Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"Could my strained muscles in my abdomen affect my digestion?"
I strained some muscles in my stomach when I was exercising. I feel like I haven't been digesting food normally since. Is it possible that the two are related?
Assuming that there was no blunt trauma, or any other reason that you may have had an internal injury while working out, I don't see any way that the two problems could be related. Your rectus abdominus muscles are external to the peritoneal cavity which is the abdominal cavity that holds all of the visceral organs in your body. Thus any tear, or strain in an abdominal muscle should not have any associated swelling that would affect an internal organ involved in digestion. Also, the nerves that innervate (control) the abdominal muscles a part of what is called the somatic nervous system, or voluntary nervous system. This means that an individual is able to control function to those muscles when conscious effort is applied. The visceral/digestive organs (aka stomach, small intestine, large intestine, etc) are innervated by that autonomic nervous system meaning that you don't have to apply any conscious effort for them to work properly, nor are you able to "override" their function with conscious effort. Meaning that you can't digest faster if you think about it. The two systems are unrelated and an injury isolated to one should not affect the other. If you continue to have problems, I would recommend making an appointment with your general practitioner to get evaluated. I wish you all the best.