What is Abdominal Pain?

Abdominal pain is pain that is felt in the abdomen, the area between the bottom of the rib cage and pelvic area.

Causes of Abdominal Pain

Abdominal pain can either be related to inflammation of the tissues of the abdominal wall (such as the skin and abdominal wall muscles) or be caused by inflammation of organs within the abdominal cavity. Organs of the abdomen include the stomach, small intestine, colon, liver, gallbladder, spleen, and pancreas. Abdominal pain can be acute or chronic.

Acute vs Chronic Abdominal Pain

Acute abdominal pain is often due to an inflammatory process involving an abdominal organ such as a stomach ulcer or appendicitis. Chronic abdominal pain is often due to an intestinal motility problem known as the irritable bowel syndrome. The causes of abdominal pain are many and determining the etiology may involve a fair amount of testing possibly including an abdominal imaging study such as an abdominal ultrasound or CT scan, laboratory tests, and possibly an endoscopy or colonoscopy.

Learn More About Abdominal Pain »

The board-certified physicians at San Francisco Gastroenterology are experts in the diagnosis and treatment of disorders affecting the digestive tract, including abdominal pain. We serve patients from Marin County, Oakland, Berkeley, Palo Alto and the entire San Francisco Bay Area. Our goal is simply to provide the highest quality medical care and patient service possible.

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