was given anti-biotics for treating/curing it and so about after a week it was healed and so now 3 weeks later i was mowing my front yard outside i was wearing a long sleeve black shirt after i finish i felt alittle sick so i put up everything and went to lay down about 2-3 hours later i felt some pain/pressure on both my sides under my ribs,well it went away about 10 minutes later and didnt bother me for the rest of the night,so now its today and i woke up this morning with a sharp pain in my lift side/left ?kidney? feeling dizzy,light headed,nauseated(i think i spelt that wrong) and belching well after about 3 hours the pain and most of the other syptoms had subsided but the side is still alittle sensitive to touch,well its now the third day and i woke up with some shortness of breath and stomach aches.im not sure if this a kidney stone or kidney infection

    • Jan Modric

      lucas,

      in kidney infection, the kidney, when tapped slightly with the fist on the back, below the rib cage, is usually tender. Burning urination and cloudy urine are likely in this case.

      Belching speaks for a disorder in the stomach or small intestine. Two common causes are infection with H. pylori and intestinal parasites, like giardia. Shortness of breath and area below the rib cage being tender to touch may be from distended stomach or intestine – from gas – pressing upon the diaphragm.

      Lightheadedness and nausea can be from dehydration, among other.

      When you speak with the doctor, you should mention belching specifically. Also, which exact areas of the abdomen are tender to touch.

  • ana

    Good day. Yesterday at the middle of the night, I felt like bloating because I needed to pee, but I didn’t get up because I was so sleepy. I was able to hold it till 7 a.m. Before I got up, I kinda pushed my stomach in (below my belly button)and kinda tap it, then I went to the bathroom to pee. When I went back to bed, I started to feel sever pain like there’s gas or air inside my stomach (below my belly button). I also felt like I had to excrete, but I can’t because whenever I force my self to excrete, the pain is getting even worse. I felt like throwing up and my whole body got cold but I was sweating. I started to shiver and I lost my energy and I laid down on the floor of the bathroom twisting due to too much pain. I thought I was gonna die and I was thinking to call 911 but I didn’t have enough energy anymore. After few minutes, I forced myself to boil ginger because it makes me feel warm whenever I drink it. I wore my socks and long pants. After drinking ginger, I took Pepto Bismol and kinda massage my belly then took a nap. I recovered somehow. Today is another day, and I was hoping that my stomach doesn’t hurt anymore, but it’s still kinda hurt most especially when I push it, although not so bad as yesterday. Only the part below the belly button hurts (inside). I am worried that my uterus or bladder or intestine got a problem… Should I have Xray or CAT Scan soon..? I am worried that it might get worse again. Thank you so much..

    ~Ana~

    • Jan Modric

      ana,

      bloated or stool-filled rectum can press on the bladder and trigger the need to urinate. Lower abdominal bloating can be from constipation, (partial) obstruction of the colon and other causes described here: http://www.healthhype.com/causes-of-bloating-and-gas-flatulence.html

      X-ray with barium enema can reveal physical obstacles in the colon (like polyps) causing bowel obstruction. On the other hand, a disclocated uterus or something other could press on the colon and blocking the passage of the stool. A gastroenterologist can say, which investigation, if any, is needed.

      Common foods causing bloating are fruits and many other fruit products (high in fructose), foods high in soluble fiber, like oatmeal, legumes….Constipation can be aggravated by insufficient drinking, lack of dietary fiber, inactivity, certain medications.

  • Rached

    Hey this might be a little off topic, i just felt like i need some help in figuring out this matter. I’m a male, and i underwent gastric banding last year. The past few months ive been waking up with the most intense stomach cramps ever… its taking atleast 2-3hours for me to relax too.

    • Jan Modric

      Rached,

      the surgeon should be able to provide detailed instructions about the diet and explain symptoms.

  • lucas

    “Jan Modric” thank you very much for your advice and help,um currently i cant go to doctors because i dont have insurance or way to pay for it,so is there things i can drink or medicines i can take?

    • Jan Modric

      lucas,

      “pressure” under the ribs on both sides, belching, and stomach pain speak for gas built in the stomach and/or in the bowel. You do not say where exactly was the “sharp pain on the side”. Constipation with bloating can cause such pain, but this does not exclude other possible disorders.

      In constipation (?), dizziness and shortness of breath may be due to dehydration and distended stomach/bowel pressing upon the diaphragm.

      Food poisoning would likely cause some diarrhea.
      Intestinal parasites can cause an exact combination of symptoms you’ve described- I’m not saying it’s this.
      Eating a lot of fruits or drinking soda sweetened with sorbitol or HFCS few to several hours before the symptoms onset could cause these symptoms. In this case a low-FODMAP diet for some days could help. Drinking water (in amount to maintain regular urination – at least 200 mL in the morning) can help in eventual dehydration.

      I can’t exclude kidney infection or stones. Infection would cause burning at urination. If the sharp pain on the side was from the kidney, tapping the kidney (on the back) would likely cause pain.

  • vdhiman

    I am 23 yrs old male.almost 3 months before i had a sharp pain in my middle chest like food stuck in my chest.then i took eno n took my meal.after 1 hr it was fine.next day i felt pain in my left abdomen going to my left testes.i dignosed with whole abdomen ultrasound but normal.then gas and constipation,hearburn started and i started to take light meal.i took papaya and antibiotics regularly but there was no permanent cure.the pain up to left testes was removed up to some extent but gas and chest pain have ruined me.i felt waitloss.then doctor recommended me to endoscopy and left sided colonoscopy but normal.doctor said there is some infection in colon but report was normal.now the pain and burning in lower left abdomen continues and a lot of gas.i m unable to pass gas through anus.gas is moving in my whole abdomen and sometimes as a pain in left side.bowel movements are also not fine.partially hard stools.i think this is not a big problem but i m uncomfortable from 3 months and it is affecting my life.i take light meal and i dnt drink,dont smoke but dont know wts the problem.i took triphala also but not so beneficial for me.what should i do??
    thanks a lot in advance

    • Jan Modric

      vdhiman,

      a good gastroenterologist should be able to make the right diagnosis and treat you.

      Gas, weight loss, constipation and burning chest (from acid reflux) could be due to:
      – intestinal parasites, either one-cell parasites or worms (stool test for parasites exist)
      – fructose malabsorption, symptoms are triggered by foods high in fructose or sorbitol: fruits, soda, honey, commercially sweetened foods. A diet trial by removing all problematic foods for about a week would help in this case.

      Pain in testicles can be due to intestinal hernia, kidney stones, infection or other disorder is the testis or in the bowel.

  • vdhiman

    in addition to this before 3 months i used to have spicy food and didnt drink enough water.i used to take food at outside as i am an student but now i am self cooking my food.but still the problem continues.plz suggest me what should i do for permanent relief.should i go in AIIMS, New Delhi for better treatment??

  • vicky

    hi ive nevre oostad enything on here befour but im so worried so here goes,i have been feeling quite mild 2 modred upper abdonimal preasure its their 24/7 apart from when i lay flat on my back,ita been their now for bout 3 months i had blood tests done witch showed i had helicobactus diease i have finished the antibiotics but the preasure feeling is still their i am also taking omeprazole as my dr ses i propley have an ulser,i dont have any pain at all i dont suffer with gas or heartburn its just this discomfort in tne mid upper abdomen im 35 years of age,could it be anything serious,thank you

    • Jan Modric

      vicky,

      a stretched muscle would be tender to touch, and pain from gas in the stomach would be likely relieved by burping. If this is not the case, a gastroenterologist can say what could be the cause.

  • missmae

    I’ve been having pain on the left side of my mid-upper abdomen. It happens sometimes after I eat, maybe 30 mins to an hour. It doesn’t happen all the time, but when it does it really hurts. I had my gal bladder removed in March after I had my 2nd child. They said I had gal stones. The pain feels like my gal bladder did. I don’t want to have to experience pain like that again, so I’m just curious to know what it could be.

    • Jan Modric

      missmae,

      teling where exactly is the pain, if possible and is the painful spot tender to touch would help. Also, if there is any change in bowel habit.

  • john

    hello i recently have been having digestive problems and think it may also be dehydration. but today my stomach ached all day the feeling like when you just threw up. then i got a very intense sharp stabbing pain in the center of my stomach under the ribcage twice. i also have been having some constipation. it feels like when im done theres still something there.
    i drank water it made me burp alot. i also have been hospitalized for some type of sulfur problem

    • Jan Modric

      john,

      pain in the center of the stomach and (sulphur?) burping after drinking water could be from infection of the stomach by Helicobacter pylori, to mention only one possible cause. Blood and breath test exist among other. Another cause could be intestinal parasites.

  • julianna

    Hi
    I am 14 and my name is julianna. yesterday when i woke up i felt a pain in my lower left abdomen. It wasn’t bad at all but throughout the day it got worse and it felt like it wrapped around from my lower left ab to my lower left back. I thought i could try to sleep it off so i took a nap but it still was there. After i went to the bathroom it hurt way more and i could barely stand the pain. Right now, it hurts but it is tolerable but i sort of feel nausea and uncomftorble. please help!! im getting worried

    • Jan Modric

      julianna,

      I recommend you to speak with your parents, who may help you to decide if you need to see a doctor. The pain and nausea, as described, may arise from the colon, and if there is no diarrhea or bloating (for example from a lot of plant food or food poisoning), some investigation may be required to find a cause.

  • Sarah

    My LMP was on the 22nd of April, although it was rather short in comparison to my others, I had intercourse before that said period and then again on May the 2nd (due to ovulate the 5th May), then on the 11th May I did a Clear blue digital test which came up pregnant straight away and then said 2-3 weeks.

    Since that day I have had a day of light spotting and excruciating pain in the left side of my abdomen which goes down my left leg.
    I went to A&E and they said by dates I shouldn’t even be getting a positive test and all they did as a urine sample and said that it looked like I had a UTI, I remember when I was pregnant with my son every initial test of my urine said i may have a uti but when it came back from the lab everything was fine. Obviously in the hour i was in A&E they only did the initial test on my urine.

    He said it couldnt be an ectopic as i didnt scream when he pushed down on my tummy?! and i wasnt far enough along?

    Since going to A&E the pain has still being continuasly ther and now sort of covers my whole tummy, it is made worse my coughing, urinating (especially my left side) and I am having trouble with bowel movements.

    I’m just wondering if you may have any other ideas as to what this pain might be? I have had fresh spotting 2 days intermittently and the pain which i have described above.

    Surely even the best HPTs wouldn’t pick up HGC hormone 10 days before an expected period unless I was further along than I thought?
    Which is making me worry this pregnancy might be an ectopic, God knows the last thing I need is one less tube as I struggle enough with miscarriages.

    So I guess my question is it normal to have pain that doubles you over and fresh spotting with a UTI?
    Should the doctor maybe have tested my hormone levels?

    Thanks Sarah

    • Jan Modric

      Sarah,

      UTI usually causes burning urination at least. Urine sample could be checked for bacteria and pregnancy. Not jumping up after pressuring on the abdominal wall does not exclude ectopic pregnancy.

  • julianna

    ok thank you for the help. i will speak to my parents right away but now today i have constipation. what could that be from? and now the pain in my left side is now in the middle and it hurts when i press down on my stomach. any ideas what that could be from?

    • Jan Modric

      julianna,

      tenderness may be just from distended abdomen (?), which could arise from the gas built in the colon (left side pain) and then also in the small intestine (middle abdominal pain). One possible cause of gas built is constipation itself, but it could be from several other causes – now I don’t know, if you are bloated or not.

  • Ervin

    Hey Jan

    • Jan Modric

      Ervin,

      hey!

  • julianna

    hey again.
    so my mom took me to the doctor and i got a ultra sound and a flat plate? some x ray on my belly. and turns out i have a cyst in my ovary! but the doctor said it should not be too serious or harmful
    thanks for all the help! :)!

  • cobby174

    Hi Jan,

    I’ve been to over 9 doctors or so, and none seem to be able to diagnose my issue. I’m 18 years old, male, tennis player and have had left abdominal pain for about 4-5 years now where which before I was a runner (and a good one). I was wondering if you could throw some guesses around. I have severe left abdominal pain when I’m running, and I’ve had a CT scan which showed up nothing of hernias apparently, and an ultrasound which didn’t show up diverticulosis or hernias either. So the doctors decided it might be a hip, referred me off to ortho specialist and they xrayed my hip (of course they came up with nothing).

    Most of the doctors always lie me down and press my side..which doesn’t really help cause i don’t feel pain. They don’t understand..it’s only when I run, or if I run then *jump*. I have severe lactose intolerance..and it definitely gets worse if I have icecream or milk, which made me suspect gas. Gas in bowels can cause pain…BUT…then I stopped diary altogether and pretended I was allergic to milk. However, even then I still got pain when running in the left side..not all the time however, but most. Then, when I’m not running, and jumping I still feel the pain. I suffer somewhat from chronic constipation. Recently I even went to a specialist who suggested constipation would not probably cause such a pain. STrange…

    And most people always tell me it’s a stitch…and they look at me retardedly when I say it’s not a stitch. I know what a stitch is..I used to be a runner and I’m 18 years old >> and when I do get stitches I can run through them so easily, because the pain is nothing compared to this one which makes me stop running altogether.

    The only weird thing I get is throbbing on the left side at night sometimes…like my heart is beating around the more upper abdominal areas. Also…I get leg numbness on the left leg too, but the physiotherapist told me it was a clipped nerve from carrying something heavy wrongly….
    don’t think they are related though..

    i hate my left side =(

    Thanks,
    Cobby

    • Jan Modric

      cobby174,

      knowing exact location of pain could help, also does pain radiate to the back or shoulder.

      Gas could cause such pain, yes, and this could be due to lactose intolerance, fructose malabsorption, IBS, constipation or other disorder not likely detected by imaging investigations. If you have lactose intolerance, you might need to avoid even small amounts of lactose. You may have additional condition, like fructose malabsorption. In IBS, certain random food could cause gas, but commonly a group of nutrients called FODMAPs may be a culprit. Constipation CAN cause bloating and pain. Drinking enough water and taking enough dietary fiber with meals can help to relieve constipation.

      Pain in the side (along the line going down from the armpit) can arise from the increased pressure in the spleen – typically aggravated by running.

  • Misha

    For about the past 2 weeks, I’ve been having dull, ongoing pain in my left arm. Not necessarily on the inside, just all over.
    It’s not severe, doesn’t wake me from sleeping, but I’m concerned.
    No chest pains, but I have had them before due to stress…a doctor has told me that.

    I’m 26 years old and worried it could be heart related, but maybe it’s also due to my posture at work…sitting and typing all day.
    I work night shifts as well, so my sleeping patterns are very different from most people.

    any ideas?

    • Jan Modric

      Misha,

      pain in te arm can arise from a pinched nerve in the cervical spine; a bulging disc is one possible cause, and a sitting work is a common risk factor. CT or MRI of the neck can reveal spinal disorders.

  • turbo

    over the last ten years I have noticed on the odd occasion (a couple of times a year)a very sharp and short pain just below the navel, and slightly to the left – but sometimes to the right. It has caused me to double over in pain, and I sometimes get quite stressed about it and need to sit down. It only lasts a split second, and can be any number from one bolt to 6 bolts of pain all in succession. it is usually all over after a few minutes but I am aware of it for the next hour or so though there is no pain felt or to the touch. I don’t think the pain is worse if I touch the area, it feels really deep. Lately over the last few months it seems to be happening more often, though each time is still only a few ‘bolts’ of pain and lasts a few minutes.

    I am 32 years old, male, and overweight (5’9″ and about 230lb)

    • Jan Modric

      turbo,

      there are the small intestine and bladder below the navel. One possible cause could be a (temporary) intestinal hernia. It could be also an adhesion. Maybe an ultrasound would show more.

  • JPDOM

    Hello there,

    I’ve been having lower left abdominal pain for about two weeks now. It gets worse when I drink alcohol, and it makes me feel quite fatigued. I’ve also noticed that the pain can often spread, in a dull way, to my upper left thigh. I’m currently seeking medical advice, but am a little concerned. Would anyone have any idea what’s going on? Thank you for your time.

    • Jan Modric

      JPDOM,

      telling are you male or female, and age, could help a bit. Also does pain changes with body position or moving, and is the area tender to touch.

  • justin

    I get dis funny sound from d lower left part of my stomach…i wonder what the sound it and sometimes i get pains especially after i have had a few drinks of alcohol. i also have excess gas. please help me out. thanks

    • Jan Modric

      justin,

      sounds in the left lower abdomen are usually from gas in te colon, and there are quite some causes of gas. It could help a lot, if you can tell if you get these symptoms after eating sugary food, dairy or fruits.

  • JPDOM

    Hi Jan,

    Thanks for the reply. I’m 28, male, gave up smoking 7 weeks ago. not particularly tender to touch, no. i just feel like everthing is blocked up, sometimes radiates to the back aswell. probably less painful when I stand up. Thanks again for your time.

    • Jan Modric

      JPDOM,

      if by “everything is blocked up” you mean constipation, this can be from quitting smoking. Alcohol can add to constipation.

      You can try to:
      – have regular meals, bowel movements
      – drink enough water (not soda or fruit juices) jusz to maintain proper hydration (meaning urinating few times a day) , no need to exaggerate
      – eat enough dietary fiber – especially vegetables, whole grain bread and other foods that may relieve constipation
      – be physically (and otherwise) active
      – avoid alcohol and caffeinated drinks since they casue dehydration; also avoid foods that cause constipation . Avoid legumes, oats, and large amount of fruits, which can cause bloating.

      Colon cancer rarely appears before 50; Crohn’s disease would probably cause malaise with fever or diarrhea. Urinary stones in the ureter would likely cause sharp painful cramps…

  • rachael1211

    I am a 23 year old female with really bad left side pain..it is mostly below my ribs…it hurts when i move and sometimes when i breath….i don’t have any bowl problems nor do i have any vomiting…i don’t have any brusing anywhere and i don’t feel any swealling..it almost feels like i have a baseball in my side but when i lay down it feels like my side is falling inward…it has been going on for a while and with health ins. i don’t have the funds to go see a doc..any suggestions on what could be going on…

    • Jan Modric

      rachel12111,

      your side “falling inward” – can you see this, and which part – abdomen or thorax (under the ribs) does fall inward?

  • rachael1211

    it isn’t actually falling it, it just feels like it when i lay down on my right side…the best way to discribe it is like a charlie horse in my side that just won’t go away…

    • Jan Modric

      rachel1211,

      this would really need some more description:

      1. Where excatly is the pain?
      – Pain in the upper left abdomen (in the front) below the rib cage is often from gas built in the transverse part of the colon. It does not necessary cause any visible bloating, but the pain is usually aggravated by bending forward and is often somewhat tender when pressed with the fingers. A low-FODMAP diet could help in this case (a more simple version is a low-fructose diet).
      2. Is it constant pain?
      3. When did the pain start?
      4. Other symptoms: nausea, loud abdominal sounds, belching, heartburn…?
      5. Do you have any chronic disease?
      6. Do you tae any medications?
      More questions about personal and family medical history

  • JPDOM

    Jan,
    Thanks again. I suppose I am a little worried about cancer. I’ve smoked on and off since I was 12, so it’s my biggest fear! Have been prescribed colofac, so I’ll try that out.

    By ‘blocked up’, I more meant that it felt like I have a lot of mucus to bring up as a result of stopping smoking. I’ve been eating regularly and trying to avoid alcohol and am quite active.

    Thanks again for your help.

    • Jan Modric

      JPDOM,

      unless you have a family history of a colon cancer in persons before 30 years of age, it is not realistic to have a cancer at 28. Smoking is probably mentioned somewhere as a risk factor, but this goes in combination with age.

      A pinched nerve in the lumbar spine is another possible cause. Pain would be in the front or back side of the thigh. But this would not likely be aggravated by alcohol…

      Gas built in the left colon can cause pains that change with moving around and body position.

  • eleni1

    I was pregnant two months ago maybe a bit more, but i chose termination. I am worried i am again as i am starting to get pains in the lower left of my stomach. It feels like something is inflating or pushing out against it. It also makes me feel sick. Is there any other explanation because the test said no but i feel it could be wrong.

    • Jan Modric

      eleni1,

      “something inflating or pushing out” and appearing in a short time may be gas built in the colon from various reasons, like diverticulitis or partial bowel obstruction (nausea can be in both conditions).

      If you think it could be (ectopic?) pregnancy, you can speak with your gynecologist.

  • jrrob77

    i’ve into sports (karate) for a long time and i’m very active in this kind of sports and sometime in 2001 i join a tournament and i was hardly kicked by my opponent in my left lower side of my abdomin.. since then i felt a pain that it felt like there’s something broken inside. does that hard kick affects my internal organ?

    • Jan Modric

      jrrob77,

      – where exactly is the pain (in inches from the hip and navel)
      – is it constant or random pain, is it triggered or relieved by something
      – is the area tendet to touch and does it changes with body positon /movements?
      – I guess you aremale, how old are you?

  • jrrob77

    i’m 32 right now and i’m a male.. the pain is just below my left ribs and sometimes the pain radiates to my left hip on the back.. its a constant pain but sometimes it disappear for a few days and if i do a sit ups it will trigger the pain.. when i defecate it gives a little bit of relief.. i’m really confused.. pls help..

    • Jan Modric

      jrrob77,

      gas built in the transverse (below the ribs) and descendent (on the left side) colon could cause such pain, especially if you are constipated. Avoiding foods that produce gas could help.
      The other possibility is that a scar tissue has grown in the abdomen on the site of the kick and is now pulling at intestinal loops. A gastroenterologist or orthopedist could say which investigation could show this.

      So, roughly said, it can be either a digestive or orthopedic issue.

  • Michael1991

    My girlfriend called me at 5:00 this morning crying and saying her stomach has been hurting her since sometime yesterday. She’s tried sleeping through the pain but it doesn’t help her because even if the pain goes away, it gets worse without warning. She also said that she threw up a little blood but not much. I’m not sure what she meant by this but she said something like it was little strings of blood. Discard that if it doesn’t make sense because I’m not too sure if I’m describing it right. Also, for a few months her lower left side of her stomach has been hurting her but she said its moved more towards the center of her lower stomach since this has happened. I’m worried so please help me if you think you may know. Thank you.

    • Jan Modric

      Michael1991,

      blood that is thrown up usually originates from the stomach or duodenum, and blood that is spit up, originates from the respiratory system. A likely cause is gastritis or peptic ulcer – in this case a doctor (gastroenterologist) should say which investigations might be needed. A common cause of gastritis is an infection of the stomach by Helicobacter pylori bacteria – diagnosis is made by a breath test or during upper endoscopy.

  • Bibiana

    I have been having diarrhea for 2 weeks now. The first time it happened was just a few hours after eating salmon (raw salmon in the afternoon, diarrhea w/ liquid at night). The diarrhea pain persisted through out the days after and I start having small quantities of very soft yellow stool (no liquid), at least 2 and plus times a day. Sometimes I have gas and the pain goes away. As of now, my upper left abdomin has cramping pains several time a day, and I feel like i have to go to the washroom, but nothing comes. It never happened to me before and I am worried. Please let me know what is happening to me. Thanks

    • Jan Modric

      Bibiana,

      a food poisoning with bacteria or parasites is possible. A gastroenterologist can order appropriate stool tests.

  • maree

    Hello, Oh boy i hope you can help. I too have pain in my left side under the ribcage and it sounds like i have splenic flexure syndrome but its not just there, sometimes i have it on the right side too. Sometimes it is dull sometimes it can be sharp. My doctor thought that it was ibs, she said that my blood test only showed inflammation. I am 24yrs old, 190lbs (i know ive been eating healthier and exercising its taking a really long time)its seems to happen when im sitting and my legs and arms fall asleep quickly. I have no nausea, vomiting, good stools…i know it doesn’t sound like much but it comes on so suddenly and it worries me and so now my body gets anxious alot thus causing anxiety attacks…thank you

    • Jan Modric

      maree,

      if your blood “shows inflammation” and if inflammation is in the bowel, then this is not IBS, since in IBS no test shows any abnormality. Your doctor should explain you what that inflamation mean, and what further investigations to make. One possible cause is Croh’s disease, another one is celiac disease..but lower or upper endoscopy would be needed for diagnosis.

      In splenic flexure syndrome some gas is trapped in the left part of the transverse colon and causes pain, but gas can build also on the right side. Gas can result from inflammation in the small intestine or from food intolerance, like lactose intolerance or fructose malabsorption. Food intolerance does not result in inflammation, though, so the cause of inflammation should be found first. A gastroenterologist should know what to do.

  • maree

    i guess i want to mention too that i have seen a regular doctor too who was stumped. i used to eat horrible, fast food all the time, overeating (obviously) and slowly over the last year i have changed my diet because for six months i had serious issues with bowels coming out when they shouldn’t…could this really be IBS and is if so wouldnt i have ibs attacks? its been almost 6 months since my last “ibs attack” ….i just cant take the worrying anymore and the docs arent helping….thanx again

  • K_Connerty

    For the last 5 years, I have been experience sharp burning pains in only ONE particular spot in the left abdomen. It is to the left of the naval and down a few inches. Same spot everytime. Hospitals have done CT scans that come back clean, no IBS, no diverticultis, etc. I was recently diagnosed with a RIGHT inguinal hernia. Could this pain be a side effect of that???? I find that pain meds dont usually help it, and it seems to be brought on by food and stress. Some times it is brought on by nothing really, but mostly food and stress…especially dairy and greasy foods. I am starting to think ulcer maybe?? But wouldnt that show up on a CT contrast?? If not, wouldnt the ER doctors maybe even consider that?? I’ve been there 10 times in the last 3 years for the SAME pain…you would think they would consider something. No money for a GI specialist…but working on it. Anyone have ANY clue what I am going through? Or anyone have this same problem? If so…WHAT IS IT! It’s destroying my life!!!!!!!

    • Jan Modric

      K_Connerty,

      first, causes of lower abdominal pains differ in males and females….Right hernia causes symptoms on the right side, but there could be another hernia on the left – this would not necessary be seen on CT, but a gastroenterologist should be able to detect it during physical examination.

      The diagnosis of IBS is given when no other disorder can be found by investigations. IN IBS, besides the pain, constipation or diarrhea, or both alternating, are usual symptoms. Avoiding problematic foods could help. Here is one suggestion about foods to avoid in IBS.

      Shallow ulcers can be missed by CT with contrast; often they can be seen during colonoscopy. Ulcers occur in Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. Ulcers would probaly result in blood in the stool and mentioned diseases usually cause nausea, tiredness, diarrhea…so, one thing to try first is the mentioned diet.

  • Cutedani6

    I’m 24 year old female who has been had mid-lower left adominal pain along with cramping, nausea, severe bloating for almost 9 years. It started when I was 15 yrs old went to hosptial numerious times before they realized it was my appendix. They said my intestines were twisted and my appendix was behind my colen. I was symptom free for 2 years after surgery, then it all started back up again. It doesn’t matter if I eat or drink stand or sit. The pain, bloating and nausea is almost always there. I get so bloaded, I look 6 months pregnant. I’ve been to many hospitals (b/c the pain gets that bad) and numerious dr’s and specialists. Everyone gives me a different diganosis but the main one is IBS. I’ve been put on numerious medications for the “IBS” and nothing has helped at all. I’ve had x-rays, ultra sounds, blood work, gullbladder checked and everything keeps coming back normal. But there had to be something wrong. I’m in pain and sick EVERYDAY!!! Please help if you can!!!

    • Jan Modric

      Cutedani6,

      I do not know if “twisted intestines” are the cause, but you can try to limit/remove some foods that cause bloating, (certain sugars and soluble fiber) from your diet. Honey, fruits high in fructose, soda, legumes, oats are examples of foods that may cause bloating. If diet doesn’t help, a gastro surgeon can tell, if a bowel obstruction can be a cause of bloating.

  • Mazelle

    I’m a 37 year old female. A few months ago I started to have sharp pain in my left lower abdominal, it feels like it’s inside my ovary or something, but its very intense for a while and then it’s gone. I noticed it was always right after I had my period. My period is not heavy and it’s only for 1 day now, it used to be 3 days. What can that be?
    Another new thing, I started to have some sort of a pulsing pain right under my left ribcage. It’s actually very sore, but it’s only in the mornings, then it’s gone for the whole day. Next morning it’s there again, and only for a short while, but it’s so intense, I have to grab my side and hold it tight until the pain is gone. What can that be.
    Last thing, recently I started to have heavy cramps right in the middle of my lower abdomend when I have a bowel movement. It’s not that I’m constipated or anything, it’s just this weird feeling in my lower abdomen, it almost feel like it is in my bladder. I also have to grab my abdomen when it occurs. Any advice?

    • Jan Modric

      Mazelle,

      when there is no other symptoms, like nausea, diarrhea, fever, tiredness…pains in the mentioned area can be initially considered as cramps in the bowel. Think if you have changed the diet recently, or you are under stress. Pains can be from gas built in certain parts of the bowel. One thing to try is a diet with limited amount of fructose (in fruits), lactose (in milk) and other subsances, collectivelly called FODMAPs.

