Abdominal Pain

Abdominal pain is a common problem that affects children. Abdominal pain may be acute or chronic, and can have many possible causes, including:

  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Strep throat
  • Gas
  • Appendicitis
  • Bladder infection
  • Liver problem
  • Pancreas problem
  • Heartburn
  • Intestinal obstruction
  • Food allergy or poisoning

Some of these conditions are more serious than others, but parents should seek medical attention for abdominal pain that is severe or persistent.

Symptoms of Abdominal Pain

Your child‘s abdominal pain may be sharp or dull, may occur in just one area of the stomach or all over, and the pain may be constant or come and go. Abdominal pain is often associated with:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Fever
  • Fainting
  • Pain in the center of the abdomen
  • Bad breath
  • Bloating
  • Weight loss
  • Tiredness

All of these factors are important in helping your child‘s doctor diagnose the cause of the pain. Parents should communicate with their child if possible to determine the specific symptoms he or she is experiencing. Immediate medical attention should be sought if your child is also experiencing high fever, pain during urination or pain in one specific area.

Treatment for Abdominal Pain

Treatment for abdominal pain usually focuses on treating the underlying cause of the pain. Appendicitis and other emergency conditions may require surgery, while other conditions can be treated with medications, fluids or rest. Relieving stress and eating a healthy, balanced diet can often help control abdominal pain.

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