Upper Abdominal Pain Is Serious But Easily Treatable

November 12, 2012

Upper Abdominal Pain Is Serious But Easily Treatable

Most upper abdominal pain is nothing to be concerned about and usually can be treated with store-bought pain reliever. If other symptoms occur, it’s best to seek medical treatment.

Upper abdominal pain is any pain that’s located in the upper abdomen region, which is under the rib cage and above the belly button. What causes upper abdominal pain? Believe it or not, there are many causes behind it including peptic ulcer disease and gastritis, which can also come with vomiting. You might also feel upper abdominal pain with GERD or gastroesophageal reflux disease, which causes pain to radiate into the chest, leaving many with a bitter (or sour) taste in their mouth.

Keep in mind that any abdominal pain should be taken seriously. However, if an older person experiences it, it can result in serious illness.

What Should You Call Your Doctor For Upper Abdominal Pain

You need to immediately call 911 if the following four things have happened or are happening:

  1. You fainted

  2. You feel extremely weak like you can’t stand

  3. You have sweat on your face

  4. The pain is lasting for more than five minutes and you have the following:

  • Heart disease history

  • 50 years of age or older

  • 35 years of age or older with cardiac risk factors

If you have any of the following symptoms with upper abdominal pain, you need to call your doctor right away.

  1. Pain that lasts for two hours or more

  2. Severe pain

  3. Vomit with blood in it or black similar to coffee-grounds

  4. Vomiting yellow or green bile

  5. Abdomen is very swollen

  6. Blood in your bowel movements

  7. You feel extremely sick or weak

  8. Recent abdominal injury

  9. Pregnant

  10. Jaundice

  11. Fever of 103 degrees or more

  12. Fever of 100.5 or more and:

  • You’re 60 years old or older

  • You’re bedridden

  • You suffer with a weakened immune system or have diabetes mellitus

If you’re unsure if the upper abdominal pain is serious enough to warrant a doctor visit or you have questions, give your doctor a ring to be safe or have your questions answered. Better safe than sorry!

How To Treat Upper Abdominal Pain At Home

  1. You should sip clear fluids until the pain has retreated for more than two hours.

  2. Sometimes a stomachache is just a stomachache. Remember that and say it to yourself, as worrying will only make matters worse.

  3. Steer clear of fatty and greasy foods, don’t drink a lot of caffeinated beverages and don’t drink alcohol. You should also change from a clear liquid to a bland diet.

  4. It’s time to quit smoking, as it can cause stomach problems and aggravate your heartburn.

  5. Don’t take aspirin or any anti-inflammatory medications since they can cause stomach irritation. Use an acetaminophen instead.

  6. Use an antacid if you have upper abdominal pain at the moment.

  7. If you suffer with GERD, be sure you reduce your meal portions and don’t eat snacks two hours before you plan on going to bed. You also want to avoid spicy foods, chocolate, mints, caffeinated beverages and fatty/greasy foods.

Remember, most upper abdominal pain is nothing to be concerned about. However, if you notice any stomach cramps followed by diarrhea or vomiting and/or you have severe pain, call your doctor or 911 right away! Again, it’s better to be safe than sorry!


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