      Bowel is sensitive to hormonal changes (thyroxine, progesterone, adrenalin) and levels of certain minerals (sodium, potassium…). If the problem persists you might want to speak with a gastroenterologist.

  • kimberlyb531

    I suffer from lower abdomin pain. It is pretty consistant but sharp pain or cramping will come and go. This has been going on now for a good 6 years. I have seen my PCP, a gastroenterologist, two surgeons and my obgyn. I have done the lactose intolerent test, I have given stool samples,I have had the laparoscopy surgery. No one can find anything. The pain can sometimes worsen when I am stepping on my left foot-or putting pressure on the left foot.
    There is a lump- oval shaped about 1.5 inches long in my lower left abdomin. I can not always feel it and every time I wewnt to the surgeon I couldn’t find it. My Obgyn has felt it and she is unsure what it could be. Please help!! I keep hitting dead ends and I don’t know what else to do, I want the cramping and pain to go away
    Kimberly

    • Jan Modric

      Kimberly,

      one possible cause is an intestinal hernia bulging out through the abdominal muscles but then going back again. A gastroenterologist can say if this could be detected by an ultrasound – but the hernia would need to be there during the investigation.

  • JPDOM

    Jan,

    Just a quick note to say thanks for your replies they were much appreciated.

    JPDOM

  • josh234

    Hi,
    My friend has been having pains for about a month now and I’m just trying to help figure out whats wrong with her…she says its to the left of her belly button, and it’s usually there when she wakes up..sometimes it last a few hours, or all day..or just a short time..and it can either be really bad or just mild..one time it lasted for 8 straight days so she went to the doctors, and they checked everything, even did a CT scan, and found nothing.. anyone have any ideas on what might be wrong? thanks

    • Jan Modric

      josh234,

      your friend can check this personal medical history questionnaire to provide more details to the doctor.

      Important questions are: where exactly is the pain (in centimeters from the belly button), is the area tender to touch, can be any lump felt, was any trigger or reliever identified so far? Any other symptoms, like nausea, bloating, constipation, diarrhea?

      Examples of abdominal pain that may not show any changes on the CT image:
      – constipation, bloating
      – intestinal hernia (when it bulges out it can be palpated with the fingers, but the lump may disappear when it retracts back).
      – abdominal adhesions (after abdominal surgery, Crohn’s disease, pelvic inflammatory disease, endometriosis)
      – stretched abdominal muscles
      – urinary stones in the ureter

  • josh234

    thank you for the reply 🙂 i’ll talk to her later and get back to you

  • josh234

    Ok, she said everything about her does feel normal, except she does get nauseous. She also had a pelvic exam, but isn’t sure if they checked for everything you listed of what wouldnt show on a CT scan..she does do yoga, is it possible she hurt something during that?

    • Jan Modric

      josh234,

      yoga excercises can result in stretched muscles (would be tender to touch) or can aggravate an existing spinal disorder, like a bulginc disc in the lumbar spine, resulting in a pinched spinal nerve and pain in the lower back and abdomen. Neither of these disorders would cause nausea.

      To me it sounds, like a partial bowel obstruction. The cause of such obstruction can be outside of the bowel (adhesions from endometriosis, for example – this can be sometimes found only by laparoscopy) or inside the bowel (polyps formed in Crohn’s disease, for example – this can be seen during colonoscopy).

      She would really need to say where exactly – related to the belly button – is the pain, character of the pain (dull, crampy, burning) and go through the questionnaire (link in above post) and put all symptoms, eventual procedures she had, medicines or supplements she takes, in an exact time line.

  • Marie

    Not sure if this is allowed but I needed help. Four days ago I started having intense pain on my lower back, right side, whenever I moved. My mom told me to start drinking water and cranberry juice since it could be I was developing a bladder infection. I started doing as she advised, but the day after it was worse. I had no appetite, a really bad headache and just felt nauseous. I even noticed after I urinated that it had lightly pink blood on the tissue. Eventually the pain subsided though still felt weird, like dull almost, pressure-like and it was also in my abdomen. The headache went away after Ibruphrofen, but I slept awful. The next day I was bleeding heavily from my vagina, which I believe is my period. I had my period exactly a week before this, though it was short and light. I’m not sure if that’s the cause of all this, but I’m never irregular and never this heavy.

    The last two days I’ve still had no appetite, and it’s off and on that I go through the pressure at my side. I’m dizzy and headaches come and go. Very emotional where one minute I’m fine then the next not. My heart seems to speed up faster, though I only drink water now. And my legs feel heavy and swollen off and on as well. I’m still really heavy as well. And constipated.

    It sounds like a lot of symptoms, and just typing it up makes it sound ridiculous but I’m not sure what to do. I have no insurance and I’m afraid that if I do spend the extra money to see a doctor that it’ll just come back as PMS, though I just feel awful. And am afraid it could be a kidney problem or a thyroid one.

    If this is in the wrong place, please tell me and I’ll move it – and sorry for saying so much and hopefully you’ll be able to help.

    • Jan Modric

      Marie,

      having two vaginal bleeding a week apart is not just a PMS. Lower back pain could be from a kidney infection. The right kidney is located just under the lower ribs on the right side of the back. Infected kidney would be likely tender when tapping it slightly with a fist. Either urinary system or your female organs or both may be affected. All symptoms you’ve mentioned can be from an infection. An urine culture test would confirm/exclude urinary infection – this should not be so expensive. A gynecologist should be able to tell what to do and also order appropriate tests, including urine tests.

  • Marie

    I forgot to add that I’m 19 (turning 20 in a month) and a female.

  • nicole

    Hi
    I am suffering from entire back pain since last week in addition for few days now I am also having lower abdominal pain on the left side. My left breast is very tender and has mild pain. I don’t know what is wrong with me.

    • Jan Modric

      nicole,

      a gynecologist can find a cuase of breast pain and tenderness.

  • josh234

    alright, thanks again 🙂

  • Ann

    I’ve felt pressure/dull pain in my lower abdomen on the left side for about three days now. It is located approximately 3 inches to the left and half an inch down from my bellybutton.
    I was supposed to get my period about four days ago, but I haven’t got it yet. The pregnancy test is negative. I’ve never had any cysts or similar problems, my last gynecological check-up was two months ago and the doctor said everything was fine.
    Other than the pain/pressure, there are no symptoms. My digestion is regular, stool is normal, no fever/vomiting/nausea – everything seems ok other than the pressure/pain and missed menstrual period.
    I’m a 30yo female.

    I would appreciate any suggestions what could be wrong, I’m not sure whether should I go to the doctor right away.

    • Jan Modric

      Ann,

      if your period is otherwise regular, visiting a gynecologist is a good idea.

  • Ann

    wow, fast answer :). yes, my period is regular, so I guess I better make an appointment. thnx

  • JulieWulie15

    Hey,

    Just last week out of the blue i had gotten a really sharp pain on the lower left side of the Abdominal and it feels as though someone is punching or scratching my insides out. At first i thought the pain was caused because of the amount of caffine i took but after four days and the pain got worse, especially during the night and if i managed to fall asleep i’d wake up crying in pain and most times thats happened i end up vomitting.

    Ever since the pain started i’ve been loosing sleep, i’m quite sure i’ve lost alittle bit of weight because i cant end without throwing up.I’ve been feeling dizzy non-stop especially when i stand up i always feel as though i’ll faint. I’ve been in tears even during day in alot of pain

    I’am only 15 years old, i had gone to the doctors yesterday and he just quickly passed it on as a UTI but he didn’t even give me to to explain everything to him and i’m actually scared it could be something worse. The pain reminds me of when i had appendicitis.

    I’ve had dirrahrea and then constapaton..i’m constantly needing to pee and sometimes it’s just a ‘drip-drop’. The pain is getting unbearable that sometimes on and off it hurts to walk. I’ve even suffered severe headaches.

    My mum takes the doctors word in saying it’s just a UTI but i just have a feeling that maybe it could be something worse, hopefully i’m wrong but if someone could maybe help me out i could give my mum a good arguement into letting her take me to the Hospital.

    Thanks
    Julie.

    • Jan Modric

      Julie,

      I can’t say if you have UTI or not. I guess you’ve got antibiotics, and, if you have UTI, these should help in few days. In UTI, you would feel some burning during urination and would have frequent urges to urinate. An urinary stone stuck in the left ureter would likelly cause sharp crampy pains lasting for several minutes and then relieved.

      Lower abdominal pain, diarrhea, constipation, vomiting, headache and frequent urination can all appear in:
      – infection affecting both urinary tract and the colon
      – intestinal hernia (abdominal wall would be likely tender to touch and you would maybe feel a lump)
      – a disorder within the colon
      – endometriosis (uterine-like tissue appearing in the abdominal cavity)

      I want to say, if your problems do not arise from the urinary tract, they probably arise from the colon. If symptoms don’t get worse, try to wait few days to see if antibiotics (?) will help. If not, a gastroenterologist should know, which tests to make.

  • JulieWulie15

    Sorry the bit where it says i cant end..is meant to be i cant eat

  • JulieWulie15

    Jan,

    Thanks For Replying. The Pain Is Actually Lasting A Few Hours, Yesterday It Had Been There The Whole Day.

    I Will See If I Get Any Better With Taking The Medication My Doctor Gave Me For A Few Days, See If The Pain Goes Down.

    • Jan Modric

      Julie,

      if pain lasts for few hours (less or more) and then lessens or disappears and appears again…it may be an urinary stone causing cramps in the left ureter. It may be accompanied by infection or not. Such stones can be detected by an ultrasound, but yes, first try what the doc has prescribed.

  • Michael

    While skating the other day, I went up to do a trick and right as i jumped i felt a sharp pain in my lower left abdomen. Does this just mean i may have pulled a muscle?

    • Jan Modric

      Michael,

      a pulled muscle in the abdominal wall would be likely tender to touch.

  • Brian Thomas

    I was sick for about four days with a fever during which time i did not eat that much.

    Then i got all better and had two small meals then a big meal.

    It started as lower abdominal pain and now it is isolated to my left side where my elbow meets my side.
    It hurts when I move roll in bed and breath deeply. At times it hurts very bad and other times only when i move or breath deeply.
    I have had regular BM and do not have a fever or bloody stools or anything. I took pepto and tums and neither worked.
    Does this need attention now or should I wait>?
    Brian

    • Jan Modric

      Brian Thomas,

      a gas built in the colon could cause pain starting in the lower left abdomen and moving below the ribs. It’s possible this was related to your sickness, and if so, it should go away by itself. Try to avoid fods and drinks that can bloat you (soda, sugary foods, beans, oats..).

  • djmj

    Hello. I am a 46 yr old female at my wits end. I have had a nagging pain in my chest, left side, for nearly 3 years, and have been on pain meds just as long. The pain is in the same spot, but will sometimes radiate into my arm, side, or shoulder blade in the back. I have had every test imagineable, and nothing is ever found. I know I’m not crazy or imagining this pain. It is always there constantly. I am tired of having the pain covered up with pain meds, and just want to get the problem fixed. I can’t tell if the pain is in my lung, my trachea, or my esophagus. I just know that it hurts and is always there. Most recently, I have now developed another pain but in my lower left abdomen, ovary area, and am having issues with urination…originally, it was frequency, and now it hurts in my abdomen when I go. Was tested yesterday, but no infection present. I am beginning to wonder if whatever hurts on my upper left abdomen has now spread to lower left…please, any advice would be gratefully appreciated!!

    • Jan Modric

      djmj,

      two possible explanations (among other) for all your symptoms:
      1. Irritation of the diaphragm (main respiratory muscle) by distened colon due to gas built can trigger pain in the chest, shoulder blade, shoulder and arm. You could (or not) notice some bloating below the left rib cage. Gas built in the descendent (lower left) colon could cause pain in the lower left abdomen and distended colon could press on the bladder and irritate it (frequent urges to urinate). There rae several causes of gas built – now, if you had colonoscopy(?) and abdominal ultrasound, MRI..(?), there are food related causes to consider: fructose malabsorption, lactose intolerance, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), or even intestinal parasites and a gastroenterologist can perform appropriate tests.
      2. Abdominal/pelvic adhesions – strands of fibrous tissue pulling the diaphragm and the bladder. Adhesions can develop (even years) after abdominal surgery, in endometriosis, after pelvic inflammatory disease (usually do to infection of female organs). These adhesions could be sometimes detected by an ultrasound or MRI, but sometimes a laparoscopy is needed.

  • Disturbia

    Exactly 1 week ago as I got up from bed I felt very itchy on my left belly… at first I thought it was just rashes so I ignored it… However a few days ago I noticed that scratching does’nt help anymore since the skin surrounding it seems to be numb… And now pain starting to occur from my middle left back, and if pinch my lovehandles or press it theres a sharp tolerable pain. Most of the pain is around those areas but at times but not often, when I’m lying down I could feel a sudden stabbing pain on my lower left abdomen. the skin around my left waist stays numb. By the way the sudden stabbing pain is somewhere around the the waist where there is also numbness. What could be causing this? I will be seeing the company doctor tomorrow from where I work for a consultation. I’m just afraid that they would just give me pain killers for this. I hope I can be helped… Thank you in advance.

    • Jan Modric

      Disturbia,

      one possible cause are shingles – a reactivation of Herpes zoster virus in the spinal nerve that supplies the lower abdomen (rash can appear later).

  • maree

    Hello, it is me again…a few entries up. I really do not think that it is IBS either. I went back to the doc because i wanted to take another blood test. I thought that it would come out fine because other than the side pain i have been doing good. It came out worse than before. The first test showed the c-reactive protein as 1.7 and the last one showed 2.2mg. My gastroenteritis’s put me on Aline for the next three months and said that if i was still having problems that we should do a colonoscopy. I am ok with that but i wonder, if the inflammation has been going on for 9 or so months does it mean that it is something serious? Do i need to get a colonoscopy right away? My bowels and everything else seem to be fine. I think that the side pain is in fact gas because if i move it doesn’t hurt anymore and i tend to have some gas at the time of the pain. I have recently been diagnosed with anxiety after the tragedy and i feel as though the pain subsides when i accept that it is gas. Thank you in advance for all of your help.

    • Jan Modric

      maree,

      except colonoscopy, there are specific stool tests (certain proteins can be measured) and blood tests (certain antibodies) that can increase or decrease possibility of inflamatory bowel disease (Crohn’s disease). A gastroenterologist should be familiar with these tests (they are listed here: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17924558). If these tests are positive, than a colonoscopy can be done earlier as planned for final confirmation of a bowel inflammation. If it comes out you have Crohn’s disease, an early start of treatment has better results than a late treatment.

      For me, it is impossible to tell, what elevated CRP means in your case, but I simply cannot assure you your pain is only from gas.

  • kauigurl

    hi im a 23yr old female, years i’ve had really short sharp pain in my upper abdominal area, usually lasts 1 min, but its so sharp i can’t breathe to the point im usually gasping for air. its not gas. it happens at anytime of the day, but its not everday. yesterday morning after waking up i stood up and immediately crouched over in pain. my doctors tell me i am perfectly healthy but obviously im not, can you please help me?

    • Jan Modric

      kauigurl,

      telling where exactly (how far from the bottom of the rib cage and from the middle line) the pains occur could clear a situation a bit.

  • Dolly70070

    I have severe pain in my lower left stomach when having a bowel movement…..Not always, but sometimes…..It feels like the bowels are “twisted in a knot” After several minutes, the pain subsides…….I have also been having bladder problems the past few months…I feel as though I have to urinate right away, or I sometimes have an accident, but when I do make it to the restroom, not much comes out.

    • Jan Modric

      Dolly70070,

      frequent urination could be from the pressure of the distended (bloated?) rectum onto the bladder. It sounds like the problem is in the rectum/lower colon, so I recommend you to visit a gastroenterologist.

  • ak423

    Hello
    I have been having some MAJOR pains in my lower left pelvic/abdominal region that radiate dxown my left thigh (8t has not been any further from thigh)
    I also started with losing sensation in my bladder. Meaning when my bladder was full I just got a vague urge to urinate and then would go and sit on the toliet for up to forty minutes trying to start my urine stream and then when I did it would stop midstream and would still leave my bladder full.
    I will go back 3 months ago in march when the pelvic pain started my dr did u/s which was neg for anything serious.
    Then she did pelvic exam and when she touchded this certain spot I nearly jumped off the table in tears… she said that it was my. Bladder that she was touching and causing me so much pain and told me to go c a urologist and all my urine and blood test at this pt had been neg. So I dealt with the pain until about a month ago when these bladder symptoms started that I had mentioned bove. First with the strange loss of sensation and now with the bad cramping before urination and after urination for up to a few hours and now the constant throbbing stabbing pain in my lower pelvic area and lower abdomen that now radietes down baxk of thigh. Along with pain I get a HORRIBLW PAINFUL THROB in my vagina which seems to be bmore secluded to left side. Pain got so bad two weeks ago went to er. Urine and blood all neg and then they straight cathed me and whike she was doing I kept telling her oh my god I feel like I have to pee so bad and she said push and as I did nothing came out. So when the urine stoppedb she toke the cath out and it measured around 300 cc and then the weird part was I jumped off the table and ran to the bathroom and had the urge to urinate bad and the nurse said to me that’s impossible I just drained ur bladder. And I sat on the toliet and kept urinatitng little amounts for a few seconds and stopping and not stopping by choice it was just cutting off midstream by itself. This process occured a few mins. The dr came back in and basically since everything was neg seemed said it was all in my head and stressed related but YET HE COULD NOT TELL ME Y I KEP URINATING AFTER THE CATH?!?!!!?
    So now I have constant pain all day and cramping in lower pelvic and abdominal regiion radiating down back of thigh and wrapping into left backside. No pain no nothing on right.
    I have not seen a dr since the new radiating pain started
    My urine smells awful and sometimes I see little flecks floating in it
    Quick history
    Very prone to ovarian cysts. Including hemorragic ones. Had open stomach surgey to remove
    Have confirmed endometriosis by lapo surgery three years ago
    My current meds do make me frequently very constipated
    Gave birth 9/08
    And gave birth again in 10/09
    Both briths vaginal with no complications and full term babies
    PLEASE HELP ME I CAN’T TAKE THIS PAIN AND ALL TESTS BEING Negative! And ii feel as though I have no bladder feelings!
    Thanks a TON In advance
    24 yo healthy female 5ft 1in 145 lbs

    • Jan Modric

      ak423,

      if the urine is smelly, then surely something would be found in it: bacteria, excessive proteins, certain minerals related to urinary stones, or I don’t know what. In endometriosis, pelvic/abdominal adhesions can develop around the bladder and other organs and affect their function. Adhesions can be seen during laparoscopy (ultrasound or other imaging investigations, even MRI, can miss them).

  • ak423

    I would also like to add that I am urinating allooott but am going little at a time and can not start my stream ever and it feels al.ost like its numb coming out and I have no control over my ballder
    And no incontinence

  • fschicka05

    so when i poop i have been havin bad sharp pains in the right side of my lower stomach that lead too my vagina. the pain is soo bad i feel like im bout too cry.!! i came on my perod a week early & ive only been on it for 2 days & it aint heavy like it used too be.!! i jus really wanna know what this is.. if yu cood please tell me what it is.. i wood really appreciate it.!! thank yu.!!

    • Jan Modric

      fschicka05,

      you don’t tell how old are you. The rectum, distended from any cause (like diverticulosis) can press on the bladder and irritate it, thus triggering the urge for urination. Eventual burning at urination would speak for urinary tract infection. It can be anything in the rectum, in the bladder or anywhere in between what could cause your symptoms. One possible cause are pelvic adhesions, but a doctor (gynecologist, urologist..) could tell more. It’s possible some investigation will be needed.

  • fschicka05

    & i have been havin frequent urination & its hard for me too hold it in.!!

  • aung

    Hi,

    I have sharp pain in my left hand side just beneath the rib or around that place. Similar to “Natt on August 7th, 2009 at 12:47 am”. It is like a needle being stuck by something from outside and it last for a few seconds. It is a strong sensation. I try press or feel with my hand and I don’t feel anything. It occurs rarely but I am worried that it is a symptom of something serious.

    • Jan Modric

      aung,

      if your pains are where the spleen is (search online for somepictures) and are not related to exrcise, then you can visit a gastroenterologist who can decide if any investigation is needed. A “stitch” can appear during or after an exercise.

      Abdominal adhesions (strands of a scar like tissue), occuring (possibly years) after abdominal surgery, or pelvic inflammatory disease or endometriosis..can pull the diaphragm or nearby abdominal organ and cause such pains. Ultrasound could maybe reveal them, but a laparoscopy might be needed.

  • Drewc28

    HI everyone, im having these weird feeling in the left side of my stomach area. i dont want to say pain because its more just uncomfortable evertime i take a deep breath or move. It started after a night of drinking, and i have also been taking alot of pills because my tooth has been killin me. any ideas?

    • Jan Modric

      Drewc28,

      alcohol and painkillers can both cause constipation and bloating, which can be felt as discomfort or pain in the lower left abdomen. Try to drink enough water and eat regularly. If you continue with painkillers, constipation/discomfort can persist.

  • tlblaire2010

    Hello,
    I’m a 24yr old female. I have been having abdominal pain on my lower left side. Sometimes it gets so bad that if i walk too hard or sit down too hard it hurts. I also feel this pain in my butt. Most of the time when I have this pain, I’m bloated. I am constipated all the time. Also, I feel this same pain everytime I have sex. Can anyone tell me what’s wrong?? Thanks

    • Jan Modric

      tlblaire2010,

      pain can arise from a pinched nerve in the lumbar spine or from constipation and bloating, or from both causes. To get rid of constipation it would be good to know what causes it. Bloating may result from constipation or other causes, many of which are food related.

  • Jean29

    hi im 19 and for the last month and half i noticed that my upper abdomen is swollen a little bit and my left side im having a little of discomfort most of it on my upper left abdomen side ” i think thats the stomach im not sure”. I dont know what this is it but im getting worry now that something bad is happening inside me and i dont know.

    • Jan Modric

      Jean29,

      constipation can be a cause of both bloating and discomfort. If gas builds up in the descendent colon (left side) and in a part of the transverse colon (below the left rib cage) it may cause symptoms there. Anxiety can contribute to constipation; other causes are insufficient fluid intake, lack of exercise and dietary fiber. Certain medications can constipate.
      Foods that may relive constipation:
      http://www.healthhype.com/constipation-diet-foods-that-relieve-constipation.html
      Foods that may cause constipation:
      http://www.healthhype.com/foods-that-cause-constipation.html

      The stomach is located below the spot where ribs meet. Gas in the stomach is usually accompanied with some burping.

  • Jean29

    I forgot to mention. For the last month going to the bathroom has been pretty bad because i have to push more than normal so my stool can come out and it come out but in a short amount and im also eating a lot during the days. Could those pain im gettin on my left side could be cause im constipated?? I also has anxiety so that makes it even worse cause everything that i feel i always take it negative thinking something bad is going to happen to me.

  • Charles

    Hello,
    Constipated, sometimes (often) have diahrria. Stopped drinking energy drinks, stopped drinking coffee.
    Diet consisted of Fast food up to recently in which i’ve been cooking meat and frozen meals. Could this be due to a lack of fiber?
    yesterday I started having a dull pain in my lower left abdomin.
    Diabetes is healthy ATM.
    Seems to have started when I started drinking black coffee with 3 packets a couple months ago. Any solutions from home?

    • Jan Modric

      Charles,

      Insufficient fiber and water intake, can cause constipation. Check foods that may relieve constipation.

      Alternating constipation and diarrhea caused by meals and relieved by bowel movement may be a symptom of IBS. Here are foods to avoid in IBS described.

      I’ve also answered your question under another article here.

  • Jean29

    Thank you very much. Ima start changing my diet because i been eating a lot of fast food and trash food too. But what about my upper middle abdomen been swollen? Sometimes i feel a little burn there but not always and it feel if i was full. And im not a over weight person. Im 5’6 and weight 138.

    • Jan Modric

      Jean29,

      an middle upper (burning) pain may be from gastritis (inflammation of the stomach), and this can be caused by infection by a bacterium Helicobacter pylori. These bacteria can produce gas and cause bloating. This can result in excessive burping and heartburn (burning behind the sternum or in the throat), but not necessary. A gastroenterologist can perform a blood or breath test for H. pylori or recommend other investigations. Gastritis without infection is also possible. What you can do alone, is limit sugary and sour foods.

  • jtpayne28

    3 years ago I had rectal bleeding, I went to the ER and was told I have a bleeding ulcer. He prescribed heart burn meds and said if it gets worse to come back. It went away for a few months. When it came back about 6-7 months later, it was accompanied with pain in my lower abdomen, and my abdomen was swollen. I went to my usual DR and they sent me to a Gastro Dr to have a colonoscopy and to care for me. I was told that I have Ischemic Colitis with ulcers through out my intestines. However they could not find the cause of it and after SEVERAL tests including another colonoscopy, blood work, and camera..they still came up blank on the cause. The bleeding is occassional, my bowel movements are painful, and I either have severe diarrhea or am constipated. Now, the pain is increasing and I don’t know where or who to turn to for answers. Can someone please help?

  • jtpayne28

    The Dr said there is really nothing they can do, and that in most cases it goes away on its own.

  • painpain

    i have realy bad lower rite abdominal pain the lasts either 30 min or like this time lastd 2 days to where i just have to lay in bed tell it decides to go away ive had it for awhile now but im statn to get woryd about it warm things sooth the pain it dont make it go awya ut it soothes it to where its bearable ive had cts done a couple time and a few tests and they cant find anything but i know there something wrong or it wouldnt hurt as bad as it does what could this be????

    • Jan Modric

      painpain,

      causes of abdominal pain differ in males and females and with age…Your pain is on the right side? Usual English is easier to read. You can check personal medical history questionnaire to recall eventual other symptoms (constipation, nausea..).

  • tamika

    i have been having left sided abdominal pain for about 4 weeks now. i am 26..i workout 4-5 times weekly so i thought it was a pulled muscle. i stopped working out for 2 weeks and the pain continues..its only upon waking up in the morning and it lasts maybe 2 hours and its gone until the next morning. my tubes are tied, i am of healthy height and weight. no constipation issues. no urinary issues. what could this be?

    • Jan Modric

      tamika,

      if you have no excesive gas, and if the abdomen is not tender to touch (?), and if the pain does not spread into the leg (?), then a gastroenterologist or gynecologist can examine you and make an ultrasound investigation if necessary. One possible cause of abdominal pain after surgery (may appear years after) are abdominal/pelvic adhesions and these are not always detected by ultrasound, but sometimes only by laparoscopy.

  • SHUBHA

    HELLOW SIR/MADUM.
    my name is shubha. i’m tommorow night to under stomach & kidney is very pain. & very swepting in our body.& strengthless. what is reason.

    • Jan Modric

      SHUBHA,

      a combination of pain in the lower abdomen and in the kidney area may be from an urinary infection. Your personal doctor or urologist can order an urine test to confirm diagnosis. I recommend you to visit a doctor as soon as possible.

  • Kevin

    I have been have left sided abdominal pain for the past 3 days. I have a dull ache on the left side of my abdominals that occasionally moves to the right side and also have felt pain in my testicles on one occasion. Upon further prodding there is a tender spot on the back on my left rib cage. I also occasionally have dull chest pain. I was overhead squatting and fell 3 days ago, could it be that I’ve tourqued my body? The pain just feels odd, not normal muscular pain from overtraining.

    • Jan Modric

      Kevin,

      pains aggravated by walking or changing immediately during certain moves, lifting hands or turning around your axis would speak for stretched muscles. Pains aggravated (but not necessary immediately) by changing body positions (sitting/walking) could speak for pinched nerves (from bulging disc(s), for example) in your thoracic spine.

      If you feel pain after slight pressing upon the rib, consider a broken rib. The kidney could also be affected. If things don’t seem to improve, consider to visit an orthopedist.

  • Megsy1995

    Hello Everyone,
    For about the past 5 days I have had a sivere pain in my lower left stomach. This pain feels like it is almost in my hip and right around where my left ovarie would be. It feels like a pressure almost or like a pinching. It also feels like almost a burning pain. It hurts all of the time, even when im just sitting, but when im up and walking around it hurts more. My periods are still irreguar but i was due for my last one a little under 2 weeks ago. I have resently gotten many ultrasounds for different things but they untrasounded my whole tummy. I am only 14 years old and i dont know what to do becaus ei have had so many medical problems im scared my mom wont care or will get mad at me if i tellher about this one. What could this be and what should i do?

    • Jan Modric

      Megsy1995,

      you should tell about severe pain to your parents who can judge if you need to see a doctor. Do you have any other symptoms, like burning urination, urgency to urinate, cloudy or smelly urine, excessive gas, distended or tender abdomen, blood in the stool, unusual color of the stool, fever, nausea..? These are questions the doctor will likely ask you.

