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Avatar universal

Constant Abdominal Pain-what is it and what to expect

I am writing for my wife who is 26. She has had constant abdominal pain since Christmas. We ruled out pregnancy right away, seen the gynocologist to make sure everything is fine there, since she missed a periodre.  She said if she gets her period she will have to go see a gastroenterologist, cause she cant do anything else for her.  She went to see the family practice and all he did was go..lets do blood test..then he threw a paper at her and said lets do a ct scan after the blood test came back.  They did a scan and all they found was a cyst on her liver the size of a couple grains of sugar.  These cysts are common and people are born with them, so now they say go see a gastroenterolgist.  The liver is way above where the pain is.  Its a constant 5 on a scale of 10, with some sharp stabbing pain here and there.  We are tired of being passed around from dr. to dr. and also the ct scan gives out so much radiation that I dont want her to get anymore (since she has to go to the dentist too, and get radiation there for xrays)  The questions are-- any ideas what this pain could be?  Do you think the gastroentologist is gonna make her have an upper gi, and a colonoscopy??? Do these require raidation? and do you think the dr. can tell us something that wont require a colonoscopy and upper gi?? Were really nervous and are getting tired of being tossed around from test to test, and nothing explained to us.
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Avatar universal
You know, it does seem like the only thing docs want to do is test, test, test, and nobody puts on their thinking caps and nobody tells you anything.  I sure do feel for you and your wife.  I don't know what bloodwork they did, but if you still have that paper, you might want to study it, and I suppose they should have looked for signs of infection, or for anemia, or something like that.  By the way, even tho the scan exposed her to some radiation, it was good to find out nothing obvious is going on in her body!  But next time, you can ask for an ultrasound instead, no radiation, and it shows a lot of stuff too.

A colonoscopy does not have any radiation.  They sedate a patient to where they feel relaxed and sleepy, and they examine the large intestine with a tiny scope, and it also has a mechanism on it that can "take samples" of mucous in the bowel, to see if she's got an infection going on that needs treating.  It also looks for precancerous bumps and painlessly removes them during the exam.  And it can see if there's a blockage of some kind and what the source might be, like a twisted bowel or whatever.  Before she sees that gastro guy, try to have her scan pictures and report forwarded to his offices.  It's always good to have another set of eyes on those, particularly a specialist.

In the meantime, I would like to suggest there's a possibility your wife has some gas in her guts, which can cause an awful amount of pain.  I mean, this is the simple solution, but it's possible.  Could be she's had bouts of it, which might explain why it's been going on for so long.  Alka seltzer, once a day for several days, might give her some relief.  She may also be a little constipated, either from medicine or a lot of heavy food, so in order to break down waste faster, another simple thing to try is for her to drink Acidophilus milk for a while or eat Activia yogurt, both available at the grocery store.  Also to help any sort of constipation is these three:  extra water, extra exercise, and extra fiber (oat cereal, wheat bread, salads).

See if she had a scan of both her abdomen AND pelvis.  If not, her gynecologist can do that ultrasound I mentioned of her pelvis and can also do a repeat urinalysis, to make sure her kidneys are okay...kidney stones can hurt a lot.  And lastly, if her pain is in the very lower right part of her abdomen, where the appendix is, then she could have an appendicitis...I hesitated to mention it, because it's the obvious thing to look for first.  If that's where the pain is, she may need to get that removed soon.

Keep an eye on your wife's temperature.  Put some heat on her abdomen, either with a hot water bottle or a small electric heating pad, because heat helps pain.  Very warm baths are relaxing, which she needs to try to get comfortable.  I hope some of this helps.
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