Question:

What signs and symptoms should I look for to indicate I need to seek medical attention for my abdominal pain?

Quit Your Belly Aching: It's Time to Get Some Help

There are so many types of abdominal pain, how do you know when the problem warrants medical intervention? Some might say "You just know." Others might stick to a very specific list of signs and symptoms before picking up the phone. It's different for everyone and you may think you know your body well enough to tell when something just ain't right. See a physician if:

  • The pain becomes harsh, recurrent, persists or gets more intense
  • You can't eat because of the pain
  • The pain is accompanied by high fever or chills
Even more importantly, seek emergency assistance if:

  • You have pain plus shorter breaths, dizziness, bleeding, vomiting or high fever
  • The pain is sudden and severe
  • The pain pulses to your chest or neck
  • You vomit blood
  • You notice blood in your urine
  • You have bloody or black stool
  • Your abdomen is swollen or tender
While the majority of abdominal pain is due to a simple cause and passes over time, some symptoms indicate a more urgent problem while others mimic something else entirely. Abdominal pain can be crafty and elusive. Listen to your body and if in doubt, seek medical attention.

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