  • Megsy1995

    sorry… just adding to my last comment.. No, i do not have a chance of beeing pregnent and illjust maake a list of all my medical issues incase it will help,
    -ovarian cyst on the right side (5cm)
    -celiac disease (found out through byopsies)
    -I am getting tested for crohns desiese in a few days

    It would be helpful if you could please help 🙂 Thank you so much

  • hzbrl

    Hello Everyone,

    I am a 35 yrs old male. For the last three days I am bearing with severe back pain in lumber region and also a sharp pain started each time towards the end of urination at lower abdominal trough centre, rapidly creeping up both sides of it along & just above the pelvic line. At that time my body senses steep increase in back pain, strong enough to cramp/bend my body’s standing posture. I rush to bed, take the freestyle to pass some gases and it usually takes 10 minutes to be faded away. But a bearable amount of pain, both lower abdominal and back pain, comes back when I stand up. The urine color is alright, may be slightly opaque. Another finding is that there is no abdominal pain if i urinate in a half bending posture, however it steadily comes back if I stand erect. I am having IBS and back pain for some years (do not know if it has any relation or not).

    • Jan Modric

      hzbrl,

      it is possible that pain arises from gas built in the colon (what commonly happens in IBS). You may want to try a low-FODMAP diet that can help you get rid of some gas. The rectum and urinary bladder lie next to each other, so when the bladder is empty, it gives a bit more room for the rectum – and if this is filled with gas, it may extend and thus cause pain.

  • hzbrl

    Hi Jan,

    Many thanks for your suggestion. i got the link and will go for it.

  • Pat

    I need help! I have been to SEVERAL doctors and none can find out what is wrong with me. Since about September of ’09 I have been having several problems. I have pain in my lower left abdomen that is constant. Some days it is very bad! My adomen is swollen and there is a lump the size of my palm. My bowels are hard to move yet Im not constipated. Every few days, my stool gets runny and I find blood chunks in the stool. My colonoscopy was clear, Cat scan was clear, GYN found nothing. One doc said it was a hernia, but the test showed nothing. PLEASE HELP ME!!

    • Jan Modric

      Pat,

      hernia actually is one possibility, but CT and colonoscopy can miss it, since hernia is a dynamic disorder, which might not be present all the time. Or a part of the colon is twisted (a disorder is called volvulus). Other possibilities include intususception (search online for explanation) or volvulus (twited colon).

      The existence of the lump is an extremely important information for the doctor. You may also discuss about possibility of intestinal parasites (stool test for parasites would be needed for diagnosis). Blood in the stol is an emergeny situation, so I strongly encourage you to arrange an appointment with a reliable gastroenterologist.

  • sal62403

    every once in a while i’ll get a sharp shooting pain in lower left abdomin. It feels like a shock and lasts about as long but may be multiple. It sometimes comes on spontaneously, but everytime if I keep my legs straight and touch my toes. Any ideas?

    • Jan Modric

      sal62403,

      it is important to tell, if you feel any lump in the abdomen, or you are bloated, or the stomach is tender to touch. Besides stomach problem, a pinched nerve in the lumbar spine is possible.

  • nagbajjuri

    Hi JAN,

    I am Nagaraju of 24 aged, form last 2 days i suffering impossible pain in left side of stomach and whole stomach at less time it happens.i went hospital and they want me to take HYOSCINE N-BUTYLBROMIDE TABLETS 10MG.

    in fact i cant tolerate this pain with this tablets to be straight forward these tablets dosent show any effct on my body for last 2 days i am using.

    please can u suggest me what the problem i am facing with. what i can do to get rid of this left side stomach pain.

    please help me out of this problem.

    i am awaiting for ur responce sincerly

    • Jan Modric

      nagbajjuri,

      where exactly is the pain (below or above the belly button), is your abdomen distended, tender to touch, can you feel any lump, do you have nausea, are you constipated or have excessive gas or diarrhea, or any mucus or blood in the stool? Without knowing that, itb is hard to narrow down possible causes.

  • stars098

    ive been having pain in my lower left abdominal. It’s almost constant pains and when i put pressure it seems to hurt even more when i let go. I have gas and after each meal shortly after i have severe cramps. this has been going on for about 4-5 days and im not sure what is. do you have any idea? please!

    • Jan Modric

      stars098,

      I would need to know, what were you eating at the time when symptoms have appeared, or have you eating something different or at a different place? Fructose from fruits, artificial sweateners, like sorbitol, foods high in soluble fiber, like oatmeal or beans, dairy products (in lactose intolerance), or a food poisoning are few possible causes. If symptoms are worsening, I recommend you to see a doctor. If symptoms are improving, they may go away on their own.

  • heather24

    im 24 years old female i work out 5 days a week at least running 3 out of the 5 days. 2 miles. I eat high protien meals and have veggies and drink enough water. The past couple days my stomach has been hurting after i eat, usually in the evening. It feels like the pain travels to my spin as well the pain is mostley where my belly button is and travels up left to my ribs. its a sharp stabbing pain and im very bloated and cant take the pressure away from either end. anti acids have been working ok but the pain last for about 3 hours. i have to sleepith a heating pad. this ha been going on and off for a year but the pian has been consistant for 3 days now. anything i eat hurts my tummy. what you think it could be?

    • Jan Modric

      heather24,

      pain could be from bloating (gas built in the left part of the colon (if you think you are more bloated as you were before). Bloating can be caused by various food intolerances, like fructose malabsorption, lactose intolerance, celiac disease, by intestinal disorder, like Crohn’s disease, by intestinal parasites: You can read an article about causes of bloating and gas.

      I can’t exclude a serious abdominal disorder, though, so I recommend you to visit a gastroenterologist, who will likely want to know details of your personal mecical history (questionnaire).

  • heather24

    iv been very stressed out to add. But the pain happen last night to where i was in tears and the last thing i had was a corn tortia with some cheese and a hot sauce packet. I have been having alot of candy lately but it never made my stomach hurt this bad ever. I have eggs and lean ground turkey in the morning, coffee with sugar free vanilla and soy, i try to stay way from dairy as much as possible. Iv been having some fruit such as water melon and bananas. the pain moves up under my rib cage and feels like an air bubble. im not dizzy but some times feel like im going to throw up. i eat alot of chicken breast also and have had some spicy things the last few days? should i be concerned about anything dangerous?

  • Brit

    Hi, I’ve been having pain on my upper left side for 5 years. It started when I began working out on a daily basis, and while doing crunches my abs were really sore. So I figured at the time I should take a break and have my body recover. All the pain was gone except for the pain on my left side. The pain is there whether or not I eat, and has been occurring nonstop since. I’ve gotten multiple tests done, including CT Scan, Endoscopy, Ultrasound, X-ray, and they all came back normal. I even tried Nexium, and that didn’t work. I’m one of many people who need answers regarding this. Thank you.

    • Jan Modric

      Brit,

      what type of pain is it: constant, burning, cramping…? Try to describe where exactly do you feel pain, is it tender to (slight) touch, does it change with moving or changing position. Then, how did the pain start – suddenly or slowly, and where was it. Has your bowel habit changed since then? To recall more symptoms and circumstances, you can check this personal medical history questionnaire.

  • Brit

    The pain is a constant sore feeling. It is located under my left breast starting at the center of the ribcage, and wrapping around towards my side, and sometimes the pain is in my back. It’s not tender to the touch, but I feel the pain when I put pressure to the area, and the pain does not change when I move about. The pain started suddenly after a workout, under my left ribcage. No, my bowel habits have not changed.

    • Jan Modric

      Brit,

      pain starting suddeny and then being constant and wrapping around one side of the chest could be from a pinched nerve in the thoracic spine. An orthopedist or neurologist should be able to give you a diagnosis.

  • Brit

    Hi Jan. I apologize for taking long to respond. I forgot to mention that the doctors did in fact come to that same conclusion about it possibly being a pinched nerve. I received injections in the area of the pain. I was without pain for a day, and then it came back. I went back for more injections and after a day the pain came back again. I haven’t had any more appointments since, so it’s a very frustrating situation.

    • Jan Modric

      Brit,

      relief after the injection additionally speaks for a pinched nerve. Some imaging investigation of the spine would be needed to get an exact diagnosis. To tell you openly – there are painkiller pills, injections and possibly special exercises that may help, but if not, a surgery can solve (usually safely and permanently) the problem. You can discuss all mentioned options with a doctor. In a meantime you can find out if certain sleeping positions help, if prolonged sitting or standing aggravates the pain…

  • Brit

    Thank you so much for this information.

  • shela71

    Experiencing left side abdominal pain, can feel every movement when bowel movement is in process, extremely fatigue, not able to lose weight, gas

    • Jan Modric

      shela71,

      revealing more circumsances (how old are you, did symptoms start slowly or abruptly and when, do you have any chronic disease, are you taking some medicines, have you already had any tests, what is your diert?) could help to understand your situation better. Hypothyroidis, intestinal parasites, some sort of food intolerance, and other disorders are possible.

  • Jason

    I’m 19, and I’ve been experiencing a dull pain off and on above my left testicle.

    Sometimes it’s dull pain, other times it’s better described as simply annoying discomfort.

    I thought it was gone, until it came back today (after two days for the most part without any discomfort), and was almost completely relieved after going to the bathroom(#2) ….

    what’s going on ?

    I’m going to the doctor early next week.

    • Jan Modric

      Jason,

      a doctor can determine, is it varicocele, hydrocele…or something other.

  • chris20

    I am 40 years old. I have upper left pain, nothing severe numb, burning sensation. Sometimes it moves to the lower left side and then rarely to the lover right side. It has been going on for several months and becoming more noticable over time. Bowl movements went from regular to several times a day (but not every day)more loose type. Nothing bloody that I can tell. I have travel to many countries over the past few years include, Mexico, India, Thailand and South Africa for work. I have gotten sick in India for a day 4 years ago and got sick (flu like symptoms) in South Africa last November. I appreciate any insight.

    • Jan Modric

      chris20,

      pains on both left and rigt side and frequent stools probably arise from the colon, especially if you have frequent bowel movements. Stool test for parasites and blood could be one of the first tests – a gastroenterologist can decide which tests to do.

  • val

    i have been diagnosed with lupus – i have also been diagnosed with ibs in the way past— and recently phenomatosis intestinalias– (sp)– i have benign polyps in the stomach— i have discovered if i avoid gluten, and lactose and carbs and sugars i am not in as much pain with eating- i belch huge and i have constant diareah sp–ranging in colour — i also have noticed that my urine is extremely dark—despite the amount of water i drink -roughly 12-15 cups a day— i have no gallbladder—
    when i eat i must belch to releive the pain and naseau that i have most of the day– and i get a pain under my left side rib moving to the back — after eating anything– i have had numerous tests all seems to be fine— any suggestions- or advice would be greatly appreciated— oh i have a swollen left lymph node in my neck since march too– tired thanks

    • Jan Modric

      val,

      I suggest you to get that swollen gland checked as soon as possible. It can be cancer, to be direct. Dark urine could be from increased level of bilirubin, which can be due to obstruction of the bile flow from the liver into the intestine. So, I also suggest you to have appropriate urine tests done.

      Pneumatosis intestinalis is a radiographic term, which means there is a gas in the intestine, but it does not tell nothing about the cause. Causes of intestinal gas include: lactose intolerance, fructose malabsorption, celiac disease, Crohn’s disease and any cause of fat malabsorption (unabsorbed fats enter the colon where bacteria break them down and yield gas): blocked bile duct, liver disorder, blocked pancreatic duct or pancreatic disorder. There could be also intestinal parasites and small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO).

      Dark urine speaks for a bile duct/liver disorder. In this case, low-fat diet would help you get rid some gas. But you’ve mentioned several other food intolerances, so it would be good to know, if you have lactose intolerance, fructose malabsorption or celiac disease to know which foods to avoid. Tests for all mentioned disorders exist.

      A gastroenterologist can deal with pretty much all problems you’ve mentioned.

  • laks

    Hi Doc,

    If someone was to poke my left lower side (abdominal) it really hurts. I believe someone could knock the wind out of me if they used force just poking with thier 4 fingers. is this normal for every one or just me. I think the right side too.

    • Jan Modric

      laks,

      I’m not a doctor. Pain after knocking on both abdominal sides could be from gas built in the intestine. There are several causes of abdominal bloating and gas, and I would need to know some details, like when did the pain start, do you have any change in bowel habit, how old are you, and so on.

  • polly

    When getting up off the sofa I get sometimes get vey sharp pains in my lower ab abdomen that last a few seconds. this has started in the last few months. Is this normal? My bowels are normal and have no vomitting or other symptoms. It does not hurt if I press down on it.In the last few days I have had very mild pain in my left lower abdomen which usually occurs in the evenings and lasts a short while and is nothing that I can’t handle. Is this normal?

    • Jan Modric

      polly,

      where exactly do you feel the pain? have you ever had an abdominal/pelvic surgery or laparoscopy or any infectioninflammation in the pelvis, or a laparoscopy done? In these cases, they could be adhesions.

      But a simple bloating or constipation could cause such pain.

  • polly

    Hi I am only 21 years old. I have no other past medical history so no surgery before. The pain is usually very low down in the abdominal from getting up..not always just now and again..so do you think it is nothing to worry about? the new pain is very very light that has been occuring.

    • Jan Modric

      polly,

      I can’t say the pain is just from bloating or so. Pain is not normal, especially not sharp pain, but where is it – on the left, middle or right? Middle lower abdominal pain could arise from the bladder or uterus, left or right pain could be from ovaries or Fallopia tubes or colon…and appropriate specialist could make a diagnosis.

  • polly

    when I said new pain the one I have in evenings

  • Bstricklin

    Jan,
    Hello, I am a 30 yr old male. Recently i have been having a pain in my left abdomin area that extends and gets worse up to my left shoulder neck area. It hurts worse when I breath in, around the neck/shoulder. It doesn’t seem to be a muscle pull because I can move my neck just fine. I do feel kind of bloated and have gas, my stools are very loose and diarretic. If you can give me any advice I would appreciate it

    • Jan Modric

      Bstricklin,

      the likely explanation is that distended colon (from gas) presses upon your diaphragm from below and irritates it. This can cause refered pain in your left shoulder and neck. Common causes of bloating ad diarrhea are: food poisoning resulting in bacterial bowel infection (usually resolves within a week on its own), intestinal paraites (may last for months), lactose intolerance, fructose malabsorption, celiac disease, Crohn’s disease and other causes (you can find links to mentioned disorders in the Causes of Bloating and Gas article). epending on the cause, specific diets (like lactose-free, low-fructose…) can help, but parasites and Crohn’s disease require treatment with prescribed drugs.

  • D

    I have pain that started when I would breathe in at the lower left of the diaphram. It hurts to move. I now have pain up the left side and under my left breast (under the breast- rib area) and it hurts to breath in. If I lie on my left side it is worse. The pain is a little bit in my neck (left side) and I am getting a left side headache in my jaw and left temple. My BP is 100/59 and my pulse while sitting is 80bpm. I do have GERD and I have had some loose stools and gas. Sleeping seems uncomfortable and impossible. The back of my neck has been bothering me from stenosis and I do had two other bulging discs. Also, I have RA. I am assuming it is not my heart, but there is some pain radiating to my left arm. My left bottom ribs hurt near the liver when I turn (thus assuming it is not the heart if turning makes it worse). Any tips?

    • Jan Modric

      D,

      cervical stenosis can cause pain in the neck and arm(s), and even in face, and rheumatoid arthritis, (if thoracic spine is affected) can cause pains in the trunk. But regarding you had bowel symptoms, distended (bloated) colon could press upon the diaphragm causing pain during breathing. Pain from irritated diaphragm can also radiate up into the chest and shoulder…Another possible cause is inflammation of the lung membrane – this would cause a scratching pain during breathing…

      To me, it sound like spinal disorders + bloated colon. One thing you can do, is to find the cause of excessive gas, like gastritis caused by Helicobacter pylori infection, lactose intolerance, fructose malabsorption…

  • Christin A.

    Hello,

    I am 24 years old. Sometimes I get a pain on my left side right across from my last rib. It mainly hurts when walking around. Its a painful but I can still function. It helps if I push on it. What could this be and how can I take care of it?

    Thank you

    • Jan Modric

      Christin A.,

      do you think this may be a stitch. like it occurs during running? The pain subsides when you press on the abdominal wall? Do you feel any lump there?

      A common cause of pain below the ribs is a gas built in the colon, but I’m not sure if thisb could be relieved by pressing on the spot.

      Abdominal adhesions, endometriosis or a benign abdominal tumor could cause pain during walking. A gastroenterologist would likely propose an ultrasound of abdomen as the first investigation.

  • Evie

    Hi, Jan,

    I’m almost 20 years old and I’ve been having some abdominal pain on the left. I’ve been feeling it a bit within the last month or so, but then it would go away. But yesterday I started having pain in my left under my ribs, kind of toward more of the back side. It felt bruised, and was very tender to touch. Then today the pain has gone to my left side of my stomach, and it radiates into the front bottom, near my pelvic area (but not my pelvic area, if that makes sense) and even toward my back left side. It hurts to move.

    Just recently (in July) I was diagnosed with Essential Thrombocytosis, which is a blood disease. I’m not sure if you’re familiar, but it deals with my platelets, and I know it can cause an enlarged spleen. However, we did an ultrasound in July and nothing came up, but all during the ultrasound, it felt like my entire stomach was bruised and it hurt while the lady did it.

    I also have chest pain, and the doctor said it was nothing. They did an EKG, and nothing showed. I’m going back to the doctor this coming Friday to check on more of that and on why the ultrasound hurt so bad. Maybe these things are related? I’m just a little worried because of the pain.

    And I don’t think it could be a muscle because I don’t do a lot physically, or I haven’t lately anyway, dealing with my side.

    Thank you for any help.

    Evie

    • Jan Modric

      Evie,

      in essential thrombocytosis, thrombosis can develop – tis can reduce the blood flow through certain veins and arteries in the abdomen and lungs, and could cause ischemia (lack of oxygen delivery) in the intestine or abdominal wall and in lungs – this can cause pains. Pain on the left side could be from spleen – no matter if spleen is enlarged or not.

      My advice – consider to visit the doctor earlier as you planned and mention the possibility of thrombosis – a blood test can show, if you need any treatment. Maybe go to the doctor now to prevent complications you may regret…

  • Evie

    Also, I don’t have any problems going to the bathroom.

  • Evie

    Thank you, Jan! I’ve called, but they can’t get me in any earlier than Friday, but I’ll keep checking in to see.

    Thank you again,

    Evie

  • hpool.2011

    this morning i woke up and i was having some pain on the lower left side of my abdomon and then i subsided so i just ignored it then this afternoon it came back so i tried some icy hot because i thought it may be just some sore muscles and not too long after puttin that on the pain subsided then after about an hour it came back in full force and i tired the icy hot again but it literally felt like it was burning me and it has been this terrible on and off pains ever since then and i dont know what it is or what i need to do.. can you help me figure out what is wrong?

    • Jan Modric

      hpool.2011,

      where exactly is te pain, is it tender to touch, does it change with moving, any skin rash, changed bowel habit?

  • Magic8521

    Hi I am 25 and have been having sharp pains as well as discoloration on my right side. For the past two years Ive also been getting nose bleeds when I drink. What do these symptoms lead you to think is wrong with me?

    • Jan Modric

      Magic8521,

      where exactly do you feel abdominal pain and where the discoloration is? Below the ribs, near the belly button? How much alcohol do you drink?

  • Courtney from Small Town, PA

    Every once in a while I have a sharp pain on my left side right below my breast. I have difficulty taking a full breath when this happens and it only last for a few seconds but now it is becomming more frequent. What do you think the issue is?

    • Jan Modric

      Courtney,

      it could be something pressing to the diaphragm from the abdominal side, like distended colon from a temporary gas built. Try to observe is this happens after certain foods (not necessary right after a meal, it can be hours later).

  • shavontacsosweet1

    im 18 yrs.old and i been having pain on my left middle side f m stomach and i have gas alot but nothing more and when i stretch it hurts i dont knw whats wrong with me can someone please help….

    • Jan Modric

      shavontacsosweet1,

      pain can be from abdominal distension from gas, now the question is from where gas comes from. Common causes of bloating and gas include diet with a lot of soluble fiber, lactose intolerance, fructose malabsorption, intestinal parasites, celiac disease. Think if dairy or fruits worsen the gas, and if yes, you can have an lactose-free or low-fructose diet trial lasting for few days each. If this does not help, you can visit a gastroenterologist and discuss about a stool test for intestinal parasites.

  • SEAN

    Hi, i’m getting pain in my left abdomin that traveling upto the left shoulder. I mainly get the pain when i take a deep breath. i had a colonic last week, could this have caused it?
    its been about a week now and im wondering if there is anything i can do to stop it? Thanks

    • Jan Modric

      SEAN,

      if with “colonic” you mean colonoscopy, yes, this could cause the pain in the left abdomen and shoulder. The exact cause can be insuflated gas trapped in the transverse colon. The pain should slowly go away on its own, and if not, speak with a gastroenterologist.

  • adrich0071

    im 40 yr old male. i have stomach pain in right side (approx 2 inches from my naval).just recently, its gone but the pain is now in my left side (upper side). Its not that really painful but i am worried that someday it will get worst. just a little pain esp when you press it.

    • Jan Modric

      adrich0071,

      if tenderness is limited to a small area (1-2 inches), it may be an intestinal hernia. A common cause of appearing/disappearing pain is a gas built in the intestine.

  • kats65

    I am a 45 yr old female.
    Since May I have had numerous left side abdominal pains. I had been on a popcorn binge so I thought it might be divertculosis.
    It first started as a lower left abdominal pain. Sharp but not serious and it would come and go.
    I went the the emergency after 3 weeks of pain and they did blood tests, all normal.
    I then went for an endovaginal ultrasound and that was normal. A year before I had had an abdominal and pelvic area ultrasound and that had been normal. The pain then stopped and moved to my mid left abdomen to what I describe as a stitch, off and on. I went for a colonoscopy and that was also normal. My doctor says all this is probably irritable bowels…
    The pain shortly after the colonoscopy moved from my mid abdomen to upper left under my ribs.
    This has since come and gone a couple of times.
    My doctor also ran the blood tests for the pancreas(because I was panicked) and that came back normal.
    The pain went away for about a month and coincidently (or not?) three days (72hrs) after trying popcorn again I have pain in my upper left abdomen below my ribs again, this accompanied with constipation.
    Any ideas and should I be worried?

    • Jan Modric

      kats65,

      it can be IBS, triggered by popcorn and maybe some other foods (maybe those high in insoluble fiber). In IBS cramps appear in the colon and this may explain pain in the lower left abdomen moving toward the ribs. Pain below the ribs was likely triggered by insuflated air during a colonoscopy. If symptoms persist, you may try some foods high in soluble fiber, like oatmeal in the mornings. This may initially even worsen your symptoms, since soluble fiber yield some gas. This could help you if you are prone to get constipated.

      You have quite some tests done, all negative, so the only other condition I can think about are abdominal adhesions, mainly occuring (days to years) after abdominal surgery or a bowel inflammation..but IBS seems to be much more likely, so I strongly recommend you to think about the diet, before undergoing any further investigation. You may read about foods to avoid in IBS (which may be relevant to you or not, but you can try).

  • Nina1988

    Hi,I am a 21 years old female,I had abdominal pain (crampes), discomfort, floating, annoying gases, diarrhea and sometimes constipation since 6 years ago. I am not sure, but I think these symptoms started after taking 2 or more courses of antibiotics to treat acne since 6 years ago and after finishing these courses I noticed the floating and the rest of the symptoms started(may or may not be related, just for your information).
    Last year I couldn’t tolerate these symptoms anymore especially the gases that I couldn’t even be able to sit still at my college lectures, so T went to check what’s wrong. The doctor asked for blood tests, urine, stool, abdominal ultrasound, and gastroscopy, and they all were negative.Then, the doctor suggested that it was IBS and gave me some small green pills to relieve the floating and proton pump inhibitor capsules ( yes, I forgot to mention that gastroscopy showed minor reflux, which was nothing to worry about in his opinion). Anyway, months went by and still on the same condition of abdominal dicomfort(I stopped the ttt when I didn’t see any improvement, just took them for 3 months) till nearly the beginning of this August. I start having extreme crampes in my left lower and sometimes upper abdominal area and it usually accompany bowel movement, sometimes before and sometimes after passing stool and last for approximately half an hour. In addition the floating appear more in the left side and it really annoy me and the dicomfort too makes me nervous. I started to feel like when I ate too much that the food will come out from my throat even when sitting (I don’t know if the reflux can worsen because before wasn’t big issue). My concern is why this severe crampes and floating and gases and can I get rid of them?
    Please help, and many thanks.

    • Jan Modric

      Nina1988,

      antibiotics could trigger IBS. Here’s an article about foods to avoid in IBS. If you’re prone to constipation, oatmeal in the morning might help (unless it causes even more gas). Antibiotics can also cause overgrowth of Clostridium difficile bacteria in the colon. Stool test for Cl-diff toxin would confirm/exclude that. If you have lactose intolerance, lactose-free diet would help. In fructose malabsorption (quite often), low-fructose diet would help. I recommend you to have few days lasting diet trials for each, to see if it helps. This article covers additional causes of bloating and gas.

      Another possible cause of left side abd. pain and gas could be diverticulosis (Dx is by lower GI with barium enema or by colonoscopy).

  • kats65

    Thank you Jan for answering so quickly.I cannot tell you when you feel panicked what runs through your mind, in my case I was worried about pancreatic cancer, you hear so much about this lately.
    I forgot to tell you the most recent test I had done was a barium swallow upper GI with a small intestine follow through, this too was negative.
    I had a recent flare up of pain under my left ribs again, it stayed for 6 days then it moved to my side and lower left abdomen. I will take your advice and try soluble fiber and let you know how it goes. In the meantime if you think of anything else…Thanks again.

    • Jan Modric

      kats65,

      if soluble fiber doesn’t work, you may try a low-FODMAP diet mentioned in my previous comment. That diet is basically composed from a low-fructose and lactose-free diet, so you can try them separately, 3-4 days each, to see if it helps. If pancreatic cancer was the cause of bloating, you would probably also have white diarrhea (from unabsorbed fat in the stool).

  • tonia

    ive beeen having pain in my lower back and in front lower left overies! what can it be

    • Jan Modric

      tonia,

      if you think they are ovaries, I recommend you to visit your gynecologist, who can perform apropriate investigations, like ultrasound of the pelvis.

  • Michael

    i have a sharp pain in my lower abdomin area, on the left side,by my waste line, and it hurts to touch.(it’s internal) it hurts with every movement i make. i dont know what organ would be there, i just know it hurts. yesterday i thought it was just constipatiopn or something but but now its painfullto even move around normally. can you tell me what you think and you reccomend i do about it.

    • Jan Modric

      Michael,

      constipation can cause sharp painful cramps in the colon. Bloating, related to constipation or not, may also cause pain triggered by a slight touch or movement. You’re probably aware that stretched or injured abdominal wall muscles may cause pain triggered by slight touch or movement. The next possibility is an intestinal hernia in which a lump would be likely felt. In men it is not very likely that other disorders of internal organs (like a colonic ulcer or cancer) themselves would cause tenderness of the left abdomen, except if they result in constipation and bloating.

      So, first, if you think you are constipated, you may check which foods may cause and relieve constipation.

  • april_1133

    i have a pain on my lower Left Side Abdominal. i can feel a lump and i noticed this after having my child 10 months ago the lump and pain is inbetween my left hip and bellybutton when i push this in its very painful . and the pain can sometimes go rite across 2 the right side of my abdominal. im to worried to go to my doctors.

    • Jan Modric

      april_1133,

      this could be an intestinal hernia, for example. It is very unlikely to be a cancer, since abdominal cancers do not likely create bumps that would be felt from the outside. I recommend you to visit a gastroenterologist.

  • joe

    hi this site doesnt mention hiatal hernia pain in left side of stomache it is also very common?

    • Jan Modric

      joe,

      hiatus hernia by itself often does not cause any symptoms at all, and when it does these usually appear in the chest and throat (heartburn) or in the upper middle abdomen.

  • charliescaredashell

    hello, i’ve had a pain for almost 2 years i want to say now. i first noticed it when i would drive in a car for a long time. its an aching pain right under my left armpit and sometimes i can feel it like right under the bottom left of ribcage. i also feel like a tightness when i tense my shoulder down and up. lately ive noticed i cant sleep with my arms above my head anymore or they’ll fall asleep / go numb and i also noticed i have really poor circulation in my legs. im really scared and dont want to get it anyhting checked out cause im so scared its something serious. please someone fill me in on what could be going on. thanks

    • Jan Modric

      charliescaredashell,

      your symptoms may speak for an abdominal problem or neurological problem, for example. In general health disorders can be treated easier and better when treatment starts soon, so I encourage you to visit your doctor, who can examine you and tell what eventual next steps are needed.

  • charliescaredashell

    oh ya forgot to mention ive had acid reflux disease since i was 16 and im 23 now.

