How to diagnose abdominal pain

abdominal pain is when there is a feeling of pain experienced by a person in their stomach area. This may be located in the upper or lower abdomen. The intensity of the pain can indicate whether it’s a mild stomach ache or a severe acute pain. Various symptoms of abdominal pain may be observed. Below is a guide on how to diagnose abdominal pain.


In general, abdominal pain can be caused by different things including:

Stomach ulcer

Food poisoning



Gallbladder disease

Cancer (stomach, pancreatic, or liver)

Gynecologic problems

Vascular problems

Kidney stones


Urinary tract infection (UTI)

For women, abdominal pain may be experienced during pregnancy.


Depending on what caused the abdominal pain, there may be a dull pain feeling in the stomach area. This can peak into stints of sharp pain. The pain felt can also be compared to cramps and twisting. All these can be experienced and are not exclusive to any cause of the abdominal pain.

Symptoms associated with abdominal pain by those who experience it include:

Loss of appetite




Discomfort (abdomen, chest, or pelvic area)




Tender abdomen





Serious symptoms from those who are experiencing abdominal pain include:

Sharp pain lasting for long periods of time

Pain during urination and frequent urination

Blood in the stool

Sudden weight loss

Swelling in a specific area of the abdomen

Yellow tint of the skin

Nausea and vomiting


With the information gathered above, it is important to diagnose abdominal pain properly. A licensed physician will ask the person who’s exhibiting the symptoms a series of questions. The person’s medical history will also be reviewed to find out if there are any physical conditions that may have been contributing to the pain felt in the abdomen.

A person who is going through a diagnosis for abdominal pain can expect the following:

Physical examination

Complete blood count

Pregnancy test



Liver enzymes and pancreatic enzymes tests

Abdomen being X-rayed

CT scan of the abdomen


Capsule endoscopy

Various endoscopic procedures and ultrasound


When the cause of the abdominal pain has been pinpointed, treatment can proceed. The treatments will differ in medications depending on the symptoms displayed by the person experiencing the abdominal pain. Certain food and beverages may be avoided to ensure that the antibiotics for infections work as intended.

Changes in personal behavior can be expected. However, the most common treatments include:

Pain relievers


Prescription medications for pain, swelling, ulcers, and GERD


The more serious cases of abdominal pain may warrant surgery to remove any blockages in the intestines, hernia, or any other organs that are affected.


The person who suffers from frequent abdominal pain should find out whether they have any food allergies that they aren’t aware of, physical or mental conditions that can be affecting how their abdomen processes the food and beverages they consume, and other medical conditions that may contribute to their overall health.

The International Foundation For Gastrointestinal Disorders (IFFGD) is your ultimate source of knowlege about digestive health. Visit our website today to learn more about abdominal pain or other complicated conditions.