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Tense abdomen when bending forward
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Tense abdomen when bending forward

Last September I spent a day lifting and carrying 50 - 60 pound boxes from one side of a basement to the other. I could feel some strain on my abdomen. Not long after, I noticed if I bent forward from a standing position, the lower part of my abdomen, about 2" below my navel, felt like I had just done a 100 situps. Very tight feeling. Not painful, just a tightness. This is all the way across my abdomen, not just in one particular spot. I do not have to bend fully forward, but just a bit to feel this. If I put just the tips of my fingers on that area of my stomach and lift up just a bit, this feeling is not there.

I have a history of back problems and was told a few years ago I had a herniated disk. This has never bothered much, but was wondering the abdominal tightness could be related to the heavy lifting last September and my back problems, or if it could be caused by some G.I. problem? I don't see any bumps that would indicate a hernia. Do all henias show as bumps?

The tightness disappeared for awhile a couple months ago, but returned again a month or so back.

Come to think of it, it was about late September when my half brother called telling me he had pancreatic cancer. He passed away in December. In late February my father had a stroke and passed away. Is it possible my symptoms are anxiety related due to their deaths?

My appetite is fine, I sleep ok, there has been no weight loss, etc. The only thing different is if I stand in one spot for 15 minutes or so, such as when standing in line at the supermarket, sometimes, when I begin walking, I get a "kink" in the very lower part of my back. I found if I bend over and stretch for a second, that kink goes away. This also began after the day of lifting last September.

In the late 80's I fell from about four feet and landed square on my tailbone. I was literally paralyzed from the waist down for about 15 seconds. It was a very scarry 15 seconds. I went to get up and found I could not move my legs even slightly.

I don't know if any of this could have anything to do with the stomach tighness when I bend over.

By the way, would this tight feeling be considered cramping? It's not painful light leg cramp.

Thanks
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233190_tn?1278553401
Difficult to say without examination.  

It may be possible for a hernia to present without a palpable lump, especially if the hernia is small.  I would consider an abdominal CT scan to evaluate for possible hernia - as well as looking for possible GI disorders.  An upper GI series or upper endoscopy can be considered to evaluate for upper digestive diseases.

If these tests are negative, it is unlikely that a GI disease is present.  Anxiety can then be considered as a possibility.  

These options can be discussed with your personal physician.

Followup with your personal physician is essential.

This answer is not intended as and does not substitute for medical advice - the information presented is for patient education only. Please see your personal physician for further evaluation of your individual case.

Kevin, M.D.
kevinmd_b
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Sorry, last line should have been, "It's not painful "like" a leg cramp.
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