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"What causes severe abdominal pain?"

ZocdocAnswersWhat causes severe abdominal pain?


I am a twenty-one year old student but this pain started when I was probably close to eight years old. I went to several doctors and no one could diagnose a problem. When I am under an intense amount of stress, I will experience greater degrees of pain and often have to change what I eat from solid to liquid. I'm not taking any medications.


I sympathize with your situation. It can be very frustrating to have a problem go undiagnosed for a long time despite multiple evaluations. It sounds like you have chronic abdominal pain of unknown etiology (unknown cause). The first thing I would need to know about you is if you are male of female, because the causes of abdominal pain at your age are different for men and women. If you are a man, the causes of chronic abdominal pain are gastritis (inflammation of the stomach), stomach ulcers, Inflammatory bowel disease, and constipation. These are also causes of abdominal pain in women as well, but in addition ovarian cysts, urinary tract infections, endometriosis, and other uterine problems are also possible. If you have been to the doctor before with this complaint, then most likely you have had x-rays, ultrasounds, and maybe even CT scans of your belly which have not shown anything. A common diagnosis in people with chronic abdominal pain where nothing can be found on these tests is irritable bowel syndrome (IBS for short). This is a cause of diarrhea, sometimes constipation and pain made worse with stress and relieved by defecation. The best type of doctor for you to see about this is a primary care physician such as a family doctor. After a thorough history of your symptoms and a good physical exam, you may be one step closer to a diagnosis. Good luck.

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