  • Danica012

    I’m a 19 year old female and I have pains that seem to be directly under my boob. It’s a very sharp pain and it causes me to have trouble breathing. So bad that I have to sit down, push against it and take very small breaths. They last about half a minute to a full minute. Happens maybe once a week.. Any idea what this is?

    • Jan Modric

      Danica012,

      is the pain you’ve described in the chest (under the ribs) or in the abdomen (below the ribs)?

  • fiona78

    Hi Jan,

    You are obviously very dedicated to helping ppl seeing all the answers to questions you’ve posted here. I hope you can advise me too.
    I’m a 32 yr old woman. I’ve been experiencing a range of symptoms for the last year. They mostly relate to the mid left abdomen area. I’ve had a persistent dull ache/pain for a year or more, sometimes it hurts more noticeably like a sharp momentary pain but the dull ache never goes. It does not hurt to touch but skin often itches at the site of the pain (loscalised itch not all over body) which is quite strange.
    I usually have feeling of fullness and bloating in the abdomen.
    I had a pelvic ultrasound recently for gynaecological probs but it was fine. For the last 6-8 months I’ve had unusually heavy menstruation with intense cramping/shooting pains like contractions when menstruating only.
    I am incredibly fatigued and worn out and find usual activities like cycling to work really exhaust me unlike before.
    My urine appears dark but this could be due to lack of water / vitamin c supplements.
    I was wondering if these issues might be related? Or perhaps they’re separate! I’ve been feeling mild-moderately nauseated as well as very fatigued for the past year but not vomiting or urge to vomit.

    My GP diagnosed with IBS and thinks the left sided pain is IBS related but this has not been confirmed by any test. I had an endoscopy which was basically normal just a bit of inflammation. Next month I’m due a colonoscopy. I don’t feel my GP is taking me seriously but I really don’t feel like myself at all these days.
    Any ideas? Questions?
    Big thank you,
    Fiona

    • Jan Modric

      fiona78,

      if “dark urine” is amber, brownish, it could be from excessive excretion of bilirubin. This can be easily checked by an urine test. Blood test would show elevated bilirubin and liver enzymes. The cause could be a liver, gallbladder or bile duct disorder. In these cases, your stool would be liklely pale (gray) due to less bile or/and having bright white patches from unabsorbed fats. Bloating and pain on the left side would be therefore from gas produced during bacterial breakdown of unabsorbed fats, and itch would be from bile salts entering the skin. Drinking less water or taking vitamins can cause “more yellow”, I mean more dense color, but not actually *dark* color.

      Intestinal parasites could also cause pretty much all symptoms you’ve mentioned. Dx is made by a stool test for parasites.

      In IBS, your large bowel get irritated by certain foods and/or stress. Symptoms (diarrhea or constipation) typically appear shortly after the meal and disappear with a bowel movement. There is no nausea and fatigue in IBS, so this diagnosis does not sound very likely to me.

      I encourage you to speak with your gastroenterologist about urine test for bilirubin, stool test for parasites, and blood test for bilirubin and liver enzymes. But you could have a Crohn’s disease – still some stool and blood tests exist that can tell how much the Crohn’s disease is likely; the final diagnosis is usually made by histologic examination of a sample of the colonic mucosa taken during colonoscopy, though. My point is, if it comes out you have intestinal parasites, for example, you might not need a colonoscopy…

      Heavy menstruation may be related with abovementioned disorders or could be a separate problem, but since you have obvious abdominal problems, these could be checked first.

      You can check this personal medical history questionnaire to see if you can recall any other symptom or circumstance.

  • fiona78

    Thanks so much Jan,

    I’m saving your reply to my hard disk so I remember to ask the gastroenterologist for the tests you list here.
    I’ll do the questionnaire over the weekend and let you know if any other symptoms come up. I’ve got so used to feeling ill that sometimes I can’t remember if it’s normal or a symptom!
    I need to start taking myself more seriously I think.
    A part of me is worried about cancer as I had some abnormal cervical smears in the past but the last one came back clear so I guess I’m ok but I feel so exhausted and sick that I’m still worried.
    Thank you,
    Fiona

  • Juliajoy

    Hi there,
    On Tuesday night ( today is saturday) I started feeling pain in my stomach. I hadn’t eaten much and thought it was caused by hunger pains and would go away the next day. WEdnesday, the pain is still there… try to eat well during the day… but pain is still there kind of hidden underneath my food. THursday, I am noticing the pain is more like a direct spot in my lower abdomin, it hurts to walk, laugh, sneeze and and in some positions that i sleep in… go to bed early holding onto my stomach, hoping it will be gone the next morning. Friday… still there, so off i go to the doctor. I told him my symptoms which also included sudden loss of colour in my face, goosebumps and the hair on my arms to stand on end. My toilet activity is very minimal, no diarrhea and not many normal stools. HE gives me enemas to put up my rectum to release constipation and maybe an infection in my large intestine… they didn’t seem to work much, so today i did a salt water flush and have a lot of diarrhea, which i will hope clean out my system!!
    however i get the feeling this problem goes deeper, as the pain feels too specific, like a big ball is just stuck in my lower left side.

    I am 25, pretty fit and healthy. However in the past 2-3 week my diest changed drastically. I start work at 5:30 in the afternoon until 12:30 at night.. in this time, I do not eat anything, besides maybe a passing few pieces of bread. So i have gotten used to one big meal a day for lunch , besides a small breakfast… so i know my stomach is not used to this. but the sudden pain, just seems a little too big of a reaction.

    any help????

    • Jan Modric

      Juliajoy,

      I answered you here.

  • Michael

    Good Afternoon,

    I am 33yrs old, male. I smoke around half pack of cigerettes a day during week. On weekend maybe a 1/4 pack a day. I have not been to a Doctor as of yet, due to unsure where to begin. I moved to this area back in january, and have not had a need to aquire a regular family doctor till this point. So I am looking for a correct path of a specialist type to start with.

    My issues arrived about a week ago. I have left rib cage pain. Imediately under my left chest muscle, on the rib cage, to about 4inches down. That area radiates to my back with the same type of pain. On my back, it radiates up to the middle of my left shoulder blade. Also my ribs on my left side feel how a bruised rib would feel. Though I have not been hit, nor have I ran into anything accidently to cause this pain. At times on my back sides, I can feel my kidneys feeling abnormal. Adnormal in the sense of very minor discomfort compared to prior to date specified.

    My “pain” feels more so like a tingling, sensation on my skin, similar to what you would feel if your hand fell asleep. Though slightly painful when the skin is touched or pressed against anywhere with in the areas mentioned. Though with that, it feels as if its between my ribs, same goes for the pain in the back. Sometimes, not often, when I move a certain way, a very sharp pain will reveal itself for a second or two. Today I noticed on the left side back corner area of my neck feels tingly as mentioned in the above. Not the entire neck left side corner, but from where neck connects to shoulder muscle to about 1.5 inches up on the left side back corner of the neck.

    I can take deep breaths, on exhale I can feel very very slight discomfort in my left back area. I drink pleanty of water daily, eat normally. See no differences in pain with eating or drinking more or less. I do notice, with in a few minutes after smoking a half of a cigerette. The pain increases for a few moments, then reverts into not so painful pain.

    Any advice on what my issue is, or on which doctor type / specialist I should seek, would be helpful.

    Thank your for your time.

    • Jan Modric

      Michael,

      the skin that is tingling, numb and tender even to a slight *touch* (not pressure) on the front and back, could be from shingles (Herpes zoster virus reactivation) affecting one of the spinal nerves arising from the spine and traveling around the chest horizontally. In this case, an itchy or burning rash may appear later on the skin along the nerve.

      On the other hand, a “sharp pain” could speak for a pinched spinal nerve in the lower neck or upper chest part of the spine. A bulging/herniated spinal disc is a common cause.

      It is a neurologist who can deal with both of above conditions.

      I can’t exclude any kidney disorder, only I’m not sure if this could cause a sharp pain triggered by moving.

  • inpain86

    Hi I am a 24 year old girl. I have had stomach pains for approx the last 3-4 years. They come and go but mainly in the evening to nightime. When the pains come it feels like my stomach is going to explode, my stomach bloats right out and i feel like i need to pass wind or more but nothing happens. I have noticed lately the pains have become more excrutiating, i can’t breathe, i get hot and cold flushes and the pain is lasting longer. (It comes in waves, eg.. moderate to really intense, then it will kind of fade away for a while, the only way i find myself coping at the moment is curling up in bed with absolute silence any noise or movement just makes the pains worse. And most recently I have been passing blood when i go to the toilet

    • Jan Modric

      inpain86,

      pain is probably from bloating, this is from gas, and this may be caused by various conditions. Blood in the stool could be “only” from hemorrhoids (caused by straining at bowel movement?) or from intestinal parasites, or bowel inflammation, like Crohn’s disease. I strongly recommend you to visit a gastroenterologist to get a diagnosis as soon as possible. In meantime, to prevent gas built in your stomach, I recommend you to avoid sugary foods, including fruits and fruit juices, carbonated drinks, alcohol, and foods high in *soluble* fiber like oatmeal and beans.

  • tlm

    Hi I really hope u can help as im getting quite depressed.
    Basically i have had ibs for years and in April I had a bad bought which left me in bed for a few days but as usual the attack passed, the cramps went and i was ok. Within 2 weeks i got severe cramps on the left hand side under my breast area that would come and go sometimes every few minutes sometimes with hours inbetween.Doc referred me for ultrasound, blood tests, xray and xray with contrast all of which were normal, i have been referred to see a specialist but am still waiting for my appointment! I was prescribed peppermint oil capsules and buscopan neither helped. I went to see a private nutritionist who found food allergies and said that my large intestine, colon, thyroid and gallbladder were stressed!!! I was told to take spirulina and chromium and vitamin k as well as blackcrrant oil capsules. I have taken these with a little relief. I though i had turned the corner las week when the cramps stopped but i was still left with a constant weird hard feeling that was there all the time. Last weekend the cramps came back again more frequet this time. I feel quite nauseus when they cramp with some back pain and a feeling of someone squeezing their hand round my side. I just feel my quality of life is deteoriating fast i dont feel like going anywhere of fear for the cramps again.
    Ive googled so many things and have started to scare myself to be honest. Please help! I have recently started talking calms homeopathy tablets to see if they help but nothing as yet. Any suggestions would be great thanks

    • Jan Modric

      tlm,

      in general, would you say these symptoms are different than those you were used to during IBS. Any change in stool habit or color, fever, muscle weakness, tiredness or other symptoms you would call it malaise? Have you ever had any abdominal surgery? Any pain on the right side (below the rib cage)?

      In IBS, there is usually no nausea, and not often so much pain as you’ve described. Have you changed the diet recently or were under stress? Certain foods could irritate you – have you ever tried low-fructose diet or low-FODMAP diet?

      Nausea and squeezing usually arise from cramps in a hollow muscular organ – in the upper left abdomen this would be the transverse colon (all te problems could arise simply from gas built in the colon – causes of excesive gas) and spleen. Do you think the “hard feeling” is from abdominal distension? When a kidney or ureter are affected (urinary stones..) some urine test is likely positive.

      In case, the cause is irritation by some food, above mentioned diet trials for few days could help you.

  • Colettaban

    Hi, I am a 17 year old female and weigh about 120 pounds. For the past two or three weeks I have noticed a cramp like pain (as if i was running) under my left ribs. It is about 3 or four inches below my breast. I first experienced it when walking one of my dogs and it felt terrible, like I didn’t want to walk anymore. I thought it was just a bad cramp from walking, but now I have noticed it nearly everytime I walk or run. It only comes as dull pain now and is tollerable. I have also had a lot of gas. I have had previous problems with gas also where i had very bad pains on my left side next to my hip, but that comes less often now. Does anyone know what may be going on? Also I have no other history of medical issues and have not seen a doctore recently about this. Thank you 🙂

    • Jan Modric

      Colettaban,

      one possible cause of pain below the left rib cage plus excessive gas is – gas built in the colon (where it runs below the ribs). There are several possible causes of excessive gas, two common are fructose malabsorption and lactose intolerance. A low-FODMAP diet would help in both in few days.

  • Colettaban

    also…it does not hurt when i breath, eat, or put pressure on it. Their is not yellowing or brusing of the skin that i have noticed…thank you!

  • tlm

    Hi
    Yes The symptoms are different from ibs as my ibs symptoms are usually in the middle of my abdomen and lower down. Examinations and xrays have shown my colon to be slightly distended. The squeezing feeling is there all the time then i get hit by a cramp which makes me feel quite sick.
    I have not changed my diet apart from cutting out some of the foods which i was intolarant to, this has helped a lot with regards to stools as i used to get a lot of diarrohea befor ei cut out mushrooms and chicken and eggs. I wouldnt say i have a change in stools but it doesnt take much to upset my stomach.
    I was under stress at the time it started i was in the final year of my degree therefore i thought now that it was all done i would feel better?????? That was in June 2010!!!!
    Its just depressing as i feel yuck all the time. I have a bit of muscular aching round my back and side. I have had an xray with contarst on my kidneys and a kidney xray which showed nothing. As I said I am still waiting to see a specialist (been 4 monnths now) my doctor wanted me to have a colonoscopy to rule out anything more serious. I am at my wits end with it all to be honest and just want to be well again. If it was excessive gas how would i feel? The feeling that is there all the time feels like something poking out of my stomach but theres nothing there if this makes sense.
    Thank you so much for your reply

    • Jan Modric

      tlm,

      gas makes small or large intestine more distended. This can result in distended abdomen, which would be hard and tender when pressing on it, and in flatulence. But even a small amount of gas built up in the left part of the transverse colon (running below the left rib cage) could cause pain. This is called splenic flexure syndrome (splenic flexure being a part of the affected colon). It is considered as a form of IBS…only that nausea, by a definition, is not a part of IBS. Anyway, fructose malabsorption or lactose intolerance, for example could also cause such symptoms. A low-fructose diet or lactose free diet, or a combination of both (a low-FODMAP diet) could help in few days.

  • Cari

    Hi
    I have been having pain on the left side of my abdomen and back too on the left side since the last one month. The pain is from left mid to lower sometimes.
    I had gastritis , and duodenal erosions and acid reflux 4 months ago and ws treated with Nexium and my reflux is ok, and hopefully the gastrits and erosions have healed.

    The pain that i am getting comes on in the mornings imediately after eating and lasts the whole day until 3 hours after eating at night, in morning on awakening from sleep its not there.

    I do get loose stools some days and formed stools somedays , this has been going on for sometime.

    I have done an ultrasound, colonscopy, ctscan. Only thing it shows is gallbladder distended and nothing else.

    Please help the pain is getting to me.

    • Jan Modric

      Cari,

      one possible cause could be IBS triggered by medications you’ve taken. A low-FODMAP diet could help you in this case.

      Would you say, your lower abdomen is distended and you have excessive gas? Are your stools pale (gray) or whitish? In this case, the pain could be from fat malabsorption due to a gallbladder/bile duct disorder.

  • tlm

    thanks for your reply jan, i am going to try the FODMAP and see what happens.
    Can i just ask something else:
    1. would trapped gas cause these feelings for this long? (4 months approx).and what would be the traetment for this?
    2. Would stress symptoms last this long too?

    I so want to get to the bottom of this so any sort of advice or things to try is a plus.Thanks again x

    • Jan Modric

      tlm,

      yes, trapped gas could cause chronic irritation of the colon and therefore pain, and so could stress. The condition is called a splenic flexure syndrome and it is not necessary always caused by trapped gas, but possibly just from cramps in the colonic wall below the right ribs.

      Other causes of pain under/below the left rib cage.

  • Cari

    Thanks for the reply Jan.
    Lower abdomen is not distended. My stools are regular in color only thing is now there is a lot of froth in the stools, not mucous. I had taken ampicillin for a throat infection and that cause me to get the frothy stools so i thought so I took a course of metrodinazole three weeks ago and the froth went away for 14 days or so but its come back now. Also stools do not sink but float ??

    • Jan Modric

      Cari,

      one hypothesis which connects all your symptoms is:

      Distended galbladder can be from a blockage of the bile duct (from a trapped gallstone, or inflammation..). This would prevent bile flow from the liver and gallbladder into the small intestine and would cause malabsorption of fats – unabsorbed fats would then travel toward the colon, where normal intestinal bacteria would break them down into gas (bloating and lower left abdominal pain) and certain irritating substances (diarrhea). Excreted fats in the stool would make stool frothy, floating, smelly and sticky (and, if lot of fats, whitish). A positive stool test for fats would confirm this hypothesis.

  • tlm

    sorry to be a pain but what would the treatment be for this condition if it is what it is?

    • Jan Modric

      tlm,

      no pain. In splenic flexure syndrome caused by trapped gas, a low-FODMAP diet (that yields less gas) could help (link in my previous comment) – some improvement might occur within a week…You can start a diet diary, write down what you eat, and which foods aggravate or relieve your symptoms.

      If this doesn’t work, you might try a gluten-free diwt for some days.

      If nothing helps, and pain becomes worse go to the doctor. There could be something physical in the colon what would prevent gas release, like polyps or adhesions (these mostly appear after surgery or some sort of bowel inflammation or infection within the abdomen). Colonic cancer is rare before 50 years of age. There could be also something wrong with the spleen.

  • Danica012

    I had the pain in my ribs right under my chest. Hope this helps!

    • Jan Modric

      Danica012,

      if the pain is *below* the rib cage or under the lower ribs, so in the abdominal cavity, it may arise from the colon, irritated by certain foods (gas built). You can try to find out if it is caused by certain foods. Here’s a low-FODMAP diet from which you can see which foods are often problematic. I can’t exclude kidney stones or other disorders from your description, though.

  • mpt03

    I had a sharp pain on my left abdominal side one yesterday and then later a few thobbin spasm like pains very low almost at my thigh but then today it became more constant with a smaller throb then on and off stabbing spasm pain almost by my thigh and it has happened most of today, I am a menopausal woman,

    • Jan Modric

      mpt03,

      on possible cause of spasms in the lower abdomen that radiate to the thigh are urinary stones in the ureter. In this case you might (necessary) feel some discomfort during urination. Any process in the colon/rectum would likely cause a change in bowel movements. Intestinal hernia would be likely tender to touch and a lump would be likely felt when pressing uppon the affected area. The third possible cause is an ovarioan/Fallopian tube disorder. Your personal doctor may narrow down possible causes better after examining you.

  • rose

    hi jan, this page has been very helpfull thank you

    I am a 28yr old female and have had stabbing pelvic pain on my left side near where my overy is, for about four years

    I have been treated for PID, as a smear found some infected cells (antibiotics for months, as im immune to most)

    IBS, I eat real well now and

    endometrosis, not on the pill anymore as it made me react badly to sunlight.

    the doctors have reciently found a small linguinal hernia in the spot i get pain,
    the stabing pain has gotten worse in the last week, and is now spreading down my left leg would a linguinal cause this?

    • Jan Modric

      rose,

      yes, an inguinal hernia can cause pain that spreads down the leg. A lump could be (not always) felt in the line that divides the leg and abdomen and the area would be likely tender to touch or pressure.

  • Gary R.

    Hi. I am 64 and in generally good health, 6 feet 2 inches and 180 pounds. About a year ago, I began getting a dull pain on my left side at the base of the rib cage. The pain is not always in the exact same spot and often the ache would appear to be around the back-side of the rib cage about halfway between my lower left-most ribs and my spine. I only feel the pain when I am sitting such as at the computer, driving the car, sitting in bed, or sitting on an airplane. Even then, I may experience the pain 30-60 percent of the time. The pain immediately goes away if I lean far forward, stand up or lay down. I feel no pain or soreness when I poke around where the pain appears to be coming from. I work out about 4 times a week and have contorted in all directions to see if I can, at will, cause the pain to appear but I cannot. The pain is not acute but definitely is annoying and uncomfortable. I have annual checkups and there have been no problems showing up in my urine or blood workups. I have experimented with diet restrictions for several months in case it was diverticulitis—but no change. I recently went to my physician and he sent me to a neurologist who did a bunch of tests (including an MRI) thinking that it could be triggered from a nerve in my spine—my general physician thought it was lumbar ridicularosis(sp?). The neurologist ruled out nerve causes and recommended I see a gastroenterologist. The earliest I could get an appointment is in a month. Any ideas what this might be? I have reasonably good bowel movement. Thank you for providing this service.

    • Jan Modric

      Gary R.,

      so the pain is in the *front* but can go halfway around toward your spine? And, it occurs only when you sit, but not always? How did pain apear: suddenly, slowly? My thoughts:
      – a pinched nerve in the thoracic spine. A small disorder can cause a lot of symptoms, I mean, if you rule out all other possible causes, someone could re-check that MRI…
      – a pinched muscle: one of the ribs interfering with a related muscle.
      – a process in the lower rib(s) (Dx: ultrasound).
      – gas built in the transverse colon, not necessary a lot of gas, and not necessary causing obvious bowel problems….can cause a splenic flexure syndrome (splenic flexure being a part of the colon near the spleen). This is sometimes considered as a form of irritable bowel syndrome, and a low-FODMAP diet could possibly help.
      – enlarged spleen or other spleen disorder, which should be seen on the abdominal MRI. Spleen is on the side, slightly before the vertical line that goes down from the armpit.
      – an adhesion – a strand of fibrous tissue connecting the colon and diaphragm. The cause of such adhesion is usually an abdominal surgery or inflammation of the bowel, so not sure how likely this may be. There could be some benign tumor under the diaphragm pulling or pushing adjacent organs. Not necesarily felt from the outside, but any imaging investigation (like abdominal ultrasound) should detect it.

      What you can try alone, is the low-FODMAP diet, and observing if pain ever radiates toward the chest or left shoulder (this would speak for a process under the diaphragm).

  • matt s

    hi. I’m a 20 year old male and i noticed a somewhat sharp pain on my left side of my abdomen. Its hard to pinpoint exactly where the pain seems to come from but it is specific to my left side. This morning i had some upper back pain too but that had subsided by noon. The pain is not constant and really only affects me when i take deep breathes and when i move around. As long as i am stationary or only slightly moving the pain isn’t really even noticeable. However when i move around more the pain becomes more noticeable presumably because my breathing naturally becomes heavier. Up until this point i had thought it was just a strained muscle or something in my side but i’ve tried a variety of stretches to that area and nothing works which leads me to believe that it is something internal. Any ideas or suggestions would be greatly helpful. If the pain doesn’t go away by friday I’ll most likely be visiting the ER.

    • Jan Modric

      matt s,

      is there any area that is tender to touch or pressure? When and how (suddenly, slowly) did the pain start? Could it be from excercise or injury? Stretched muscle or broken rib would be likely tender to touch/pressure. Pain aggravated by breathing and moving around, and radiating into the back could be from bloated colon that irritates the diaphragm, or enlarged spleen, for example.

  • matt s

    Jan M

    Nothing is particularity tender to the touch on my entire left side. Since this is day 2 to the pain i felt doesn’t seem as constant as it was yesterday although its definitely still there. the pain yesterday started a bit suddenly although i did many jumping jacks and walked to class to elevate my heart rate and nothing worsened which led me to believe it wasn’t my heart. Also the pain couldn’t be from exercise or injury because i don’t usually do much during the week because of classes. i did notice that i haven’t had a bowel movement over the past day and i half which isn’t too unnatural and i have been able to pass gas fine. thank you for responding to my previous post as I’m a little confused as to what this could be.

    • Jan Modric

      matt s,

      jumping jacks could cause enough stress to the spleen and diaphragm above it. Pain from the irritated diaphragm can be aggravated by deep breathing and walking, and can radiate up into the chest and shoulder (and probably back). Pain could cause transient constipation. If this is what happened, the pain should wean off in few days. Pain from the heart is usually felt behind the breastbone, or sometimes also below it.

      Or, maybe you have eaten something what caused constipation and cramps in the part of the colon that runs below the ribs.

  • Gary R.

    Jan, thank you for your quick response. To answer your questions: Yes, the pain occurs only when I sit but not always—30-60 percent of the time. The pain began about a year ago. When I think about it, I had radically changed my diet about a year ago (for the good: with natural foods; it is called a non-inflammatory diet). For example, for breakfast I eat two eggs, strawberries and blackberries. I never bloat and rarely have diarrhea. I also started taking probiotics about a year ago. You gave me a good starter list of ideas. I will share these with the gastroenterologist for my appointment in about a month. Gary R.

    • Jan Modric

      Gary R.,

      I’ve listed a lot of possibilities, and if you get tested for all, it may cost you a fortune. Your pain started a year ago, and you changed the diet at that time. If your bowel, especially colon, does not agree with your diet, it may react with pain. Trying the diet I mentioned or trying something what intuitively comes on your mind may help you. Eggs may be constipating and xylitol from berries can be broken down by intestinal bacteria and cause gas, which could irritate the colon. I’m not aware of any beneficial effects of probiotics in healthy people. Probiotics are bacteria and if you take them together with berries they could cause excessive gas.

  • matt s

    Jan M

    Well i had done the jumping jacks after the pain had started but everything you had mentioned seems to be spot on. Thanks a lot for your help. i will go ahead and go with my original plan of drinking lots of fluids and visiting my doctor if the pain doesn’t subside in a couple days.

  • Anointed1

    Here is what I have to say about this. Jesus heals and he can heal your body if you pray to him.
    Stop worrying. I use to do the same thing but God healed my body from all these pain.

  • sam

    hi im a 22 yr old female i have kidney infections all the time had kidney stones lastyear i didnt get better i have just got worse i get a very sore pain in my left side then soo long after that i end up in severe pain in my abdomnal just before my bowels move i feel sick and go really hot i have had test n they have all came back clear now i think its all in my head i wont go back to doctors just woundered if you could help me please

  • Cheryl

    To Ana and other women,
    Please look up interstitial cystitis. I had severe endometriosis and needed a hysterectomy at age 32…pain continued in bladder area, especially after holding urine all night long. Similiar experience as some womens’ comments: horrible pain always occuring at night or early morning to the point of nearly passing out. The pain so bad, I couldn’t open my eyes or move. Finally, urologist in Houston, Tx gave me a pamphlet about interstitial cystitis. As soon as I read the info, I knew that’s what I had. Doctor insisted on doing cystoscopy.Not a good experience. Turned out I had the worst case of I.C. he had ever seen. That was in 2003. I’ve been under care of pain physician, since. Pain meds & I have to follow special diet. It’s not easy.

  • sam

    im not constipated the doctors said i had ibs but im in severe pain and i dont think its normal because it comes on suddenly to and im doubled over in pain

    • Jan Modric

      sam,

      a low-FODMAP diet can help in IBS. This diet is composed from low-fructose diet and lactose-free diet. If you have IBS or some food intolerance that could help you in few days.

      But sudden strong pains can arise from kidney stones or stones in the ureter.

  • Debee

    Hi, I am a 40 year female. About a week and a half ago, I started to notice a sharp, burning pain just behind my left side ribcage when ever I bend down. It sort of feels like somthing is pushing at my ribs as well. Its at or near my stomach would be I guess. My father died from colon cancer and I am starting to get scared. Can any one help?

    • Jan Modric

      Debee,

      colon cancer at 40 is rare; it occurs mainly after 50. Fullness may be due to gas built in the part of the colon that runs below the rib cage. Obviously avoiding amount or type of food that irritates you could help. You can also check a low-FODMAP diet, and other causes of bloating and gas.

      Stomach lies in the upper middle abdomen – below the breastbone. Gas from the stomach would likely cause excessive belching.

  • Debee

    ALSO, I’ve notice its worse when ever I he eat a filling meal or eat spicy food. Not so bad when my stomach is empty.

  • Debee

    To Jan:
    Hi again. Thanks for answering me. I feel I should say that my father got colon cancer when her was 46…died at 48. So I am worried. As for the pain/burning feeling at my left side, I’ve been told to mention that I took a tumble down some stairs just before the pain started. Hurt my leg, arm and head but I’m fine. Could the fall have anything to do with the pain….like something torn? I have no brusing around that area but it is sometimes tender when push. Still just under my left side ribcage and still feel like somthing is pushing there.

    • Jan Modric

      Debee,

      if pain was not there before the fall, and has appeared shortly after the fall, then the fall and pain can be connected, and can be due to anything from a fractured rib to a streched muscle. Hard to say more without examination and some investigation, like ultrasound of the affected area.

      Colon cancer in the early stages does not likely cause abdominal tenderness. Due to early occurence of cancer in your father, you can ask a gastroenterologist for a colonoscopy, though.

  • Debee

    OH! and there is no excessive beltching and no bloating.

  • Etinchen

    Hi, my mother in law is 65 and is diabetic and is really good about keeping her blood sugars low. Recently a few weeks ago her lower left adominal close to her waist have been vibrating consistly like a heart beat. The pain is moderate however it hurts more when she walks or is more active. Her doctor said it is nothing serious however is currenly running urine and blood test. Is this dangerous?

    • Jan Modric

      Etinchen,

      a solid mas in the lower left abdomen is not likely normal. Abdominal ultrasound could reveal what it is. If it is a benign tumor, for example, urine and blood tests may be normal.

  • Etinchen

    Also, I forgot to mention that her lower left adominal has swelled up a little bit and is hard like a solid mass.

