Abdominal pain is what doctors call a diagnostic dilemma because it can mean a lot of things for children. It takes an expert like A. John Yazdi, MD, with Pediatric Gastroenterology of Colorado Springs in Colorado Springs, Colorado, to figure out why a child’s stomach hurts and to create a treatment plan to avoid future discomfort. Parents shouldn’t ignore abdominal pain in children if it's severe or chronic. Call the office to make an appointment to find the source of the pain.
Abdominal pain is a symptom that can indicate anything from gas to a severe gastrointestinal condition.
Most people equate pain in that area with the stomach, but the problem might lie in the intestinal tract instead. That’s why it’s important to see an expert like Dr. Yazdi. He will ask essential questions to help pin down why a child hurts.
Pain encompasses a variety of forms and sensations, and identifying how it feels is a critical diagnostic tool. For example, broad, general pain that covers more than half of the stomach area might indicate a virus, gas, or constipation. Cramps, on the other hand, happen before, during, and after bouts of gas or diarrhea.
Localized pain can indicate something more serious, like appendicitis or a hernia. These conditions need immediate treatment.
Babies are a challenge when it comes to identifying pain. Some clues that one has abdominal pain include:
Any one or a combination of these symptoms can mean stomach pain.
Abdominal pain is a common symptom, so it’s a long list. Often the symptoms present with the stomach pain provide a diagnosis, such as fever or a rash. Some common conditions include:
In some cases, gas can cause severe pain, too. If the pain comes and goes, it might be an ulcer, a hernia or celiac disease, as well.
If the pain is severe, parents should call the office and talk to a member of the staff or Dr. Yazdi. Call immediately if the pain is accompanied by:
These symptoms combined with the pain can indicate a serious medical problem.