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What causes sharp stomach pains during pregnancy?

I'm 29 and I'm 4 months pregnant, and I've been having very sharp stomach pains. They come and go. This is really alarming, but I know pregnancy comes with a lot of random complications, and they're not all serious. Should I see a doctor, or am I overreacting?
Questions about pregnancy are best answered by an obstetrician-gynecologist (OB/GYN). Abdominal pain during pregnancy should always be evaluated by a physician because there can be both harmless and very dangerous causes of these kinds of symptoms. First, abdominal pain can be caused by the pregnancy itself. An ectopic pregnancy--where the embryo implants outside of the uterus--or problems with the placenta can cause abdominal pain. Abdominal cramps with spotting can also be a sign of impending miscarriage. Next, pregnancy itself can make women more susceptible to problems with the urinary tract. A bladder or kidney infection or even kidney stones can occur during pregnancy and cause sharp abdominal pain. Just like any other person, pregnant women can also develop appendicitis, a stomach virus, pancreatitis, or gallstones. Finally, there are several non-worrisome things that can cause abdominal pain in a pregnant woman. These possibilities include gas, bloating, constipation, and round ligament pain. The round ligament is part of the intrabdominal support for the growing uterus. As it stretches, a woman may feel a dull ache on one or both sides of the lower abdomen or groin or sometimes even a sharp, stabbing pain that comes and goes. Round ligament pain usually starts in the second trimester and can be provoked with position changes or a lot of physical activity. With any new symptoms or changes in one's health during pregnancy, it is always best to seek evaluation from a physician who can take a thorough history and perform a physical exam.
This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.
If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or (in the United States) 911 immediately. Always seek the advice of your doctor before starting or changing treatment. Medical professionals who provide responses to health-related questions are intended third party beneficiaries with certain rights under ZocDoc’s Terms of Service.

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