  • Etinchen

    My mistake, no swelling however still hard.

  • Debee

    To Jen:
    Thank you for your advise. Even though the burning feeling is still there, but a only a little bit, I’m beginning to think it was because of the fall. Its getting better now. As for the Colonoscopy, I’ve been mulling it over in my head for that last several years, because of this however, even if the pain was because of the fall, I may seriously consider it now. Its time to get it done.
    Thanks again.
    Take care. 🙂

  • Etinchen

    thank you Jan.

  • deb

    Monday night started suddenly around 10pm – extreme pain left lower abdomen. Responded sort of by about 4am to advil, pepto bismol and hotwater bottle. Around 7am when woke up, felt ok, pushed the area a little and the pain flared up horribly – nausea, a ittle gas. Again rest, advil, pepto Bismol, hotwater botle. Had water yesterday – no food. Felt better and still better today, but feels like its tugging – no response to pushing the area- still a bit nauseous.

    Not sure what is going on. If the pain is fading its getting better I think.

    • Jan Modric

      deb,

      hard to say was it temporary constipation due to certain food or there was an intestinal blockage from some organic reason, like hernia. If you don’t recover completely, or if it happens again, I recommend you to visit a gastroenterologist, or ER.

  • deb

    It feels like my intestine is tied in a knot.

  • daisyduke

    I have a lower left side pain while running. Just developed this week. Also have pain when I make sudden movements in this same area–like getting out of bed in the morning. This comes and goes.

    • Jan Modric

      daisyduke,

      where exactly does pain appear and is the area tender to touch? Any change in urination or bowel habit?

  • BKLRose03

    Every morning for a while now, I have been having lower left quadrant stomach pain. Its nothing unbearable, but its very annoying and sometimes occurs periodically during the day. I think it occurs more so when I am either sitting down or lying down. It just feels like theres a big blob of gas in there that just won’t go away. Sometimes when I pass gas, it feels a little better, but then it comes back. I have had a colonoscopy back in April, but nothing came back that I should be focused on besides internal hemorrhoids. Everything else is normal. What could this be?

    • Jan Modric

      BKLRose03,

      common causes of abdominal bloating and gas are food intolerances, like fructose malabsorption (symptoms worsen after fruits), lactose intolerance (after dairy), and others. A low-fructose diet should help in few days in fructose malabsorption. In a low-FODMAP diet, lactose is additionally excluded. Diagnosis of fructose malabsorption is made by a breath test with fructose.

      Intestinal parasites could cause bloating. Dx is with stool test for parasites.

  • Linny

    Hi I am a 22 year old female. For the last year I have being getting UTI’s every 4-6 weeks. I was sent for a cat scan & ultrasound which confirmed i have no left kidney. I have not had a UTI since June but I do have a very severe constant pain in my left hand side originating from the lower left back. This pain spreads across under my ribs to my left pelvis side behind belly button. The doctors thought i could have a remant of a urinary system on the left side. I was sent for a cystoscopy and it showed I have no remants either so it is not casuing the pain!I have been referred for a colonoscopy now. The pain is getting worse and my left hand side is very tender. I can not ly on this and have been been feeling sick whenever pressure is apllied to my side. I have also lost about a stone weight over last 2 months even though im eating normally. This is seriously affecting me now and I was hoping someone might be able to help on what this could be??

    • Jan Modric

      Linny,

      a disorder in the colon is possible (regarding you have no left kidney, there could be some congenital disorder, for example) and a colonoscopy could reveal it. If colonoscopy will not show anything, you may ask about a laparoscopy, which can reveal adhesions or related disorder, which was maybe not detected by the CT.

      A disorder in the bowel may block the passage of the stool and gases, so it may help if you avoid foods that yield a lot of gas (foods high in soluble fiber, soda, beer…).

  • jessica

    hi,my name is jessica i am 18 years old and i have a daughter she is 3 years old about to be 4 well ever since i had her i started getting stomach pain probloms real bad it hurts so bad that i cant even breath i went to the horpital so manytimes the first time they told me that i had gas problom and a 2 years later they said i had alot of poop in my stomach they gave me medicine and it worked but now it came back it hurts like a cramp but in my upper left stomach when i stand it hurts it goes away but it come back i dont know what to do im just scared it could be something real bad!!i need help

    • Jan Modric

      jessica,

      as already found by the doctor the possible causes of pain are constipation and gas built in your bowel. Here is a list of foods that may cause constipation and these foods may relieve it. It is important you drink sufficient amount of water, eat enough foods containing dietary fiber, and are trying to be physically active. Without this it is hard to get rid of constipation. Certain medications or supplements can also aggravate constipation.

      Another possible cause that you have developed fructose malabsorption – in this case fruits and other foods high in fructose could cause bloating and constipation. Here’s a low-fructose diet described.

  • ashok

    hi

    i was diagnosed a few months ago with an inguinal hernia that I will get repaired at the end of the year. In recent weeks, I have noticed that my abdomen has been looking rather distended. I am otherwise thin and in good shape. I do not overeat, smoke or drink much. I really don’t think it’s a normal potbelly. Ever since I noticed this, I’ve also noticed a reduction in appetite and occasional low/moderate nausea. My bowel movements have been soft/broken up and often yellow.

    Is it possible that I have a partial bowel obstruction due to the hernia? I have no stomach pain, no fever and haven’t actually vomited yet despite the occasional nausea. Have not suffered any constipation. I’m starting to think that the nausea and loose bowel movements are because of stress/worry induced from having noticed the distended abdomen. But then what was it that caused the distension?

    Would appreciate some advice. I am currently travelling and unable to see a doctor without rather considerable expense.

    • Jan Modric

      ashok,

      partial bowel obstruction due to hernia would be possible, although I can’t say how likely this is. In this case, distended abdomen would be from gas released from stool staying in the bowel for prolonged time. You would likely have episodes of constipation in this case.

      Bowel distension can be also from gas from other reasons, like food/water poisoning with intestinal parasites, which more likely occur during travel. Diagnosis is made by a stool test for parasites and treatment is by prescribed anti-parasitic medications. I don’t know for any anti-parasitic remedies that would be safe and effective. The test and medications should not be very costly. If not treated, parasitic infection may last for weeks or months.

      Other common causes of abdominal distention and soft yellow stools are diet high in soluble fiber, fructose malabsorption (or diet high in fructose) (here’s a low-fructose diet described), lactose intolerance. Other causes include disorders of the gallbladder, bile duct or pancreas.

  • ashok

    Also, I forgot to mention, I’m 28 and male.

  • Mohit

    Hi,

    I am a 27 year old male. I have slight pain in lower left abdomen, extending to lower back, left leg and left testis. The pain started round a month back and I consulted a Urologist, he did a ultrasound of left testicle and everything came out fine and the pain sub-sided by itself. From past 3-4 days, the pain has started again. Around 10 months back, I had undergone surgery for removal of right testis due to torsion. The left testis was tied to make sure torsion does not happens. Please help to diagnose the problem?

    • Jan Modric

      Mohit,

      this personal medical history questionnaire may help you to recall eventual other symptoms and thus help your doctor in a diagnosis. Except testis related disorders, urinary stones in the ureter, intestinal hernia and pinched nerve(s) in the lumbar spine, for example, would be possible.

  • ashok

    Thanks, Jan. So you’re saying it’s not very likely that it is partial bowel obstruction? My bowel movements are regular and I haven’t suffered any pain. I just wanted to know if there’s any risk of complete bowel obstruction/strangulation occurring while I’m travelling, given that my abdomen has been distended like this for weeks.

    I’m travelling around the US where medical care of even the smallest kind is incredibly expensive for an uninsured outsider but if there’s any likelihood of an emergency situation arising, I will obviously check myself in somewhere. It’s just that I’d rather not do that if I don’t have to.

    • Jan Modric

      ashok,

      honestly, I don’t dare to judge is it partial bowel obstruction or not. Even, if I said it’s not very likely, it’s still possible. One possible approach could be this:

      1. If a diet with a lot of sweet fruits, soda, and soluble fiber was a suspected cause of bloating and loose stools, a low-FODMAP diet might help in few days.
      2. If intestinal parasites are suspected, some doctor could be willing to prescribe anti-parasitic medications without ordering a stool test for parasites before that. Such a medication should also start to work in few days. Again, I do not recommend any non-prescribed anti-parasitic drug.
      3. If above measures do not help, a hernia repair arranged for the earlier date could solve the case.

  • chelseaw

    Hi there,
    I’m a 20 year old female, I have a history of DVT and a blood clotting condition. I had a DVT in my left leg from my abdomen to my knee and I also suffer from May Turner Syndrome. Lately, I’ve been experiencing constipation, nauseau, diarrhea, vomiting and loss of appetite for the past four to five days. Before this I was experiencing lower back pain, as I have a pretty misaligned back and I work in childcare. Now my left abdomen is very tender, any pressure or touch to it hurts. The pain also radiates down to my thigh and through my hip. This has happened before, but it seems to hurt more than before. I haven’t had any changes in my urine, no blood or cloudiness. Have also been experiencing swollen lymphnodes and recurring throat and sinus infections. Antibiotics hasn’t helped, the doctors recently said that I have allergies and put me on a nasal spray. This also hasn’t helped. I’m not sure if it’s all related, thanks.

    • Jan Modric

      Chelseaw,

      a gastroenterologist can judge if your lower abdominal symptoms is from your vessels condition or from gastrointestinal infection, for example. Lymph nodes may be swollen from several possible causes, and a blood test could maybe reveal the cause. Your condition sounds serious enough to me, so please visit a doctor. Hip and thigh pain can be from a pinched nerve in your lumbar spine, or from an inflamed psoas muscle, for example, or from worsening of your vessels disorder. So, there could actually be more that one cause of your problems.

  • Corc17

    Let me start of by saying i am between jobs right now and dont have health care. I have been experimenting some pain in my lower left abdomine. I can feel it when i press on it, but the pain is not over weelming. I have been able to go to the bathroom, but it does not feel like i am releasing everything. I have had snake like poo’s and a little diarrhea. The pain comes and goes and is only on the lower left side about an inch and a half diaganaly left between the belly button and the pelvic bone. Its only been two days and no blood in anything. Urine is fine. Seems to be worse at night. I was playing with me niece and nephwe and ate a big meal at my parents house the night i noticed it. We had ribs, mashed potatos, fried ocra, sausage. Im 27 5’10 148 pounds. Let me know what you think and thank you

    • Jan Modric

      Corc17,

      pain in the lower left abdomen and loose stools may be from bacterial food poisoning (in this case it is usually healed on its own in few days), or intestinal parasites (from some infection from weeks ago) – this may last for weeks or months. A stool test for parasites exist; treatment is by prescribed anti-parasitic medications.

  • Corc17

    Jan,

    Thank you for the response. I am feeling better today. The pain is not really even there when i press on it any more. I can still feel it a little bit. I did have a cold/cough about 3 weeks ago. I just have never really felt this before and after reading some things, I just figured it would’nt be a bad idea to talk to someone. I did feel a little clogged up and some gas pills helped me last night. There was some mucasy stuff in with my stool this morning. Any reason for concern? It was’nt much. Thanks again

    • Jan Modric

      Corc17,

      mucus in the stool can be from hemorrhoids, intestinal parasites, bacterial food poisoning, various food intolerances, colonic polyps, diverticulosis and so on. You may check a list of causes of mucus in the stool.

  • nicki

    hi. im 17 yr old and im having this pain on my lower left abdominal side like iht spreads on my left side. I had my period a week ago and now i have it again this week and heavier than ever ! i feel bloated and it feels soar when i press where it hurts or tend to do anything that puts pressure on it.

    • Jan Modric

      nicki,

      I recommend you to visit your gynecologist promptly. Two periods in a week is unusually at least.

  • carerbex

    hey, im 23 and have pcos and have been diagnosed for about 4 years now when i was diagnosed i had key hole surgery to identify what was causing my lower left abdominal pain to which they identified an enlarged colon and pcos. since then i have been in and out of hospital with the same left sided pain, given morphine, monitored and sent on my way as there is nothing further they can do. 3 months ago i went in for the same thing and had an internal ultrasound to which they identified that my left ovary was enlarged but they couldnt see a large cyst which they presumed was causing the pain and assumed that the left ovary was as a result. i have now had another ultra sound to see if another cyst has formed so they can remove it b4 i get the pain again to which was unsuccessful as there was nothing of the sort there apart from the typical lining associated to pcos (folicles) the consultant has said that pcos does not cause pain!?!! which appears silly to me as surely the egg that is released that is under developed and cyst ridden is going to hurt as is travels? anyway! he feels that its something to do with my bowel and that i need to see a bowel specialist?? but i have no constipation, gripes after eating any food good or bad and my motions are regular and not out of the ordinary to sugest constipation or otherwise…what is it? my sister has chrones disease, could that be a factor? any advice or help would be much appreciated

    • Jan Modric

      carebrex,

      an experienced gastroenterologist can say if enlarged colon can cause pain. It is not necessary there is any other disorder, like Crohn’s disease in the colon, and pain could be present without constipation or other symptom. Please, note that pelvic/abdominal adhesions can develop after a surgery and can be sometimes hard to detect with an ultrasound. Sometimes a laparoscopy is needed to identify adhesions. Also, MRI is much more detailed than ultrasound.

  • cutegal

    I’m almost 9 weeks pregnant 3rd pregnancy..
    since my 2nd pregnancy which didn’t make it…I’ve been having pain or sensitivity along side my left pelvis when pressing on it or just coughing alone it’s sensitive. it’s been couple months now and it’s constant. Some days i feel it more other days i don’t.not sure but there’s a weird sensation like burning sometimes. also when a gas is travelling in that area it’s like i feel the dull pain and then slowly comes trhough the rectum.
    when I’m standing up..my left side looks more swollen then the right…i went to see doctors none seems worried. some say constipation..some say weakness in the abdominal wall…I had a trans-vaginal ultrasound and nothing came up no cyst nothing abnormal…now i think that it could be my sigmoid colon. now I’m afraid that it can interfere with pregnancy and causing another miscarriage…what could it be? and should i ask for a sigmoidoscopy?

    • Jan Modric

      cutegal,

      nine weeks pregnancy is not a contraindication for sigmoidoscopy, also not for MRI. There are problems with female organs that much more commonly cause miscarriage than eventual problems in the colon, though. A simple gas built in the sigmoid colon could cause distension of the lower left abdomen, but this would reduce obviously after passing gas.

      I recommend you to try to avoid eventual constipation, so you will be able to exclude this as a potential cause of distension and pain. Also, if this is a problem, try to avoid foods, like legumes and oats and certain fruits or carbonated beverages that can produce a lot of gas.

      If still no help, a gynecologist or gastroenterologist can say, would MRI or sigmoidoscopy reveal something what transvaginal ultrasound hasn’t.

  • gnome

    i have recently been experiencing a dull painful throbbing sensation in my left outer/upper abdominal area just below my ribbs . the pain is constant and last for a few days then eases off
    i have been getting this pain after heavy squatts at the gym and have been wearing my weight belt very tight .
    there is no tender areas to speak of but just this gnawing throbbing pain .
    i am an IBS sufferer off and on if thats of any significance .
    any suggestions would be greatly appreciated

    • Jan Modric

      gnome,

      some rest from both squatting and wearing a weightlifting belt (and weightlifting of course) would reveal if these are the causes of pain.

      In IBS, a low-FODMAP diet can help.

      Intestinal hernia would be also possible.

  • bella01

    i am a 24yr old female and for the past 8 months i have been suffering from sever lower pelvic pain, it started with nausia and dizzyness and sever pain where by my vision would be affected and i’d feel like i was going to pass out. i’ve had numerous pregnancy tests (including a blood test 2 months ago) which have all come back negative. the doctors think i suffered a misscariage however i am still getting sever lower pelvic pain, no pain killers help. it starts on either side and then radiates to the middle, kind of like a stitch but magnified.. alot! the doctors refuse to give me a scan and investigate it further and they dont think its endometriosis.

    when i was very young i suffered from severe bladder infections, they were so bad i would often find blood in my underwear. i had many investigations on my kidneys and was told my bladder was that of an 80 year old women not a young child. i also had to have my urethra stretch 3 times as it was too narrow. i have not had a urine infection for at least the past 2/3years.

    lately i have completly gone off sex, at first i put this to the pain i am getting, however when i spoke to my sister about it she described the same feelings of feeling dirty and not being able to be close with her partner, it has been mentioned in a vague way that when my sister and i were very little we were molested.

    i am worried that something that happened all those years ago is affecting me now, my mother wont talk to us and denies anything happened but will let little details drop and keeps telling us to speak to a doctor. i dont know what to do as this pain is affecting my work and private life but i feel like no one is taking me seriously. please help

    • Jan Modric

      bella1,

      maybe an urine test would show something. I strongly recommend you to convince your personal doctor or gynecologist to make some investigation.

  • Gavvydee

    Hi, Im a 30 year old male. I’ve been having a worrying pain in the left side of my groin. It feels as though it’s a vein or a tight tendon and it goes from my groin to the lower shaft of my penis. I thought it was just bruising of my groin from an increase of sexual activity, I guess I’ve been having sex af least once a day for the past 3 weeks. I thought it was dying down but now seems to have spread to the lower part of my penis’ shaft. I get hemmaroids and I wonder if this could be related, this vein or tendon or whatever it is feels hard like a cord, all the time, and is sore to the touch. I think I’ll start taking some voltaren anti inflammatory and see if that sorts it out. Please what do you think? U always think the worst when it concerns the fily jewels, I really hope it’s not cancer or anything. Thanks a lot for your time.

    • Jan Modric

      Gavvydee,

      hemorrhoids related swollen veins in the groin alone would not likely feel “hard like a cord”, but a subsequent thrombosis in the veins could. It could be some tendon, but I can’t exclude inflammation of the spermatic cord or vessels supplying the testes or penis. If the tenderness won’t start to wean off soon, I recommend you to see an urologist.

  • Nic19

    Hey
    I am a 19 year old girl.For the past 10 days I have been experiencing pain in the left side of my abdomen.I feel constant contractions inside and am unable to sit still.My back has also begun to hurt now.
    A few days ago I was feeling a bit bloated as well.

    • Jan Modric

      Nic19,

      bloating can cause pain. Various food intolerances, such as fructose malabsorption or lactose intolerance may cause bloating. A low-fructose or lactose-free diet may help.

      Cramping pain in the lower abdomen may also arise from gastrointestinal or gynecological disorders, so, if diet does not help, I recommend you to see a doctor.

  • silvio

    ola tenho uma leve dor ou um encomodo do lado esquerdo do abdome, fiz todos os exames de colo induscopia ecografia tomografia e ressonancia e nada encontrado o que pode ser isto alguem me ajude, nao é uma dor mas sim um encomodo do lado esquerdo abaixa das costelas.

    • Jan Modric

      silvio,

      one possible cause of pain under the left rib cage is gas built in the colon, and this may be due to certain food intolerances, like fructose malabsorption or IBS. A low fructose or low-FODMAP diet could help.

  • fifi

    Hi

    For 1 yr i have had on and off low left side ache and recently low back ache.My stools are formed to begin with and then loose of brownish orange colour,small amount of same coloured mucus.One yr ago had barium enema which was normal.I am 33 and female.Please help!

    • Jan Modric

      fifi,

      a gastroenterologist might suggest you a stool test for parasites or some other stool test. X-ray with barium enema does not reveal intestinal parasites.

  • Corc17

    Jan,

    I wrote to you about a week ago with some lower left side pain I noticed after eating a big meal and playing with my neice and nephew at my parents. I had some mucas but not really anymore. You said you thought it might be bacterial food poisioning or maybe intestanal parasite. The symptoms of pain are gone but i am still pooping less then what i think i should. It is small loose stools in the morning. I was not eating as much for a couple of days bc i wasnt releasing as much stool as i thought i should. I am now eating more and better but the stool is still small and loose. Any suggestions on why i might not be releasing everything? Is it a good thing that the pain is gone?

    • Jan Modric

      Corc17,

      both constipation and loose stools may be a symptom of intestinal parasites. The course if parasitic infection can be vague and prolonged and does not necessary heal on its own…I’m not aware of any safe and effective anti-parasitic remedies, so you might ask about the cost of a stool test for parasites. Bacterial infections from food poisoning only rarely last more than a week.

  • BZECAN

    Hello, I have spent much time reading the information. And some are similar but not exactly. I am 30 year old female. I have two children, 11 and 9. After my first child I have had severe abdominal pain on the lower left side of my body. The pain usually comes every other month, sometimes during ovulation,and this time during my period. I end up in the ER where they inject something to relieve the pain. If I do not get the injection, I end up vomiting (and get dehydrated quickly)I had an ultrasound yesterday, and have had them many times over the past 11 years, but they tell me that everything is normal. Obviously there is something wrong, what can it be?. I was thinking something with my colon? Please help, I have spent 11 years being poked, medicated, blood work, and injections.I am afraid it could be something really bad and they aren’t finding it!!!Please Help me

    • Jan Modric

      BZECAN,

      where exactly is the pain (in inches from the lower ribs or navel)? Are you prone to constipation? By checking this personal medical history questionnaire you may recall some other symptoms. Pain arising from the colon would be likely accompanied with other bowel symptoms, like changed bowel habit, blood in the stool….A colon twisting around its axis (volvulus) or one part of the colon invaginating into an adjacent part (intussusception) are rare, but possible causes of strong pain and vomiting, though. Pain triggered by an ovulation or period is more likely related to your female organs. By ultrasound, certain bigger things, like ovarian cysts can be excluded, but not 100%. One possible cause would be endometriosis or something within the tubes. Nausea/vomiting and abdominal pain typically occur in disorders of the hollow muscular organs in the abdomen (tubes, bowel, appendix, ureters).

  • JPC

    I’m a type 2 diabetic that has been maintaining aic and dietary needs for 7 years now for the diabetes. due to a medication foul-up a few years back i got keto-acidosis and was vomiting very hard for almost 2 months.

    my question is this, i am now noticing harsh abdominal muscular locks. i have always experienced intermittent muscular locks in my left and right calf muscles.
    most of my life, but the additional full abdominal muscular locks are both painful and worrying me.

    • Jan Modric

      JPC,

      one possible cause is a mineral imbalance in your blood (such as hypokalemia, hypernatremia….). I strongly recommend you to visit your doctor.

  • KLR

    hey im 16 and have been having some pain in my lower left abdominal for about a week now and about 2 days ago my left shoulder started hurting too. so i was just wondering if anyone could help me out i tried to google it to find out but it had so many things i just didnt know. so thanx 🙂 bye!

    • Jan Modric

      KLR,

      is your abdomen distended, do you have excessive gas or any change in bowel habit?

  • elliot

    “Ball sack”? Now MY side is hurting. Seriously though, HealthHype is a great site but you should only seek the opinion and experiences of others after you have visited a doctor. Get it check out by a pro and best wishes.

  • ahriya

    10/28/10
    Hello, I’m a fifteen year old girl. This month of October 2010, I’ve been experiencing some strange problems in my lower abdomen/pelvic region. I’m scared because it’s been going on for almost a month now. It all started on October 2nd. My pelvis felt weird, pressurized, or uncomfortable. I’ve never experienced bloating before, and my mom just said it sounded like I was having some bloating. So I thought it would go away, but it still remained 24 hours of the day for TWO and a half WEEKS. I have currently stopped feeling the pressure/bloatedness. And during the discomfort, I was merely constipated. So now that that has stopped, I am feeling pains in my lower left pelvis. One of the days, my lower left pelvis would hurt; it felt kind of like a subtle stab, yet it was fairly tolerable. It would only hurt when I’d walk or extend my left leg. It went the next day. Then a few days later, I felt an aching pain in my lower left pelvic region (the same place) and it would come & go throughout the day. It felt like a tight squeeze, then release of pain. It lasted for 2 days. So this was after my bloating went. Now, I’ve been feeling like I have to urinate more frequently that I used to. I used to be able to sleep the whole night without urinating until the morning, but now I have to go to the restroom way earlier. I’ll just be sitting there in class and I’ll have the urge to go pee, but I’d have went pee like 20 minutes earlier. So that’s kinda freaking me out. AND NOW, ontop of all of that, Yesterday (the 27th), I was running the mile in PE (which isn’t abnormal) and right beside my bellybutton and in that region on the left side, everytime I would land on my left foot, it felt like there was something hollow in there, or pressurized just in that region. The best way I could describe it as is like a running cramp but lower in the left abdomen region. And after school on the ride home, the car kinda was bumpy & in that SAME AREA, it started hurting. It felt like a tube was in my left lower abdomen and it just hurt really bad. I don’t know that it is and I’m really scared. As ridiculous as it sounds, I am worried that I have Ovarian Cancer. Please help out asap. My dad is unemployed with no work and we can’t afford to go to the doctor’s just yet. Please help. Thanks

    • Jan Modric

      ahriya,

      first about frequent urinating: do you feel any burning during urination, and is there any different urine color or smell as usually? If yes, it is probably from an urinary infection, and if not, then the frequent urination could arise from gas in the rectum pressing upon the bladder and irritating it.

      Also, when the pain occurs, is the painful area tender to touch or pressure, and do you feel any lump under the fingers? Do you ever feel nauseated during the pain or at other times? Has your bowel habit changed after October 2nd, has the stool color changed, or you have noticed any blood or mucus in it? Do you think your symptoms are worse after (few minutes to several hours) certain foods, like fruits or milk or any other food? Has your period changed in any way? Any fever, even if only slightly elevated body temperature?

      I can’t exclude ovarian cancer, even if symptoms you’ve mentioned are not typical.

      The only thing I know you can try by yourself is a low-FODMAP diet: by excluding certain foods from your diet, less gas may be created in your bowel, and if this was the cause your pain should lessen or go away in few days. If this does not help, I strongly recommend you to get examined by a school doctor if you have any, or your pediatrician.

  • Ruby83

    Since early yesterday morning I have had infrequant stabbing pains in the lower left hand side of my abdomen. These pains come and go, usually quickly, but they occassionally hang around for a few minutes as either a dull ache or throb. I would normally write something like this off as ovulation pain, however I have also had some tenderness in this area, and my skin is sensitive to the touch in this area, and also in the corresponding area on my back.
    I have also had general lathargy/lack of energy, and slight naeusea but no change to the frequancy/colour/consistency to my stools or urination. There is no possibility of pregnancy.
    Should I be taking this seriously enough to visit my doctor?

    • Jan Modric

      Ruby83,

      yes, I recommend you to visit a doctor. Throbbing lower abdominal pain and nausea usually arise from cramps in a hollow muscular organ (bowel, left ureter or Fallopian tube). Tenderness and lethargy further speak for some active process in the abdomen.

  • spencer

    HI, CAN SOMEONE PLEASE TELL ME WUT IS WRONG WITH ME. I DO FEEL SOME PAINS ON THE LEFT UPPER AND LOWER SIDE OF MY TOMMY, IT COMES AND GOES ATIMES FOR MONTHS, I JUST NOTICED THAT I THE PAINS COMES AFTER HAVING A SMOKE AND ATIMES AFTER EATING… CAN Y0U PLEASE ADVICE ME. I AM SCARED HERE

    • Jan Modric

      spencer,

      anything other apart from pains: distended abdomen, excessive gas, constipation, diarrhea…? Any specific foods that irritate you: fruits, dairy, wheat…?

  • ahriya

    Thanks for responding so promptly (:

    No, I don’t have any burning sensation when I urine. & I dont think I have noticed any change in urine color.

    So one of the pains I described, (the one where it hurts everytime I extend my leg) DID hurt when I pushed against it, but that was two weeks ago. Now some pains feel like a little sting or ache on the left abdomen side. No lumps, no nauseated feeling, and About my bowel habits… I was constipated during the two week abdomenal pressure time, but other than that, Now I’m pretty much back to normal. Some days I can’t though. The color of my stools HAVE changed to a dark greenish color, but I’ve been eating SO MUCH vegetables every day now because my mom advised me to.
    And I don’t see any blood in my stool, but one time I wiped and I think I saw some discharge that wasn’t from my vagina because I had wiped further back. (sorry, gross details lol)
    And… I don’t think it’s associated with my eating times because the pain occurs spontaneously with no pattern.

    OK, my period. In the month of SEPTEMBER it was supposed to come in the middleish. but it came on like the 19-20th for only three days & it was SUPER light. Like REALLY light. But in October it came perfectly normal. I’ll see if it comes this November normally.

    And No fever. whatsoever.

    Thanks so much!!
    I felt some pains today, & I mainly felt them when my digestive system felt very active.. like when my digestive tract was moving around and being all gurgley. Then the gurgling would stop and the pain would abort… I don’t know, but sometimes it felt like the pain would come if I just changed positions…
    Anyway. The pain’s not horrible, it’s just bothersome and scary not knowing what it’s from.

    Thanks for your help & suppport.

    • Jan Modric

      ahriya,

      it sounds to me that your pains arise from the bowel, probably from gas distending the bowel, or just from constipation. Now, there are several possible causes of bloating, gurgling, constipation (and discharge):
      – intestinal parasites (not necessary worms; could be unicellular, so invisible, like Giardia), which can cause green stools and all other symptoms, you’ve mentioned. Diagnosis is made by a stool test for parasites, ordered by a gastroenterologist, or, possibly your pediatrician, and, if positive, treated with antiparasitic medications. I DO NOT recommend you trying some over-the-counter (non-prescribed) antiparasitic remedies, since they may be either ineffective or dangerous.
      – I can hardly imagine which other gastrointestinal disorder would cause symptoms appearing on an exact day and lasting for almost a month, but fructose malabsorption (FM) could be one of them. In FM, symptoms should lessen considerably after 2-4 days of a low-fructose diet, meaning not eating fruits and certain other foods.
      – In celiac disease, symptoms could lessen after some days on gluten-free diet (no wheat, barley and rye, and to be safe, oats products, and any other food containing gluten).
      – I could continue with Crohn’s disease, but abovementioned disorders should be ruled out before that. Bowel cancer is extremely unlikely in your age. Ovarian cancer by itself would not likely cause abdominal gurgling and mucus in the stool. Urinary infection is also not very likely, if there is no urinary discomfort. Frequent urination can be from distended rectum (from any of abovementioned causes) upon the bladder.

      What you can do by yourself, is having a 2-4 days low fructose diet trial, and, if no relief, a gluten-free diet trial. The next step could be asking a doctor about a stool test for parasites or whatever he/she considers as appropriate. If frequent urination will persist, an urine test for infection could be still appropriate, since I can’t actually exclude any disorder from here. My first thought are intestinal parasites, though.

  • ahriya

    OH and I have noticed I haven’t been able to pass gas like I have in the past. Each day I have less than 2 gas passings, IF THAT.
    sooo I dunno!

  • BZECAN

    Hello, Sorry it took so long to respond. The pain is about 3 inches from the navel diagonal to the left side. I do not usually have constipation or any major changes in bowel movements. I do suffer from hemorrhoids. if that is relevant. Is there any way to know what is wrong, any additional testing? I would really like it to go away. Or will I just have to get the injection every time it occurs? I am willing to do anything right now.I can not think of any other symptoms. The pain however, is crippling, I can not eat, sleep, or think.I another Thank you for your response!!

    • Jan Modric

      BZECAN,

      pain and nausea related to ovulation or period may arise from the ovary or Fallopian tube. A gynecologist can say if salpingography (X-ray of Fallopian tubes with a contrast) would be appropriate. To detect endometriosis or adhesions, laparoscopy may be needed.

      If you never have any bowel problems, even not during painful periods, I’m not sure, if the problem arises from the colon; but I can’t exclude this.

  • Crazykitty

    Hi I’m 18 and I have pain on my left side under my waste line. It feels swollen and I have had movements today. Sometimes I don’t have movements for 6 days. I never have discomfort from this. I’m having pain moving around and hurts alot to touch and sometimes hard to breathe. I’m also having problems with my heart which or being tested right now and I also have (Ic) Or Painful Pladder Sydrome. Please let me know what you think.

  • Crazykitty

    No I don’t feel any relief from it. This happened also three weeks ago but my whole stomach had swollen and bruised. But I only had pain in the left side in the same area. Last night the pain spread to my lower back as well.

    • Jan Modric

      Crazykitty,

      to understand your situation I would need to know all your symptoms, also eventual non-abdominal ones, and symptoms in the past. This questionnaire may help recall you details. With “bruised” you mean visible bruises?

  • Crazykitty

    Sharp pain when I move anything. I feel warm. I was shaking when the pain gets bad. There was a small black brusie below the ribs. It felt like someone use my stomach as a punching bag. Neasua. Sweating abit also. I just woke up to this one morning. It took two weeks for the swelling and Brusing to leave.

    • Jan Modric

      Crazykitty,

      feeling warm, shakiness and sweating can speak for an infection or inflammation. Bruise was probably from the bleeding under the skin. I don’t know what could be the cause, but I strongly recommend you to visit the doctor. A simple blood test may guide the doctor toward the diagnosis. I recommend you to prepare yourself for the appointment with writing down your complete medical history and the exact development of your recent symptoms (you can use the questionnaire), with exact symptoms characteristics, location of the tender points and such.

  • Sila

    I am a 24 year old female. I’m having abdominal pain since 30 hours. It started in the middle of my stomach, now, the left part aches as well. Also a pain in the back started. (but that can be due to laying down for 17 hours. I feel better when I sit.)
    I haven’t vomitted yet though I have the urge time to time. I do not constipate.
    I did carry some heavy stuff and I got a chill the same day as it was very cold.
    Thank you very much

    • Jan Modric

      Sila,

      can you feel any lump or tender spot anywhere in the abdomen? An intestinal hernia could cause pain and nausea. If your symptoms worsen, you may visit a gastroenterologist to get a diagnosis.

  • Crazykitty

    I went to my doctor and she is thinking I have fibroids. Ultra sound will figure it out. Thanks you for the help though.

  • leanne.

    wonder if you can help me, i was having abdominal cramps for around a month which have now led on to a stingin pain in the abdominal area and the lower back, i also have pain in my legs and sometimes my pelvic region, i found two lumps in my vagina which come and go? im nt sure if i have bleeding them they dissapear or if its because i have irregular periods due to just coming off depo a month ago, please help, im worried it is something which will weaken my fertility like ovarian cysts or something 🙁 x

    • Jan Modric

      leanne,

      you have some obvious gynecological problems, so it could be appropriate to visit a gynecologist.

  • faisal

    Good day to u

    hi i am male 29. first i have lower back pain since one month also i got treatment but still i am suffering ontop that i feel slight irritation between on my lower right abdorm and lower v with sharp paining someting around abdorm area and i went for ultra sound scan and urine check every thing was normal finally doctor gave me niroxin but still i dont feel good also its really disturbing me and i dont have any other problem in my body pls help me thx alot

    • Jan Modric

      faisal,

      where exactly do you feel pains (in inches from the lower edge of the rib cage and hips or navel? Are they constant, dull, sharp, cramping…pains…are they triggered by meals, exercise, moving around? Any constipation, diarrhea, bloating, discomfort during urination? Any tender spot?

  • Sila

    Dear Dr. Modric, although I spent the whole time in bed, I could visit the doctor who told me (after blood and urine tests) that I probably have urinary tract infection and gave me a broad spectrum antibiotic. Now I feel better.
    Thank you for your reply.
    Best regards

    • Jan Modric

      Sila,

      I’m not a doctor, but antibiotics helping you may mean your doctor was right. I recommend you to take the whole course of treatment as prescribed, even if you will feel completely healed in the meantime.

  • Kristyn

    I’m 17 years old and have been having lower abdominal pain. I’ve been eating regularly, using the bathroom regularly. I usually only get the pain during the night when i’m sleeping. The pain is so bad that it wakes me up. I also play sports so i figured this might’ve been from that. I am sexually active, and did take a pregnancy test which came out negative.(my mum doesn’t know i’m sexually active) I was referred to an OBGYN by my doctor, but i would like to know what you may think this is?

    • Jan Modric

      Kristyn,

      I agree with your doctor. A skipped period and pain in the lower abdomen are two good reasons to visit a gynecologist.

  • Kristyn

    I also haven’t had my period yet, and i believe i’m passed due.

  • dead

    im gonna suicide i think i got a prancreatic cancer

    • Jan Modric

      dead,

      are you sure you have done and say everything you have to do in this life already? Finding the exact diagnosis is one of the first things you can do, since this may blow away a lot of your worries and uncertainty.

  • Nilima

    Hey

    I am 19,female and experiencing left abdominal pain and sometimes in the mid section for the past 25-30 days.I feel nauseous a lot especially after I eat something.And my stomach feels bloated.My periods are regular or at the most,come plus or minus 2 days.My stools range from hard to black and normal.

    Please help !

    • Jan Modric

      Nilima,

      common causes of prolonged abdominal bloating include intestinal parasites and various food intolerances, such as fructose malabsorption, lactose intolerance, celiac disease or food allergies. Appropriate few-days lasting diet trials could reveal the cause. Was the shoulder and back pain more on the left or right side?

  • Nilima

    Also,the pain never seems to go away..it’s always there.I also experienced a little shoulder and back pain a few days back.

  • aiden211

    I have had left lower abdomen pain for about a week now. At first the pain was very severe but it seems to only hurt now when I need to have a bowel movement and a little bit of time afterwards. My stool has not changed any. Sometimes I have a lot of mucus in my stool and tiny spots of blood. I am 25 years of age and have had stomach problems for a while. Please help

    • Jan Modric

      aiden211,

      pain, blood and mucus could be from intestinal parasites, for example (diagnosis is with a stool test), or some organic bowel disease, such as Crohn’s disease. In any case, I recommend you to visit a gastroenterologist

  • Nilima

    The shoulder and the back pain was on the left side…

    • Jan Modric

      Nilima,

      a shoulder and back pain on the left side may be a “referred pain”associated with something pressing upon the diaphragm from the abdominal side. You’ve mentioned black stools – these could be from stomach bleeding. It’s possible your symptoms arise from the gastrointestinal tract, so I suggest you to visit a gastroenterologist.

  • Nilima

    Thank you so much for your time ! Your site is really helpful ! 🙂

  • annemarie2010

    hi, im 15 years old and ive bin having a lower left pain in my stomache for a thew days and it comes and goes…
    i dont no wether its serious for go to the doctors or not but its actually causes me pain most times when its there any idea what it could be??

    • Jan Modric

      annemarie2010,

      do you feel aches in both legs or only in the left one and where: in the upper leg or the whole leg? Is abdominal pain worse in the morning or after meals or during walking? Would you say you are more constipated or bloated you were before these aches appeared – when did they appear, by the way?

  • annemarie2010

    btw it also causes for my legs be ‘acheing’ pain sort of type aswell ..

  • tg0926

    I was wondering if you could give me an idea of what’s going on with me. I’m a male, 31 years old. I started jogging a few months ago to lose weight. I built myself up to where I was just able to run 5k. I did this about 3 times. After the last time, I felt an urgency to urinate. While doing so it burned like crazy and had some blood. I let this go a few weeks because it stopped (dumb I know), but I was still getting pains in the groin and perineum area. I woke up one morning with pain in the lower back so I was afraid it was a kidney infection. I went to the doctor and got a urinalysis, it came back with no infection or blood. Doctor went ahead and gave me antibiotics and said he thought I have prostatitis. I took the drugs and I feel a little better, however I still have low back pain and some pains in my sides (mainly the left). Bowel movements appear fine and I haven’t noticed any blood in urine or stools. The pain is more like an ache rather than sharp pain. Does this sound like Prostatitis still or something else? I was thinking kidney stones, but don’t kidney stones cause sudden sharp pains rather than constant dull pains? Thanks for any advice.

    • Jan Modric

      tg0926,

      kidneys are located under and partly below the lower edge of the rib cage on the back, slightly toward the sides. Kidney pain or tenderness is not normal and can be caused by various causes including infection, stones, inflammation, cancer…

  • Skye

    Hi,
    for over a year now i have been having very bad left abdominal pain. It goes away then comes back..sometimes so bad all I can do is lay down. I went to the hospital and he said it was a pulled muscle..which was stupid to me since this is over a year. I was worried it might be a cyst on my ovaries.
    I was wondering what could it be?
    Thanks

    • Jan Modric

      Skye,

      where exactly do you feel pain (in inches from the navel)? Is it a constant or occasional pain? Is it tender to touch, related to meals, moving?

  • Skye

    Hello, its about 3inchs away from the navel. When it is sore it hurts to touch. It’s a random pain but its been happening more often the more I let it go.

    • Jan Modric

      Skye,

      cramping pain three inches left from the navel and tender to the touch, appearing only occasionally, may be due to bloating (due to constipation or partial colon obstruction in the colon or small intestinal hernia, for example. I’m not sure if stones in the ureter would be tender to touch. Pain from ovaries or Fallopian tubes would be probably felt lower in the pelvis. It is important to tell do you have any nausea during the painful attack, do you feel any abnormal lump, any change in bowel habit, burning urination, pain in the back…

  • linzzer18

    could pain in you left rib cage be due to your appedixs im 22

    • Jan Modric

      linzzer18,

      appendix is located in the lower right abdomen, so it would extremely unlikely cause the pain in the left rib cage area. What kind of pain is it, is it constant, related to meals? Since when do you have the pain? Any bloating, excessive gas? Is the area tender to touch? How old are you?

  • Mary

    I ‘ve been having pain in my lower left side abdomen which i went for Ultrascan and the result said i have pouch of douglas. Till now the is still there. Could this cause irregular mestrual period, because my period cease at times.

    • Jan Modric

      Mary,

      yes, the abnormal pouch of Douglas can be related to irregular periods, but I can’t say if this is the cause in your case or not.

  • danny

    my partner has had pain in her left side for month now, near to the hip region. she is awaiting results for both smear and sti tests. there is no pain when urinating or known factors of sti’s. the doctor did mention a trace of blood in the urine and prescribed her trimethoprim for 3 days but this has not removed the cramp like pains. do you think a longer course is required or could this be an sti?

    • Jan Modric

      danny,

      is it a constant pain, is it aggravated or relieved by bowel movements, any lump, bloating, change in bowel habit?

      To make a diagnosis of urinary infection, bacteria or other microorganisms should be detected in the urine test. Duration of treatment depends on type of microorganism found, severity of infection and type of antibiotic used, so I can’t say how long would be long enough. Pain in the lower left abdomen without any symptom during urination or visible changes in the urine and without excessive microorganisms in the urine test (?) is not provide strong evidence for an urinary infection, if you ask me.

      Sexually transmitted disease can be suspected from symptoms (vaginal discharge, itch…) and confirmed by appropriate tests.

      If blood in the urine has actually originated from the urinary tract, and no microorganisms were found in the urine, tests to find other causes of blood in the urine (urinary stones, kidney inflammation, cancer and other urinary disorders) can be performed. Urine sample could be also contaminated with the blood from menstrual or other vaginal or rectal bleeding.

  • danny

    it has been almost continuse for a month, but sometimes for painful than other times. there are no lumps or change in bowl movement has occured. results from tests are not yet back but doctor assumed it was a bladder infection and therefore prescribed the said drug for 3 days. there are no obvious signs of sti’s and nor do i have any myself. the pain that occurs seems to be quite harsh almost like what i would call a cramp

    • Jan Modric

      danny,

      pain caused by a bladder infection would be likely located in the middle lower abdomen, below the navel, and not near the hip. Cramps felt near the left hip could arise from the muscles in the abdominal wall (which would be likely tender to touch), left Fallopian tube, left ureter or the last part of the colon. Again, if blood in the urine originated from the urinary tract, and antibiotics do not appear to have any effect, other urinary disorders, like urinary stones, can be investigated (special urine tests, ultrasound of the lower abdomen…). First, she should wait for vaginal smear test results, though.

  • danny

    ok thankyou

  • andy100

    Hi there,

    I am 31 and have had a dull ache in the left hand side of my pelvis (and now starting to rise up through my left side actually) for about a month now.. sometimes get slight twinges too, a really weird feeling that feels like something’s going to give all of a sudden but only lasts for a second and then goes again maybe around 8 times a day. Any clues as to what this could be? Thank you..

    • Jan Modric

      andy100,

      it is the left ureter (urinary stones) and the descending part of the colon (diverticles, IBS..) that run on the left side down to the pelvis. Hard to say more withouth knowing the time course of the pains and eventual other symptoms.

  • Concerned

    I have been having sharp abdominal pains on the left side in one spot. I have been peeing more frequently. and my discharge had first started as white/clear mucusy. then it was like barely any for a few weeks.. and now theres more muscousy discarge again but it has a little brownish tint to it. what does this mean?

    • Jan Modric

      Concerned,

      it may be a combination of the urinary and vaginal infection. I strongly recommend you to visit an urologist or gynecologist.

  • eyvonne

    hi can someone please help. in feb this year i had my gallbladder removed due to pain, but ive started having pain again on my left hand side of my stomach it hurts to touch it but if i press on the right hand side i get a very sharp pain on that side as well, ive had no change in going to the loo, when the pain comes on it hurts to stand sit and lay down. i feel sick with the pain but have never been sick. thanks

    • Jan Modric

      eyvonne,

      where exactly on the left and right side do yo feel the pain? When it appears, for how long does it persist? Is there any visible bloating on the left side? Was any gallbladder disorder, such as gallstones, confirmed after a gallbladder removal? Pain on the right could arise from the bile duct, and the pain on the right from gas built in the colon and caused by excessive amount of bile. I recommend you to speak with the surgeon who has operated you or with a gastroenterologist.

  • eyvonne

    had my gallbladder was removed because of gallstones. no bloating. the pain in my left side is across the top just under my rib cage and goes all the way down to my hip, i have it all day and then when i get up the next morning it’s gone and im fine again. and the pain on my right is just below the hip. thanks

    • Jan Modric

      eyvonne,

      to me, it sounds, like the pain below the left rib cage and on the left side arises from the transverse and descendant part of the colon, and the pain on the right from the first part of the colon. After a gallbladder removal, the bile from the liver constantly flows into the intestine, when you eat and when you don’t, so, at times there may be an excess of the bile. Normal intestinal bacteria (in the colon) break down the bile and thus produce some gas and certain substances that irritate the colon. In this case, oatmeal or other foods high in soluble fiber can bind some bile, which is excreted with the stool. There is also a drug cholestyramine, that does the same job, available. I don’t know if this what I’ve described is actually happening in your case, but you can speak with your doctor about this possibility.

  • Mishika

    Hi,

    I have been experiencing severe pain on the left side of my body. Its very hard to describe where the pain is coming and going. I have it on my back all the way to the front and lower stomach. I have sharp pains running either on the side of my thigh or towards the inside near my groin. I have also been getting dizzy spells and chest pains. It is sore to touch my left side of the body. For some reason the pain seems to get worse between monday – thursday and eases up through out the rest of the week. I have been experiencing this for the past three weeks. I was admitted into hospital where they have taken x-rays of my back and kidneys along with UVI and ultra sound scans. The docs cannot determine what is causing the agonising pain. Even at times when they gave morphine, it did not help with the pain. I cannot lift my left to my stomach without feeling the pain. I am worries and scared and would be very greatfull if you could guide me as to what is causing this?
    Many thanks

    • Jan Modric

      Mishika,

      how did the pains start: suddenly or slowly? What different you do Friday-Sunday? What kind of job do you have? Are dizzy spells related to pain or are there all the time? For how long “sharp pains” in the leg/groin persist – a second, several minutes…? Any other symptoms, like tingling in the arms/legs, symptoms during urination, change in a bowel habit?

  • eyvonne

    thanks for your help and yes its put my mind at rest,

  • tonsoffun1001

    Hi,

    I am a 22yr old male in good health except for:

    I have constant abdominal discomfort in my lower left quadrant. I feel gas constantly moving about and making creeking/boiling noises. I often feel a large flatulent building up and when I try to expel it, maybe 10-20% leaves. My lower region has experienced pain for a few years now. Mornings are more comfortable and discomfort progresses until night when it’s often at it’s worst… Left side appears slightly “swollen” often, clearing of throat adds pressure. Discomfort reaches up my left back, down to just below waistline area, and sometime left leg. Exercise helps temporarily. Bearing down/pushing when trying to fart/poop feels like I might burst the main site of discomfort (just below waistline left side). Sitting in car is least comfortable position.

    I have mild constipation at times and my stools are VERY diverse, sometimes hard and dry other times diarrhea. When I was little (5-10) I was frequently constipated, sometimes holding it for a week straight, I would release in my sleep occasionally.

    I eat relatively healthy, a lot of fruits and veggies, some milk products, a fair amount of sushi (tuna/crab/salmon), lots of avocados and grapes. And a lot of water, never soda.

    I also have a vericocele in my left testicle and it is sensitive. I’ve felt that my pain was a hernia before but doctors say it’s not that, perhaps they missed something? I’d also make an uneducated guess at this pain being intestine, pancreas, or prostate related.

    Other notes: I had surgery on my right foot to correct my flat feet (was supposed to correct both, only did the right), therefore I feel my whole body is slightly off, my right leg seems to be slightly longer/taller… I grew up eating a poor diet (fast food). 3 great uncles (grandmas brothers) have had prostate cancer, 2 died from it.

    I’m entering a firefighting academy in 6 months and really want to be in GREAT health by then if possible.

    THANK YOU SO MUCH!

    • Jan Modric

      tonsoffun1001,

      1. I strongly recommend you to get the varicocele treated – to ease the pain and to prevent eventual problems with fertility. It’s only a small operation needed.

      2. Prostate cancer or benign prostate hyperplasia are not likely at 22 years of age, but theoretically there could be some other cause of prostate enlargement, like a chronic inflammation. Enlarged prostate can cause problems with urination, and passage of the stool, and a lump would be likely felt in the groin, behind the scrotum. A doctor can detect enlarged prostate during a rectal examination.

      3. A small intestinal hernia (inguinal hernia) can cause pain on the site where the lower abdomen continues to the leg. An obvious lump can be usually seen or palpated. It is important to know, that a hernia may temporarily retract (and be undetectable during examination or any investigation) and appear again, depending on the body position or bowel activity. I don’t want to confuse you, but theoretically a hernia could be a problem even if a doctor did not detect it at the time.

      4. Any mass in the rectum (not likely cancer in your age, but a polyp, hemorrhoids, a bulge from an enlarged prostate, diverticles or simply a constipation) may prevent complete emptying of the bowel. The stool remaining in the last part of the colon would be broken down by bacteria – this would yield gas and result in the distended abdomen on the left side. A rectal examination or rectoscopy or sigmoidoscopy can reveal such a mass. This would explain bloating and constipation, but less likely diarrhea…

      5. Intestinal parasites could be the cause, but I don’t know for how long do you have symptoms.

      6. A bile duct blocked with a gallstone, a liver or pancreatic disorder could all result in excessive gas and diarrhea, but you would very likely have an upper right or middle pain and other symptoms in these cases.

      What can you do on your own is:
      – try to prevent constipation by avoiding foods that can cause constipation and eating foods that may help to relieve constipation.
      – try a low-fructose diet for few days – symptoms relief would speak for fructose malabsorption
      – a lactose free diet for few days – it would help in lactose intolerance
      – a combination of above two, a low-FODMAP diet, which may help in irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
      – a gluten-free diet for about a week – it would help in celiac disease.

      In short: gas, constipation and diarrhea (and pain) are probably caused by obstruction of the last part of the colon or rectum, or a food-related disorder. Pain in the lower (but not upper) abdomen could be caused by an intestinal hernia. Symptoms progressing during the day, to me, speaks for a food intolerance…Having one leg longer could cause some back or side pain, but not bloating, gas…

  • Lottie

    hi there.. please may i have ur opinion..

    i am a 30yr old female

    i have been experiencing sharp stabbing pains to the LL of my stomach.. well i think it is more closer to the pelvic bone than navel (lower down)

    sometimes it is weak and doesn’t cause to much discomfort but then there are times like today where i practically double over in the middle of the supermarket aisle..

    no problems with BM

    here are some things i have noticed that have changed over the past month which led me to think i was pregnant , but i am not…

    – seem to go to the toilet a lot more frequently
    – very very bloated lately, stomach seems to balloon out more once finished eating
    – feeling like vomiting a lot
    – burp a lot
    – super tired all the time although it is a very huge effort trying to get to sleep and then when i do sleep it is very minimal which is upsetting seeing as i used to be able to sleep at a drop of a hat .
    – can never seem to get cool enough, i feel flustered and hot all the time
    – no blood or problem with urine
    – no constipation and diarrhea
    – pain under right breast
    – heartburn more frequent

    i have been to doctors but the doctors here are more like pen pushers who just want u out, they just say it is due to work related stress and to come back if it persists . i choose not to take prescription yet as they have no idea what is wrong. i don’t have a local GP so each person says something different.

    what would u say?

    • Jan Modric

      Lottie,

      burping, heartburn, bloating shortly after meals, frequent bowel movements and painful abdominal cramps in LL abdomen speak for gas built in your bowel from one or more of the following:
      – infection of the stomach with a bacterium Helicobacter pylori. Available tests: breath, blood and stool test, and endoscopy with biopsy.
      – gastroparesis (slow stomach emptying from various reasons). Dx is with stomach emptying test
      – intestinal parasites. Dx: stool test for parasites.
      – fructose malabsorption. Self-diagnosis: symptoms relief after few days of a low-fructose diet. Dx confirmed with a breath test
      – lactose intolerance. Self-diagnosis: lactose-free diet. Dx confirmed with a breath test
      – small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO), which is often related to fructose malabsorption or lactose intolerance. Dx: breath test
      – celiac disease. Self-diagnosis: symptoms relief after a week (or longer) on gluten-free diet. Dx confirmed with endoscopy/biopsy
      – Crohn’s disease (inflammation of the bowel)
      – gallstone or other cause of blockage of the bile duct. Main symptom: cramping upper right abdominal pain plus possibly most of symptoms you’ve mentioned. Dx: liver enzymes, ultrasound
      – a liver disorder with impaired bile flow into the intestine. Symptoms: upper right abdominal pain, jaundice, dark urine. Dx: liver enzymes, test for hepatitis, urine test, ultrasound
      – a pancreatic disorder. Symptoms: upper middle or left abdominal pain, diarrhea. Dx blood tests for pancreatic enzymes, ultrasound
      – irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Dx is given, when all other gastrointestinal disorders were excluded

      To help you narrow down the possible causes I would need to know:
      – When and how (suddenly, slowly) did your symptoms start?
      – Do you have any (measured) fever, even slight? Increased temperature can appear in H. pylori infection, intestinal parasites, hepatitis, Crohn’s disease
      – Do burps or gas have a sulfur smell? Excessive gas?
      – When you are not bloated, can you detect the lower edge of the liver, which have a solid consistency in contrast to the surrounding soft abdomen (this may be possible only if you are relatively slim)
      – Any skin rash or itch or jaundice or yellowish eye whites?

  • kitkat123

    My husband (25) has been having abdominal pain and pain up the rectum for over 2 1/2 weeks it started with him hhaving a very sore rectum and he say it feels like there is a peach stone up there, he was constipated for a just over a week and couldnt go, now he is going 3 time a day, this has now stoped and he is constipated again, some of his poo was coming out bright orange, his pain is mostly in the left side and lower middle, the pain doesn’t change or get worse after eatting, he went to see a doctor two days ago (he didn’t say about the orange poo) the felt his abdoman and said it was constipation and gave movicol, he has taken 2 doses so far, the pain is now getting worse and he is getting cold sweats, (no raised temp), he is taking paracetamol for the pain but it isnt helping, he is now layed up in bed, the doctor said they wont see him again until he has given the movicol chance to work, but his pain is getting worse. (he has no appedix)( he did have a different type of abdominal pain a while ago before our wedding and was given mebevrine) any help on what it might be or how i can make him more comfortable would be greatly appriciated

    • Jan Modric

      kitkat1123,

      the orange stool – this was only once or more times? It may be an important information, so no need to hide this from a doctor. Has he drunk any special beverage or eaten some food which could cause the orange stool? Also, was it really orange, or maybe yellow or red? It could be blood, so this should be checked by a stool test for blood. A very sore rectum and blood in the stool could be due to broken hemorrhoids or ulcers in the rectum – this can be checked by an investigation called a rectoscopy. I recommend him to maintain a soft stool by eating foods that can help to relieve constipation. But if pain does not go away, he should insist to have additional investigations ordered by a gastroenterologist.

  • kitkat123

    I fogot to say he has had no diarrhea and has back pain and when the abdo pain get worse sometimes it make his breating painful

    thank you for your time

  • kitkat123

    The orange stool happened, just one time they were small pellet like and were in the middle of the motion and have not happened since, they were a very bright orange like the colour of the fruit, he has not passed them since but all his stools are now pellet like. He hadn’t eaten/drank anything we can think of that could of changed the colour. We will start on the soft stool diet today,
    thank you for your advice

    • Jan Modric

      kitkat123,

      bright orange stool appeared only once could be from some undigested food, like carrots or other, or from some food additive or vitamin supplements or medication… One possible cause for a sore rectum could be a rectal irritation due to passage of hard stools. Another cause could be a crack in the anus (anal fissure). Pellet-like stool means the stool is dry because water was absorbed from it during its long stay in the colon. Abdominal pain to the point where it causes difficulty breathing could be from gas built in the stomach – in this case his abdomen would be obviously distended. If he will try foods to have softer stools I have to mention that certain foods high in soluble fiber, like oats and legumes (beans, peas, lentils, soy) can produce quite some gas and could even aggravate his pain, so he should not eat these foods in large amounts. Here’s another list of foods that can aggravate constipation. He should also drink a sufficient amount of fluid, like plain or mineral water, vegetable juice, prune juice.

  • tonsoffun1001

    THANK YOU SO MUCH!

    I don’t know if you’re a doctor or what but I’m beyond thrilled to have found this site. You’ve provided me with more clear and the most abundant information I could have asked for. I will try all of these recommendations and discuss the possibilities when I speak with my doctor.

    The problems seem to have started when I was 16 and picked up a 50lb bag of sugar where I worked, but since then the issues have evolved, most recently the gas/bloating has become very apparent. The 50lb bag lifting injury is originally what made me think hernia.

    Once again, thank you for your opinions. I think it’s great that you are helping people with such uncomfortable conditions. :]

    • Jan Modric

      tonsoffun1001,

      if you have experienced some back or leg pain after lifting that bag, it could be from a bulging or herniated disc in your lumbar spine. Symptoms of such injury can lessen or disappear completely, and reappear years later due to an usual wear and tear or some banal event that irritates your back. It would be possible that a pinched spinal nerve due to a bulging disc could cause the pain between your abdomen and leg. Dx of a spinal disc injury can be confirmed by a CT or MRI of the lower spine. Pain (after lifting the bag) in the lower abdomen, but not in the back, buttocks or back of the leg would speak for a hernia, though.

      You have provided a good summary of your symptoms, but I recommend you to check this personal medical history questionnaire, which can help you recall eventual additional symptoms or circumstances, and have the whole thing written down on a paper when speaking with any doctor. I recommend you to start with what is obvious: treating varicocele, adjusting the diet to prevent constipation, maybe having some of mentioned diet trials. Your personal doctor can perform a rectal examination at any time. If the pain, bloating and diarrhea will still persist then you can proceed with some investigations. I want to say, no need to jump on all possible investigations at once. I’m not a doctor, but I have finished a medical faculty.

  • Donald Hanson

    Having pain in left side about rib high. I have a history of kidneys stones and this feels like that but its lasting a while. Two weeks. Also, if I lay on my side, either side, the pain increases significantly. Had a CT, have a 4 mm in left kidney but worried there could be something else. This is abnormally long for me.

    • Jan Modric

      Donald Hanson,

      where exactly is the pain located (in inches from a midline), does it appear and disapper, like in several minutes or hours long cramps? Any abdominal bloating or excessive gas, is the area tender to touch? Urinary stones can lodge somewhere within the kidney or ureter and trigger painful cramps.

  • Mona

    I am 33yrs old ….i was treated for renal TB 4yrs back, after that i was ok but sometimes urinated frequently…but from last month i am having lower left abdominal pain radiating at the left lower back and left thigh….i saw a doctor who gave me some urine test, ultrasound and X ray to be performed and all the results r normal….well i have constipation as well…what’s wrong don’t know ,pls help me

    • Jan Modric

      Mona,

      constipation itself can cause crampy pains in the lower abdomen, so I recommend you to try to maintain soft stools by avoiding foods that may cause constipation. Is your abdomen distended or tender to touch? One cause of left abdominal pain could be an urinary stone lodged within the left ureter.

  • yeaahmon

    my friend has this problem with her stomach, it makes this weird noise sometimes, she feels like it has some sort of gas on the left side below the rib. it happens most times. HELP!

    • Jan Modric

      yeaahmon,

      there are several causes of gas built in the bowel. Does he/she burp excessively, has loose stools, or is constipated? Are noises worse shortly after meals and relieved by bowel movements?

      Examples of causes:
      – food intolerances, such as fructose malabsorption, lactose intolerance, celiac disease or food allergy
      – irritable bowel syndrome
      – intestinal parasites
      – gallbladder, liver or pancreatic disorder
      ….

  • Pattie A

    Hi Jan, Hoping I could get your opinion. White 55yr female – post menopausal. Had abcessed appendix removed 6 yrs ago. I was diagnosed with Divertiulosis about 3 1/2 yrs ago. I have had 2 attacks with higher fever, lots of pain and cramping –treated with antibiotics. Since the two ‘major’ attacks, I have learned to manage my diet to reduce attacks. When I do feel one coming one — my usual regimen is to switch to low residue diet, take advil, take aloe vera concentrate and rest — and this has been working great. Except… until this last one which started around noon on Dec 2nd. with a lot of bloating — couldn’t eat much the rest of the day.
    My symptoms
    – I have extreme tenderness and pain when I push on the area surrounding (to the front) of my left hip bone. If I don’t push on the area, I don’t have the pain… only some mild discomfort.
    – lowgrade fever.
    – not really having any ‘normal’ diverticulitis type cramping,
    – but some gas.
    – bm’s -have had two – but one result of laxative I took eve. of Dec 3rd (which worked nice) . 2nd one this morning — small. bm’s soft, but normal in color.

    Do you think the painful area (when I push on it) around the left hip bone – will that go away in time ?… or is that indication of infection/something to see the doctor about ? Is there something I can do at-home to help.
    Thanks Jan .Pattie
    I don’t know what

    • Jan Modric

      Pattie A,

      the low-grade fever can speak for an infection or maybe overgrowth of otherwise normal colonic bacteria. One of these bacteria is Clostridium difficile, which can, when overgrown, be dangerous. One typical symptom of Cl-diff overgrowth (but probably not always present) is a barnyard smell of gas and stool. Diagnosis is with a stool test for Cl-diff toxin. Pain is probably from gas or stool built in the sigmoid colon, but fever is likely from an infection. I’m not aware of any reliable remedy to treat intestinal infections.

      Bacterial food poisoning would likely cause constant diarrhea, intestinal parasites can cause very different symptoms…I could list more possible causes…but the point is that it would be good to get rid of the stool that has probably stuck in the sigmoid colon, and the fever, since eventual infection or bacterial overgrowth could worsen suddenly.

  • Pattie A

    Hi Jan — thank you for your followup and information. Do you think it would be useful to try an enema to remove the trapped stool ?

    • Jan Modric

      Pattie A,

      a low-grade fever, if it still persists is a symptom of an infection, bacterial overgrowth or inflammation. Enema would not likely help to resolve any of them, but removing the stool from the colon is not a bad idea. I would try with foods that have a mild laxative effect, like a mineral water high in magnesium, prune juice and such. If a low-grade fever or other symptoms persist, you may ask a doctor for a stool test for Clostridium difficile toxin.

  • tish

    I am a 31 year old female. I had had no health problems other than endometriois up until about a year ago. At that time I started having a dull pain and possibly slight swelling in my upper left side, right under my bottom two ribs. After many tests (ultrasound, blood, urine, etc) a doctor thought I might have shingles and sent me home to wait for a rash to appear. The pain pretty went away eventually and about 2 months later I got a horribly itchy rash from the neck down on both sides of my body. A dermatologist prescribed medication for exzema. During this same time, I starting having a whole list of odd symptoms, some of which include migraines, frequent double vision, extreme fatigue, night sweats and a low temperature. After a bunch more tests (MRI of head, full hormone/blood work, etc) came back normal, I decided to try a naturepath. He did an extensive food allergy test. Results show I am sensitive to corn, wheat, cane sugar and most meats. After two weeks of diet change, many of my symptoms improved. I thought I had finally found a solution! That was about 6 months ago and I watch my diet pretty closely. Then, out of nowhere, I started having the same dull pain in my side again about 8 days ago. I had cheated on my diet a bit the night before at a party, so I thought that was causing it, though since I have been aware of my food sensitivities, I have not correlated that sort of side pain with cheating. In any case, I figured it would pass. But by monday morning, the pain suddenly became so bad I couldn’t even move and I had tears rolling down my face. It was right under my two bottom ribs on the left side and occasionally radiated into my back. I went to urgent care, where both blood & urine tests came back normal. The doctor opted to not do any imaging since I had had “a similiar problem last year.” They gave my some heavy duty pain killer and sent me home. Over the next few days the pain decreased somewhat and became more of a burning pain mainly in the front with ocassional sharp pains. It also spread down my left side, though to a lesser degree. I had no appetite and eating possibly made it worse. Also my bowel movements were pretty sparse with sort of round hard pieces and mucus. So thursday I made an appt with my regular doctor. She had me take a laxative and things seemed to move through, but I still didn’t feel well and had a slight fever. When I went in she did a physical exam, sent me for an xray and prescribed an anti-inflamitory and a muscle relaxant. She was a little concerned about a lack of gas pattern in my colon, but the radiologist was not concerned. She now wants to do a rectal exam. I haven’t gone back yet, because I am feeling a little frustrated with every test coming back normal and yet I still have upper left pain/burning, a slight fever, no appetite, very small bowel movements and I think I might be starting to feel kind of itchy, but more the inside. I have been trying to eat more (including plenty of prune juice)and it just seems to make things worse. Does anyone have any suggestions on which direction to go. Should I wait and see (money is also a factor)? Should I go back in for the rectal exam? Are there any specific conditions I can research?
    Thanks in advance for any advice.

    • Jan Modric

      tish,

      would you say the rash appeared in a band-like or diffuse pattern? For how long has the rash persisted? Pain under/below the lower ribs plus pain on the left side may arise from the colon. Problems having a bowel movement and mucus my speak for a colonic disorder, like a Crohn’s disease – this can be confirmed by a colonoscopy. Intestinal parasites would be also possible. During a rectal examination, a doctor can check only the last few inches of the rectum and whatever could be found there it wouldn’t likely cause the symptoms you have. Rectal examination is done to exclude a mass that could obstruct the bowel (a colorectal cancer is not likely at your age). Naturopaths often find some “food intolerances” and I’m not sure how reliable this is.

  • Mona

    thanks for ur response…..no nothing as such and more over my Xray reports r normal which might rule out the possibility of stone…..today i had pain just left side of my naval……don’t know whats happening, sometimes i have a sharp pain which arise from left groin area and moves to the area under left breast for few seconds and gone…pls help me

    • Jan Modric

      Mona,

      sharp pain traveling from the groin to under the left breast may arise from the organ that have the same course – these are left ureter and descendant part of the colon. Sometimes, urinary stones are not dense enough to be detected by an x-ray. But specific substances found in urine may raise a suspicion for urinary stones. A disorder of the descendant colon or even a simple constipation could cause the pain on the left side. So, either you try to get rid of constipation by avoiding foods that may constipate, or ask your doctor about appropriate investigation.

  • tish

    Jan,
    Thanks for responding. The rash was not band-like. It started on the left side of my chest and then gradually spread all over the surface of my torso, arms and legs on both sides. It was red, fairly flat had wheals… kind of similiar to hives or heat rash. Then it kind of turned more brownish. It was extremely itchy and any warmth (ie taking a shower) was painful. It lasted about 3 months and then went away around Jan 2010. I tried a prescribed topical ointment which didn’t help and then near the tail end of it, I did take prednisone for about 5 days, but had to stop because of the side effects. My skin is now feeling sensitive again, kind of like just before I got the rash before. But no new rash has broken out. As far as my side, the pain is still there and has not improved. It is a constant burning pain now with frequent sharp pains that I could almost describe as internally itchy. It is mainly in the front under my left ribs and in that same area in my back. It hurts to put any pressure on that side. I have been making myself eat even though I feel “full.” I feel a little nauseous, but have not vomited. My bowel movements seem softer but are still small amounts. Aside from when I took the laxative, I have definitely not had any diarrhea problems. Also, last year they did do an upper GI that came back normal (one of the other strange symptoms was feeling like I had a gumball stuck in my throat, this also eventually went away on it’s own). Would Crohn’s show up on the recent x-ray I had done? If it is a problem with my colon, should I make any adjustments to what I am eating? Could it be something with my pancreas? I will be going back in to see my doctor later this week, so aside from a possible colonoscopy, are there any other tests I should request? I am so glad I came across this site! And I really appreciate your help Jan!

    • Jan Modric

      tish,

      A plain X-ray or upper GI (X-ray with barium swallow) would not show Crohn’s disease. A lower GI (X-ray with barium enema) could show prominent changes in the colon in Crohn’s disease. In any case, when a Crohn’s disease is suspected a colonoscopy is needed to confirm diagnosis, though.

      Rash + internal itch + nausea + abdominal pain and distension and soft stools could be due to:
      – intestinal parasites. Diagnosis is confirmed by a stool test for parasites
      – Crohn’s disease. Diagnosis is confirmed by a colonoscopy.
      – celiac disease. Diagnosis is strongly suspected by symptoms relief after a gluten-free diet, and confirmed by a blood test or upper endoscopy with a duodenal biopsy.
      – some other cause..

  • Maria

    Hi Jan,
    I’m a 32-year old female, and have been generally constipated for the last year. Almost every morning for years now, just after waking up, I get very crampy for about 10-15 minutes, and can’t function properly until it passes. I can easily go 5-6 days without a bowel movement, sometimes up to 10. I’ve been given a mixture of laxatives and suppositories, but they make the cramps worse.
    Yesterday, from about 3pm until I went to bed at 11pm, I had the most horrendous cramps. The pain was on my lower left side, and all I could do was clutch my belly, and not move. Any movement, like coughing, lifting my legs etc would make it a lot worse. During the worst pains, I couldn’t breathe properly. The pain was constant, though every 3-4 minutes it would become worse, like a very sharp, unbearable pain, which would then become a bit more bearable after about a minute.
    I was in agony, but there was no way I would go to an emergency room on a Friday night, as it would involve a wait of at least 4 hours.
    I’ve woken up this morning, and the pain is still there, in exactly the same place, my lower left side, but it’s a dull ache, and quite bearable now. I just hope it doesn’t get worse throughout the day.
    I’m having some problems standing up straight, but other than that, it’s not too bad right now.
    Oh, and my last bowel movement was 2 days ago, it was a solid, rock hard stool, the size of a large golf ball, and took about 15 minutes for me to pass. Please help!

    • Jan Modric

      Maria,

      it’s possible that all the pains are caused by cramps in the large colon. Colon wakes up in the morning and starts to move – so this is often an ideal time to have a bowel movement. It’s this colon wakening that probably cause cramps in your case.

      Physical activity, sufficient amount of fluid, coping with stress, avoiding foods that tend to constipate and eating foods that make stool soft and bulky can help prevent constipation. Some medications or supplements may also constipate. Additionally, there could be something in the last part of the colon (in the lower left abdomen), like diverticles, which could aggravate constipation. So, try with abovementioned measures, and if no relief, you can visit a gastroenterologist who may propose some investigation, like sigmoidoscopy to check for diverticles.

  • lilbitdali

    Hi my brother just starting some sharp pains lower abdmen and left side. Said he was sitting and bent a little that’s when the sharp pain started and hasn’t stopped since. Its been over an hour now. I told him to take ibuprofen and lay down. He says the pain lowered a little but still hurts a lot. I read up and I think its kindey stones. Any home remedies? He has no insurance. 30 year old male. Or any suggestions?

    • Jan Modric

      lilbitdali,

      where exactly was his pain (in inches from the navel and hip bone)? Pain aggravated by bending is more likely due to gas in the bowel or intestinal hernia, than kidney stones. In hernia, a lump can be usually felt in the groin (where abdomen continues to the leg). Gas built in the bowel would likely result in abdominal distension maybe more pronounced on the left) and flatulence. Did he have any bowel problems, like constipation, before this pain started? Was he doing some physical work at the time?

  • Maria

    Thanks for your advice Jan. My diet could definitely be better so I’m already actively starting to make changes to my diet. I’ve also made an appointment with my doctor, and hopefully I’ll find some ways to manage this in the long-term.
    Your service is brilliant, by the way. Thanks very much!
    Maria

  • Alys

    Hi my boyfriend had an episode Sunday, after he woke up and went to get dressed he experienced sharp abdominal pain that folded him in half and he fell to his knees. He sat for 10 minutes and then decided to go to work anyway. He was worse when he got home, his stomach was hurting a lot on the left midsection and he said “his butt hurts”. He is not constipated and did not notice any change in stool coloration but he is barely able to walk and is hunched and twisted. His whole left side hurts and his anal area. He can’t work. I am pushing him to go to ER but he is stubborn and says it will pass. Please help me with advice on what this could be. Thank you.

    • Jan Modric

      Alys,

      the only “usual” cause of such strong pain I can think of could be constipation , but since you say he is not constipated, I agree with you – he should visit a doctor. A kidney stone trapped in the ureter and intestinal hernia are just two examples of a sudden severe pain in the lower left abdomen, and both should be considered seriously.

  • Alys

    Thank you so much Jan 🙂

  • chelsea

    Hello i’m a 21 year old female and i have some questions… about two weeks ago i started having some cramping in my lower left side, just below the bottom of my rib cage and my tummy is really bloated. i’m not have troubles with my bowel movements. My last menstrual cycle i was a 8 days late and when i finally did start to bleed it was very very light and only lasted two days. I have never felt this kind of pain before, i rarely get cramps or bloating when im getting my period. Please help i have no idea whats going on and my dr’s cant seem to find anything either…
    Thanks

    • Jan Modric

      chelsea,

      if your period is otherwise regular, I recommend you to visit a gynecologist. Bloating is probably from gas built in your bowel – this could be caused by intestinal parasites, liver, bile duct or pancreatic disease: a gastroenterologist can give you a diagnosis.

  • nikky

    Hi, my husband has been having a dull upper left abdominal pain which gives him a feeling of fullness. The pain comes and goes and we initially suspected an ulcer though scans did not support that. He practically leaves on pain relievers. Please what do you think is wrong?

    NB: HE was once diagnosed with Hepatitis B but the doctor advised that his immune system might be able to fight it and subsequent tests showed it was gone.

    • Jan Modric

      nikky,

      an ultrasound and, if necessary, a CT or MRI in combination with appropriate blood tests can detect most organic causes of pain and fullness in the upper left abdomen (pancreatitis, enlarged spleen…). Pain arising from the stomach would be also likely felt in the upper middle abdomen, and pain from the liver under and below the right ribs. When all tests are negative, the most likely cause is gas built in the colon, especially when pain is not constant. Such gas can be caused by constipation, food intolerances, intestinal disorders, liver, gallbladder, bile duct or pancreatic disorders. A gastroenterologist can, after exclusion of other disorders, recommend him some diet trials to confirm/exclude certain food intolerances, like celiac disease, fructose malabsorption, lactose intolerance.

  • Kailey

    I have been having chronic pain in my lower left abdomen. For the most part it is almost always present. It feels like an intense period cramp that just lingers in one spot. Sometimes I think it’s just gas but not so sure….. I did 2 ultrasounds (internal & external) a few months back and everything was fine. I think this pain started around the time I got my IUD out in a year ago. I make regular visits to my OBGYN to make sure it didn’t shift or isn’t puncturing anything and things like that. It’s always smack dab where it needs to be. Running out of options as to what this pain could be caused from, can’t be healthy to take this much Advil :$ Thanks!

    • Jan Modric

      Kailey,

      an IUD itself, no matter how well placed, is a common cause of abdominal and other problems.

  • jwells89

    Hello my name is jarod im a 21yr old male i have been have slight pain but major discomfort had ct scan and ultrasound and some blood test everything but a slightly enlarged spleen and slight enlarged lymphnodes at the time lymphomia ruled out cuz not big enough or enlarged to consider the discomfort comes and goes and i get bloated out of no where at times the discomfort rotates but its mainly alwasy righton the bottom of left ribcage if i pust on rib i can feel pressure slight pain please help and ideas been going on for weeks

    • Jan Modric

      jwells89,

      a common cause of pain and bloated feeling below the left rib cage is gas built in the colon. Causes of excessive gas include intestinal parasites, food intolerances (gluten-free, lactose-free or low-fructose diet may help, depending on the type of intolerance), irritable bowel syndrome (a low-FODMAP diet may help), liver, bile duct or pancreatic disorders (most of which can be confirmed/excluded by appropriate blood tests). Here you can read more about abdominal bloating.

  • KeyesR

    Hello,
    I am a 16 yr old girl and have just recently been having left abdominal problems. It starts just under my rib, and ends 3″ below my belly button. If i press it hurts badly, but without pressing, the pain it okay. if i engage my muscles, it does not hurt. I don’t know if these factors come into play: i had a big unhealthy meal yesterday, i swam rigorously for 2 hrs, i did pass a bowel movement the previous night and urinate without any problems. thank you!

    • Jan Modric

      KeyesR,

      the meal could cause some constipation and bloating which could result in abdominal distension, which could be painful upon pressing. Swimming could result in muscular pain. In both cases, pain should lessen considerably in few days. Bacterial food poisoning would very likely result in diarrhea, but even this usually goes away in few days on its own. f the pain becomes suddenly worse or lasts for more than a week, a doctor should give you a diagnosis.

  • jjdoe00

    started my period on December 1st (a few days early), it’s now december 21st. It started with it’s regular moderate flow, then 6-7 days later I started with brown discharge. Which I usually get towards the end, so I figured it was almost over. Only it wasn’t. The brown discharge continued for a week, becoming a lot thicker, and texturized, sludgy I guess. The past week my period has alternated between the brown sludge and regular bright red blood, it becomes heavy to light at random. I have pretty bad pain unlike my usual cramps. In my lower back, lower abdomen and hips. Also the tops of my thighs, mainly my left upper thigh. It’s a constant dull aching cramping, but very pain-full.

    Please can anyone offer any help, any insight? Also I do not have insurance, so I haven’t been to a dr. And I’m in my early 20’s. My flow this year has been pretty regular since this summer, coming within a couple of days of the same date each month lasting between 5-7 days.

    • Jan Modric

      jjdoe00,

      I can’t offer any other advice except, please visit a gynecologist to get a diagnosis and proper treatment and to prevent eventual serious complicaions.

  • msparks

    hello im 23 i keep having pain in my lower left side of back and on the exact opposite side on my abdomin.it feels like its pulsating back and forth squeezing. im in pain 24/7 I went to the doctors and they said nothing is wrong and i know something is.I tryed taking cranberry pills i thought it might be a uti it didnt help . my urine smells weird it has gotten to the point were i cant hold it any more i just go It hurts when i stand sit when i do anything and i dont know how much i can take. I keep going to the doctors and they say nothing is wrong. I hope they are not saying that because i dont have insurance. please help me ive lost all hope and its killing me.

    • Jan Modric

      msparks,

      smelly urine could actually be cased by an UTI, kidney or other disorder, but remedies won’t likely help, so ask for urine tests as soon as possible.

  • playnpink

    Was on the antibiotic Levaquin for a severe sinus infection but stopped taking it after 5 days because got horribly sick with my stomach (even tho taking the probiotic Align, drinking Kefir, and eating yogurt.). Went back to ENT few days later, still feeling awful after taking the meds, and he put me on Cipro. But, he said before i start the cipro, i should take a week to try to get my stomach happy again. During the week I was supposed to ‘recover’ from the antibiotics, I developed a constant, mostly dull pain, on left side of lower abdomen. Im worried because it is in the exact same spot whenever i feel the pain. This pain has lasted about a week now and dont know if its all just due to my bad sinus infection which ive had for over a month, or is Another infection caused by the antibiotics. Im now on the 4th day of a 2 week prescription on the Cipro, and im trying to find different probiotic supplements to help my very sensitive stomach. What type of probiotics are good for your stomach when on antibiotics, since there are SO many different kinds of probiotics to take? And should i be concerned of this abdominal pain, when i know my body is just overly sensitive?

    • Jan Modric

      playnpink,

      I don’t know what is happening in your lower left abdomen, but one potentially serious side effects of antibiotics is overgrowth of Clostridium difficile bacteria, usually in the last part of the colon. Such a bacterial overgrowth often results in an “antibiotic associated diarrhea” (AAD) with a characteristic barnyard smell of stool and gas. A stool test for Clostridium difficile is available. Probiotics containing a yeast Sacharomyces boulardii were shown to be effective in AAD. Yogurt and kefir contain much fewer bacteria than probiotic capsules, so I don’t know if they can provide any additional effect.

      Other possibilities would be: an allergy to a certain antibiotic, infection triggered irritable bowel syndrome or stomach/bowel irritation as a side effect of an antibiotic. If symptoms do not go away in a short time, you can ask a doctor about a stool test for Clostridium difficile.

  • Ahriya

    12/27/10

    Dear Jan, This is Ahriya (the 15 year old)once again. It seems that things have been getting worse. So let me give you an overview of what’s happened since I’ve talked to you last. So I came to you in October and told you about the 3 weeks of lower abdomen pressure/discomfort. Then I told you about the lower left pains and the freqent urge to urinate.
    The positive side to this is that for the most part those symptoms have subsided.
    The worse part is that new symptoms have taken the place of them. So let me start describing them to you.

    Symptoms since November
    -I kept feeling this little weird sensation about 3 inches left to my belly button. It feels like a tugging or pulling sensation about the size of a quarter. Very bothersome. It doesnt hurt very bad, but it is just very annoying and it makes me worry. It hasnt happened lately but it happened multiple times throuought November.
    -I started having pain like somewhere by my tailbone or anus. It’s like a shooting pain. It comes and goes and it hurts fairly bad. I can’t tell whether it’s shooting from my anus to my rectum or if it’s just tailbone pains. It comes every couple days, and It can come if I’m just sitting there not moving, or it comes if I’m in the car and we go over a big bump.
    -This symptom is worse of all. I’ve been experiencing a sick, sluggish feeling. It came during the Thanksgivning holiday for about a week, then left. And now it’s Christmas holiday and I’ve been feeling just sick, sluggish, weak, and it feels like I have less energy. The best I can describe it is that when it comes, i feel semi-light headed and kinda sick to my stomach. My throat feels icky like when I have a stomach flu. BUT… the weird thing is I still get hungry and I can eat, but I just still have the same weird sickish feeling. I can still walk around and omit energy, but I don’t want to be active at all when I feel this. It’s a very scary thing.

    I think of all the things I could have and it just scares me. I still haven’t gone to the doctors, my dad is struggling to bring income in and I’m scared, Jan. I’m scared to get a disease this young. I see all my friends and they seem happy and healthy. Some times I wonder if it’s all psychological, but I’m sure it’s not. I hate feeling sick. Please help me. What does it sound like I have? Be honest. I really think I could have cancer with all this pain and tiredness and feeling ill.
    I’m just so scared. Thanks for your help. Thank you so much.

    • Jan Modric

      Ahriya,

      it’s not likely you will get an exact diagnosis or treatment recommendation on the internet.

      I’m not a doctor, but I have finished a medical faculty , so I can provide some educated explanation:

      First, I can’t exclude any disorder from here, also cannot confirm any. My first thought were intestinal parasites. The next thoughts were a Crohn’s disease (inflammatory bowel disease) and celiac disease. These disorders can all cause the whole range of symptoms from abdominal gurgling, frequent urination, lightheadedness and sluggishness. I can’t exclude food intolerances.

      Cancer does not sound very likely to me. Colorectal cancer is extremely rare under 40; symptoms in small intestinal lymphoma and other abdominal cancers would not likely come and go as in your case. Pain from ovarian cancer would be probably felt lower in the pelvis.

      I’m not aware of any safe and effective home remedies or over-the-counter medications to treat any of mentioned disorders.

      What you can do is:
      – Write down all your symptoms, details about stool, period in a time line in a concentrated factual manner and talk with your parents. Then you can decide together to call a doctor of a general practice about the cost of a physical examination, stool test for parasites, blood in the stool, and basic blood tests. The doctor can then decide if you need to see a specialist, such as gastroenterologist or gynecologist.

  • biju

    a pain at lower left abdomen when i was working and shivering inside my left abdomen what is the reason?

    • Jan Modric

      biju,

      I can’t comment that from so little information you’ve given.

  • swapna

    Hi, I’m a pretty healthy person, who works out regularly. In the last 3 months, I had pain on the left side of the belly button. I had it only 3 times in the last 3 months. I had the pain in mid november the first time, after 10 days, I had it once again and the third time is today, Dec 29. It is usually in the upper left but sometimes starts on the lower left and passes to the upper left. It is usually restricted to about 2-3 inches above the belly button. This is where a fold appears on my tummy when I sit. It is also where my rib cage almost touches the belly button when I sit. The pain sometimes also passes to my back but just stays in the lower back. The pain is not constant but it is like a stab and decreases gradually, all in less than half a minute. I have to poop regularly on such days, almost everytime the pain hits. I noticed that it is usually on days when I had a large stool in the morning and my stomach feels almost empty and the pain starts almost 4-5 hr after that. I’m usually fine after I sleep and it is completely gone the next day. My diet is usually rice and beans, lentils, vegetables and yogurt. I would appreciate if you can tell the reason for the pain.
    Also, I’m taking Trichoton and Xerge for Vitamin supplements which are rich in Vitamin C.

    • Jan Modric

      swapna,

      two reasons of such a pain I can think of are cramps in the ureter, for example due to urinary stones, or cramps in the colon, either from constipation, irritation by certain foods, or partial bowel obstruction, which could be caused by a polyp, for example. Neurological causes are less likely, but I can’t exclude them. If the pain occurs again, you can visit your primary doctor, who can, after examination, decide if you need to see a specialist and which one.

  • James

    I am 51 yrs young and having this sudden momentary pinching episode in my chest that goes away with sleep not just rest. I have CERD and Premature ventricular contraction. I also have a 1in bleb at the top of my right lung and .25in on my left. I have had my appendix and gall bladder taken out. I really hope you can guide me to finding the cause of this sudden episodes.

    • Jan Modric

      James,

      sometimes connections (adhesions) made of fibrous tissue related to the blebs can develop between the inner and outer lung membrane. When these connections are stretched or broken, they may cause pinching pains in the related parts of the chest – in the front, back or side. Pains arising from the heart usually occur in the center of the chest, behind the breastbone and can radiate into the left arm. From your description I can’t say is it more likely that pains come from lungs or heart or even chest wall muscles. If pains increase in frequency or intensity or they affect your life or are a new symptom you can speak about this with your doctor.

  • Karen

    I am a 52yo female. I’ve been having pain in my lower left abdomen for ~2 weeks. The pain is somewhat crampy, occasionally sharp, and varies in intensity for no apparent reason. The center moves from just below and inside my hip bone to just above and outside it. It is not affected by food nor bowel movement.

    Discomfort has woken me at night on 2 occasions — in these instances, the pain was accompanied by what seemed to be heartburn and mild nausea. However, the time of being awoken was ~6 hours after my last meal.

    I’ve had an endometrial ablation (3 years ago) and an appendectomy (in my teens).

    No fever. Bowel movements are normal. I do not take any medicines. Exercise regularly, eat well, normal weight.

    Any ideas? I am at a loss.

    • Jan Modric

      Karen,

      what you’ve described, sounds like gastrointestinal symptoms to me. I really can’t pinpoint the cause, but a partial colon obstruction (might have something with endometriosis or adhesions) would be possible. I strongly recommend you to visit a gastroenterologist.

  • Teresa

    I was told after having an cat-scan that I was constipated on Christmas day & had an yeast infection(urine sample). Every time I eat my stomach start to hurt and pain in left side. The ER doctor gave me miralax and diflucan. I am still having pain. I can’t eat nor drink water without any pain.

    • Dr. Chris

      Hi Teresa

      You should have followed up with your regular family doctor after the ER visit so further investigation and assessment could have been done. You should return to the ER if the pain is very severe. Try to see a doctor as soon as possible.

  • beeincharge

    I am a 33 year old female with left side pain. Sometimes the pain is a spasm, sometimes a sharp stitch or shooting pain, sometimes a dull ache more towards the back over my left kidney. Blood tests do not show infection and show normal kidney function, urine tests normal, renal and abdominal ultrasounds were normal. I have seen 3 GI specialists, none think the issue is GI, and have not ordered any GI tests, although the pain really feels like it’s coming from left descending colon, but according to the doctors I have seen, doesn’t fit the pattern for a colon issue. Variety of foods, caffeine, doesn’t seem to make a difference. Bowel habits are same as usual. I had a t-spine MRI recently, after the pain began, it showed a schmorl node at T-9 and T-9. My GI identified a knot in my back at T-10, and was not aware that I had undergone an MRI. The pain wraps laterally over my left kidney and around into my left side at this same level. When it hurts, which is about 75% of each day, it doesn’t feel like muscle pain. All of my doctors have given up on me and don’t have answers. They say MSK pain and that it stems from my spine and the muscles attached to my spine. What I find strange is that my spine doesn’t hurt at all, neither do the muscles attached to the spine. The pain is more deep inside, like an organ, and mostly directly in my side. It came on very acutely about 8 weeks ago. I had not been doing any physical activity in the days prior. To make matters more puzzling, the exact identical thing happened in my right side 18 months ago, same position, T-9 – T-10, same pains, but in the right side, not muscular, seemed like internal pain. At that time I had an abdominal MRI, 2 CT scans, HIDA scan and a colonoscopy. None of the tests revealed anything. It took 18 months to heal, within a few weeks of it being gone, it started in the left side. What is this????? Doctors are throwing painkillers at me because they don’t know what else to do. Is it possible to have muscle pain that feels like organ pain? Also I have neurological issues that are still under investigation, so some doctors have theorized it being a nerve issue, or a “brain sending false signals” issue. The pain in my side is so sharp and debilitating, and everyone is stumped. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.

    • Dr. Chris

      Hi Beeincharge

      It is possible for the intervertebral muscles to be affected without feeling pain on the spine itself. We cannot answer your questions conclusively as only your doctor(s) are familiar with the your case history and the result of the investigations. From your report, it appears to be quite a complex case and considering that the various specialists are “baffled” by what is going on, we could not offer any advice beyond this.

      It is possible that the lumbar spine is also affected and therefore an MRI should be considered. At this point you should be seeing a neurologist if you have not already done so. The lack of clarity about the “neurological issues” makes it difficult to comment further and this is why it is essential for you to communicate with your family doctor although various medical specialists are also working on this case.

  • beeincharge

    I almost think, after looking at a diagram, that the pain would be coming from lower than T-10 if my spine was involved, I’m thinking maybe L-1 region. My lumbar spine has not been scanned via MRI. Again, no spine pain though, just in the side. Muscle pain would lead me to believe I would feel it when bending, but I don’t, however, I do feel it when I sit or lay down, when the area is compressed. Also, the pain had started to lessen before Christmas, but then I caught a cold and spent a week sneezing and blowing my nose, then the pain started to come back. It came on strong after shivering also. I don’t understand why the pain seems to be part but not all muscular related, part but not all nerve related, and part but not all organ related.

  • kimberly T

    i am a 24 yr old female. stopped taking my birth control pills about 3 weeks ago, due to i am going for surgery in february to get my tubes cut. stopped taking my pills just to see if i would get pregnant or not before my surgery. i am still undecided if i want to go through with the surgery or not. i had my period the 3rd week of december, normal 4 days. not too heavy or light. go through 1 pad a day. i started getting a pain on my left side by my hip bone. wasnt too bad, hurt more when i went to the bathroom. bowel movements and urinating were normal till i started getting the pain. then i had pressure kind of when having a bowel movement and was constipated, pee was kinda hot. took advil the first day. second day didnt notice the pain at all but same symptoms when going to the bathroom. the third day the pain came back. symptoms the same. had sex with my bf later that night. afterwards had pain in my lower abdomen all over. lasted about 15 minutes. thought it to just be cramps. pain never came back. then the next day around dinner time, i went pee and noticed blood when wiping. lasted 3 days, was very light but enough to wear a pad. was brownish first day, then red. the third day was heavier. thought it to be too early to have my period, but i had stopped taking my birth control pills after 2 years and i cant remember how my periods went before. never went to the doctors through all of this. was looking online, says it could be miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy, hemerrhoids. any ideas on what could have caused the pain? very rarely do i get cramps or pain before my period.could the bleeding just be early menstruation due to stopping birth control?

    • Dr. Chris

      Hi Kimberly T

      There is a host of possibilities that could be the cause of the pain. It is difficult to say and you need to see your doctor. Remember that when you stop the pill, the bleed that follows is not a “true” period in that you may not be ovulating. Instead the sudden change in hormone levels triggers the process which is often out of the norm for your cycle (prior to starting the pill). A miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy and so on are all a possibility. So is an infection of the vagina and/or urinary tract. Your doctor will need to be examined by a doctor who can diagnose the cause.

  • kimberly T

    sorry forgot to put when i started getting the pain. it was about 2 weeks after my period.

    • Dr. Chris

      Kimberly T,

      The pain may not be related to gynelogical causes and you therefore need to seek medical attention.

  • tabby

    when i bend to the right.. i have a sharp fast pain like someone just stabbed me but it goes away when i stand up in like 1 second. i am worried because i am only 13.. what can this be?

    • Dr. Chris

      Hi Tabby

      It is difficult to say. This could be due to muscle strain or nerve compression but the abdomen has many structures/organs which may also be affected and causing this pain. You should speak to your parent about seeing a doctor.

  • momof2

    I have been having pretty severe pain on and off the past several months. Under my left ribs closer to the middle near the breast plates. It is a very sharp pain that will last for several minutes sometimes a couple of days a part and other times a couple of times a day. The spot is also very tender to the touch. I haven’t noticed it changing with the foods I am eating. My bowel movements have been off this week. Very constipated. I drink water all day long and have even eaten a fiber bar the past three days. My appendix has already been removed and I had a hysterectomy in June so I began taking hormone replacements then. I have read things that said this increases chance of Gall Bladder Disease, but I thought the gall bladder was on the right side. I am 30 years old and other than my past female issues always been in good health. Thank you.

    • Dr. Chris

      Hi Momof2

      Given your age and the use of HRT, cardiac conditions are also a possibility. You therefore need to see a doctor immediately and possibly undergo a stress ECG of other tests that your doctor deems necessary. Yes, it could be related to gallstones or inflammation of the gallbladder (known as cholecystitis) but excluding a cardiac cause is the first priority. You can read more about the gallbladder location in this article : http://www.healthhype.com/gallbladder-location-anatomy-parts-function-pictures.html. It does cause upper middle abdominal pain/ central chest pain as well. Your doctor will advise your further because there are a host of other causes to consider as well.

  • LT

    I’am 26 years old with painfull gallstones,the last 2months I have had pain on the lower and upper right side of my abdomen,and sometimes on my mid right side,I’ve also been consipated ever since I’ve been diagnosed with gallstones,and I have alot of gas.I have in my liver area,could someone please tell me what they think,or could I have colon cancer,cause why do I have this pains in my gut,dont have to take painkillers for it but it hurts.

    • Dr. Chris

      Hi LT

      This is not an unusual presentation of gallstones. There is no need to assume colon cancer at this stage. The painkillers are only going to offer symptomatic relief and often cause or exacerbate your constipation. Gallstones are a VERY painful condition and has secondary effects on all parts of the gut. Speak to your doctor about gallstone and often gallbladder removal.

      You can read more on Symptoms of Gallstones and Gallstones Treatment.

  • AnnaGirl

    im having a lower abdominal pain, sometimes on the left sometimes on the right side, i thought that it was only menstrual cramps, but even after a week of my period the pain comes and go specially when i want to urinate, but im not having a hard time to urinate. when i went to my doctor, i had urinalysis, everything was normal except that there was a trace of blood, i also having a lower back pain. they thought it was only a uti so they gave me bactrim for 3 days, i bought my own strip test and still the result is that there’s blood cells in my urine but it only shows on the strip test, my urine looks normal though, sometimes its cloudy. and also have a suspicious lump on my left foot.

    • Dr. Chris

      Hi Annagirl

      Your symptoms, including the cloudy urine, is characteristic of a UTI. I would advise that you go back to your doctor and not try to monitor the progress of the treatment with home test strips and so on. Even though you have had a course of antibiotics, it is possible that the infection is progressing and another course may be required. You may need to have a urine culture done at this point as well as additional tests like an IV pyelogram. Go back to your doctor and report your symptoms and he/she may refer you to a urologist at this point. While UTIs are fairly common in women, it can lead to very serious complications if it is not treated and managed properly. Your doctor will need to track your progress and take the necessary steps.

      You can read more in these articles :
      1.Cloudy Urine
      2. Hematuria (blood in urine)

  • AnnaGirl

    im 28 yo. i really hope its not that serious

  • Mohammed Wasim

    Hi i m mohammed wasim age 27.i have left lover side stomach pain some time normal some time more.I was make x-ray when i was in india i took medicine n every thing was fine.doctor suggest me to don’t play cricket.After feeling normal i started again.Doctor told me there is pain in my vain so nothing to worry just u stop playing cricket for some time.Now i m feeling little bid pain what can i do can some one help me out pls.

    • Dr. Chris

      Hi Mohammed

      Abdominal pain is non-specific feature and it is difficult to comment without knowing what the doctor previously diagnosed or at least what medication he gave you at the time. The fact that he asked to stop your sport may mean that it was related to the muscles, joints or nerves. You should go back to your doctor and speak to him or consult with another doctor in your area who will assess you again. Pain in the vein is a bit confusing. It could be vasculitis, a clot, narrowing of the artery and so many other possibilities. Your doctor will be in a better position to advise your further.

  • ramym

    i woke up from 4 days with a dull pain in my far lower left abdomen and it hurts a lot when i press there. i dont have other symtoms.
    but before that i had this pain before but not for 4 days maybe for a an hour or so.

  • jgnz721

    My symptoms started about a year ago or probably longer. My adventure begun about 6 months ago. I experienced major chest pain while I was at work so I was rushed to the hospital (1of5 trips). So of course once I got to the hospital the had a full run up (EKG, xrays, CT scan, ultrasound, holter monitor, blood work, threadmill) everything came back fine. I was released and asked to schedule a follow up with my primary dr. I decided to schedule my follow up with the Dr who saw me at the hospital. All the pain continued so during my follow up visit with my Dr I explained to him that nothing had tally changed and that my pain around my lower abdomen had gotten worse and was radiating to my back. He came up with the conclusion that I was under a lot of stress and anxiety and prescribed me some xanax and paxil along with prilosec for the heartburn that these medicines were going to create. Several more weeks passed and no improvement, so my wife and I searched for a GI Dr because my abdomen pain had become constant with no relief. He scheduled a upper endoscopy, he discovered a very minor haital hernia and some minor errosion. He also took several samples around my abdomen to have biopsys. I have had several other visits with him and have yet to find out what’s going on with my belly, my symptoms are chronic left side abdominal pain that radiates to my back around my rib cage, spasms around that area, leg pain, shoulder pain, neck pain, sometimes headache, acid refux, stomach growling, chest pain left sife, and hear burn. I have had an ultrasound of my abdomen which didn’t show anything abnormal. This pain has me bedridden because it hurts really bad sometimes and all the drs I see are stumped. My chiropractor thinks I have a knot and displaced ribs, he also has mentioned costocondritis. My regular Dr and know my GI Dr believe its anxiety and depression due to the fact that they have no idea of what might be happening. I have tried other things on my own including colon cleanses changed my diet ( I have list 30 lbs since thanksgiving but haven’t been very active). I don’t have a big appetite. I also have trouble sleeping due to the anxiety this has brought me and I notice that my urine is always real dark first thing in the morning. My bm is always real inconsistent their is times with diareah and then I can go several days without one, I also sometimes get some real solid bm. My throat gets swollen sometimes and I’m just desperate for some answers I’m 36 male and for the most part I thought I was in good health. I have an appointment with my GI and would like some suggestions on what our next step should be. I have asked for a colonoscopy and he has suggested that We don’t do one due to the fact that the ultrasound didn’t show anything. He also has told me that I have had a lot of test done and everything came back fine. Oh I forgot to mention that I also scheduled an appointment with a neurologist and had an MRI of my brain and that came back normal. I don’t know what to do its destroying my life, haven’t been to work in months and I could see my wife staring to get frustrated because she is also starting to believe that is all in my head like all the other drs. Thanks in advance for reading this.

    • Dr. Chris

      Hi Jgnz721

      It is difficulty and often frustrating to seek help from the medical fraternity only to be told that it may be anxiety. Similarly, it is impossible for a practitioner to diagnose any condition if all the tests come back normal. Many of your symptoms are indicative of anxiety and mood related disorders so it is not surprising that this diagnosis was reached. I would advise that you seek a second opinion from another gastroenterologist if you are not satisfied with the treatment thus far.

      Although many of your symptoms could be attributed to a host of conditions and is therefore non-specific, the very dark urine in the morning could be related to a condition known as paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria. However given the myriad of tests your have undergone, this condition should have been diagnosed at some point. Tests to verify the functioning of the pancreas and liver is also recommended if it has not been done as yet.

      It is important to note that a hiatal hernia can account for many of the abdominal symptoms you report. Surgery may be an option depending on the severity of the condition. Other than that it is difficult to comment much further. This online platform is only intended to guide readers but it is your doctor(s) who are in a better position to advise your further. Although it may not be anxiety, it is important to bear in mind that anxiety can account for almost every symptom you have reported except the dark urine in the morning. It may be wise to bear this in mind and seek psychiatric help should a second opinion yield no definitive results.

    • Stella21

      Did u ever find a solution to your problem my daughter has similar situation don’t know what this pain inner chest about 2 years or more sometimes it goes away completely and sometimes stays for weeks. Any advice she also did lots these you they told her its nerve pain anxiety, depression.

      • HI Stella21. It’s very difficult to say for sure through an online platform. The fact that she has undergone extensive testing and they have come to the diagnosis of nerve pain (neuralgia), anxiety and/or depression usually means that they could not find anything wrong in terms of other possible causes. If so, she may then respond to anti-anxiety medication or antidepressants but it is the doctor’s decision as to whether these drugs will be prescribed.

    • aks

      I have exactly same problem. had ultrasound and all but no problems found. planning to visit doc in next few days. I have strong feeling that it is due to some kind of hernia..because as you described.. it moves from bottom thighs to leg down, lower left stomach groin, left testicle, and then sometime near neck side, I even get left nose blocking and sometimes breathing problems. It could be due to anxiety I sometimes feel. I sometime take Xanax (0.06 mg) I feel better. also when I dip my feet in very cold water I find relief. Taking shower also gives relief. I do regular yoga and breathing excercise. I find that some poses make my pain worse.

    • Ricker

      You are not alone. I too have similar symptoms, have been through a battery of tests only to be declared a mental case or be told I have ibs. Dont give up. There is something causing this. You are not crazy. Many physicians share the same myer-briggs personality type which impairs their ability to admit ignorance. Keep searching for the answer. New research is coming out all of the time. Good luck!

    • Diann H Pounds

      My husband had those same symptoms and guess what it turned out to be his heart, yes that is right, heart, can cause a lot of your symptoms as well. Go get a full evaluation of your whole body don’t rule nothing out unless it has been thoroughly checked, also could be MS as well. They think that my husband has this and has been diagnosed with ulcerative colitis for years and for years they have been treating him for his stomach when the whole time it was his heart. So be very careful. Go be checked further.

      • Hi Diann. Thank you for your input. A diagnosis of ulcerative colitis is not loosely made. It involves investigations like a colonoscopy where specific lesions characteristic of UC are seen and may further be confirmed with histological examination of a sample biopsied at the time of the scope. You are correct that cardiac conditions cause many similar symptoms (although not the diarrhea). Usually a cardiac condition progressively worsens over short periods of time – years, months and sometimes weeks.

        On the other hand UC can cause relatively constant symptoms over long periods of time – years and even decades. What is more likely in your husbands case is that the stomach condition (assuming gastritis or peptic ulcers, and maybe even reflux) is what has closely resembled the heart condition. This is a common error and therefore investigations like an EKG or upper GI endoscope should be done to differentiate between heart and gastroesophageal (food pipe and stomach) conditions. Going with the symptoms alone for the diagnosis is not reliable.

    • Irfan Aziz

      Dear Sufferer,
      I too have the same story like yours to tell. Exactly in the same pattern. Now it has been last 8 months since the first episode. Doctors say its IBS and Dyspesia. But i got it worse after Upper endoscopy. Now its constant for last six months. I went to a number of doctors but they had no solution for this except prescribing anti depression drugs. But what i believe is that it happened and increased in strength due to upper endoscopy. Number two the drugs that the doctors have been trying on us may have disturbed our natural functioning of stomach or intestines. If doctors say that every test( CT abdomen, USG abdomen, endoscopy etc in my case) is normal then why to experiment on us by prescribing ineffective drugs. Some dacks back i went to other GE he advised me to go through coloncopy but i am afraid to go through that procedure. Out of 6 GEs only one advised for colonoscopy. Rest say that there is no need of this procedure. Now what i conclude is that to manage with this and not to consult any more doctors. Rest is in the hands of Almighty God. May God cure us and keep us away from all unknown and kniwn agonies.

  • netra

    plz tell me my sisiter in la she appendix operation 5 year old &one side remove a overy then after 5 year the left side pain will started in left side side overy any problem in pregency plz hep suugesed

    • Dr. Chris

      Hi Netra

      Not too sure what you are asking but I think there is a concern about pregnancy. If the existing ovary is healthy and your sister is in good health then she should be able to fall pregnant. She should be speaking to a gynecologist and following up on a regular basis should she not fall pregnant after trying for 6 months.

  • Becky Cotterell

    I have a thirteen year old daughter who has been having some stomach problems. About two weeks ago on Tuesday she stayed home from school due to stomach pains. She never misses school unless I force her to due to fever but she was in so much pain she asked to stay home. Wednesday and Thursday she was perfect, but Friday she was home again because of the pain. Then she was fine until last Thursday. Last Thursday when I went to wake her up she was laying on the floor curled in a ball, holding her stomach and crying. Her fever was 102. I took her into the doctor. Her pain dulled after three hours to where she could deal with it but couldn’t sleep. She also vomited three times that morning and the vomit was a thick, brown sludge all three times. At the docs, he felt around her stomach. Pressing on the stomach anywhere caused tears, but pressing on the left side also elicited screams and sobbing. Doc sent her in for a CT scan with contrast that day. They used a contrast solution that she had to drink and they also injected her with contrast. The results came back showing no abnormalities. Friday she had no symptoms but I kept her home from school anyway per doctor’s orders. Symptoms still have not returned. I am worried though because of how severe her pain was. Any ideas on what could be wrong?

    • Hi Becky. There are a host of possibilities. During the initial episode there would have been concerns about appendicitis given her age and most of the symptoms. Although gallbladder problems are uncommon in her age group, it is also possibility.

      Given her age though, it would be advisable to take her into a gynecologist – irrespective of whether her periods have started as yet or not. Several gynecological problems like PCOS start up in adolescence but remains undiagnosed till later in life.

      Since this has started so suddenly and with a fever, it could also be related to certain infections of the abdominal organs which subsequently resolved. As mentioned at the outset, there are many possibilities and specialist attention would be warranted at this point.

  • Helena

    Hello, four months ago I had my enlarged spleen and gallbladder removed. Approximately three weeks later I developed significant stomach pain. The doctor thought the pain was due to constipation from the pain medication and treated it with laxatives. After several days of no relief a CT was completed and I was diagnosed with thrombosis to the portal vein. I am now on a blood thinner and my current INR is 2.4. The abdominal pain improved significantly but never went completely away. Recently the discomfort has increased in the lower abdomen. In addition, the left side of my abdomen across from my belly button is highly sensitive to touch. I am waiting on lab results to return. I had lab result for alkaline phosphatase return today and they were elevated. Should I be concerned with these symptoms? I have a doctors appointment but it is almost two weeks out.

    • Hi Helena. Given your history these symptoms are naturally a cause for concern. It needs to be thoroughly assessed. If all is clear then you should not continue to worry unnecessarily. You do not mention your age or previous medical history apart from the recent incidents. It is possible that your current symptoms have nothing to do with the clot in the portal vein. And there are so many possible causes of a raised ALP that it too may be unrelated to the discomfort/pain that you are experiencing. There is no way of saying for sure whether this is serious or not until you see the doctor. 2 weeks is a long wait so if possible try to get it moved up earlier.

  • Holly McCaughley

    My 10 year has pain on the upper left side. what could that be from?

    • Hi Holly.
      Abdominal pains for no known reason are not uncommon for kids in much the same way adults tend to suffer with headaches at times for no clearly identifiable reason. And kids do sometimes use abdominal pain as an excuse just as adults do with headaches.

      However, this is not to say that the pain is not real and there is no underlying problem. Pain on its own is difficult to diagnose with other symptoms indicating a possible cause or without running further diagnostic investigations.

      If the pain is persisting and severe then you should see a doctor ASAP. As you can see a number of different organs lie in the abdomen. Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and so on may indicate a digestive problem. Problems urinating, discolored urine and so on may indicate a kidney problem.

      It is difficult to say much with just a left sided pain without any other symptoms.

      • Holly McCaughley

        TY

  • My son 26 woke up this morning w/ left lower quadrant pain; he is lactose intolerant. His stool is slightly red he said, now his arms are going numb not sure if it is due to his anxiety.

    • Hi Marie. Red stool is more often due to something he ate rather than blood, as most of us will worry about. But given the pain, red stool and numb arms it may be worth checking out. True, it could be some apprehension that is causing him to feel that his arms are numb. But better be safe than sorry.There are many types of food poisoning where a neurotoxin can affect sensation and muscle movements. It is uncommon but nevertheless worth keeping in mind. Speak to your doctor.

  • A few months ago I thought I had a bladder infection so I went to the doctors. They did a urine test but it came back normal. The symptoms that I was having were pain in my left side just below my ribs, odd smelling urine and having to pee every 5 minutes… . The doctor gave me medication anyways just to be on the safe side, that was maybe 2 months ago. The pain disappeared after I took the medication but now the pain in my side is back. My urine does not have an odd smell this time an I do not feel the need to pee every 5 minutes. The pain I am having in my left side sometimes spreads to my back in the same general area… The pain is dull, like an ache in my side. Feels as if i had been working out but I haven’t worked out.

    Could the doctor have been wrong when it comes to my test results?
    -i am 25 years old.
    -I smoke cigarettes.
    -I notice the dull ache when i cough..
    -no issues going pee,an my urine does not smell odd anymore.
    -It doesn’t hurt to touch the area that aches… But I do notice there is something that just does not feel right.
    -could this be an issue with my diet? As I only eat maybe once a day..?

    when i start to notice this ache it makes me have panic attacks but I’ve been told to not worry so much about it…

    I am thinking of going back to the doctors to see if they missed something..?
    Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

  • Tita

    I has surgery there years ago partí al colostomy. Was feeling good until the beginning of this year. Pain is back on my left side lower and upper has being to er two times and everything is negative had a colonoscopy two months ago that show diverticulosis. But the dr. Said everything is ok. I still get a lot of pain can’t be sitting, walking or standing to long. Had some fever, vomiting pain is bad a times. Not going to the hospital or doctor until I can’t take it anymore. Cause everything is negative. Lately feel tire and sick. Don’t know what to do.

    • Hi Tita. The question now is whether your current symptoms are related to gastorintestinal problems. Many colostomy patients report similar pains as you are experiencing however the fever and vomiting is a cause for concern. It does require further assessment by a specialist physician or gastroenterologist. This could be associated with complications such as infection or obstruction in the bowel. Of course there are other possibilities which may not even be related to the digestive tract. You should see a doctor as soon as possible. If you are unsatisfied with the current approach, then seek a second opinion from another doctor.

  • Kelly N

    My son plays football. In one of the group tackles he said it felt like there was a blow to his lower abdomin. There was a sharp pain at first but went away. Then later after practice the pain returned but now much worse. He is doubled over. The pain is sharp and making it hard to stand. We have tried warm bath to relax the muscle. It did not help. Now he is icing it but still no improvement. Could something have ruptured? There is no tightness or swelling. Just agonizing pain.

    • Hi Kelly N. While many soft tissue injuries can present with such symptoms after a blow, it is nevertheless worth having checked. Remember that the abdomen has the most amount of organs than any other cavity and does not have the same protection as say the chest where the ribs provide a protective “shield”. Football injuries can be very serious even though it may seem minor at the outset. Have him checked up to exclude anything serious. Rather be safe than sorry.

  • TLCMOMMY

    My left lower side been hurting for a long time went to hospital an the said its kidney infection took all meds an still hurts sometimes with sex an if you push on it i have had iud embedded into my pelvis an surgical remived back in 2008 an then a tube down my throat to look at organs but they said they we swellen an gave me meds to helo that was a year ago an they’ve gave me meds for a ulser an everything else well when you touch my left side uts hard what do i do

    • Hi TLCMommy. FIrstly your kidneys are not as low as you may think. It can be tucked under the ribs. So this pain, particularly pain with intercourse, may not necessarily be a kidney problem. Rather it could be a lower urinary tract problem or even a problem with the vagina, cervix or uterus. Pain that is more on one side could also point to a fallopian tube or ovarian problem. There is no way of saying for sure. Your doctor will have to run further tests before a diagnosis is reached.

  • Leslie Perkins

    I have been having very severe stomach pain accompanied by strange red splotches, which started just under my navel. The splotches faded away and then reappeared several weeks later at the top of my left leg where the leg joins to the pelvic area. This is also accompanied by severe headaches, random passing out, chest pain, elevated heart beat, hot and cold flashes, and a strange tingly feeling that reverberates through my entire body in waves that feel like electricity; the vision in my left eye keeps getting worse, the skin underneath it looks bruised and stretched out, and my eye twitches at ransom moments. I am 19 and I have had problems that just seem to be getting worse. I have been to the ER but nothing was found or done about my pain. Does anyone know what is going on with me or can help me?? I’m beginning to scare myself and I don’t know what to do..

  • Chyenne Akerstrom

    So early Friday morning I woke up from a pop in my left side causing sharp pain. Since then it has not gone away. The sharp pain in still there and I can feel it from my ribs to my hip bone and from my spine to almost my belly button. It has made it hard for my to breathe deep or eat, let alone lay on either of my sides, my back. I do have polycystic kidneys so I thought it was another infection but then I started thinking I haven’t really drank anything that would cause one of those. At this point I do not know what it is.

    • Hi Chyenna. A popping sound often emanates from the joints. It could be the joints between the ribs and breastbone or even those of the spine. The location you describe does sound a lot like a kidney/urinary tract infection.These should usually be other symptoms like changes in urination, pain or burning. Apart from the kidney, the spleen and stomach are also located here. Conditions like a hiatal hernia and even gallsones can present with some of the symptoms you describe as well. As you see there are many possibilities and you need to see a doctor for a definitive diagnosis.

  • AirForceVeteran1

    My fiancé has very severe abdomi