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Treatment for a painful abdomen

We offer fast access to diagnosis and a range of self-pay treatments for a bloated or painful stomach.

What is abdominal pain or gastric pain?

There are many causes for lower abdominal pain, from the dull ache of stomach cramps (for women this may be during your period) to the sharp pain in the stomach you feel when you have indigestion. You may also suffer with stomach pain if you’re lactose intolerant, have a hernia, gallstones or appendicitis.

I have a question about treatments for a painful abdomen

What are the three types of abdominal pain?

There are three types of gastric pain, which are:

Visceral - pain related to the internal organs in the midline of the body. Unlike somatic pain — pain that occurs in tissues such as the muscles, skin, or joints — visceral pain is often vague, happens every so often, and feels like a deep ache or pressure.‌

Parietal - parietal abdominal pain is caused by the irritation of the nerve fibres in the peritoneum, the membrane that lines the abdomen.

Referred – when you feel discomfort at a location other than where the pain originates. It results from a network of interconnecting sensory nerves that supply many different tissues.

What are some possible causes of abdominal pain?

There are many causes of abdominal pain, which can be related to your digestion, injury, infection or disease. These include: 

  • Appendicitis
  • Cholecystitis
  • Constipation
  • Cystitis
  • Diverticulitis
  • Ectopic pregnancy
  • Kidney stones
  • Pancreatitis
  • Stomach ulcers
  • Trapped wind
  • Urinary tract infection (UTI)

If you suspect you may have any of these conditions, you should make an appointment to see your GP as soon as possible.

What can I use to treat a painful abdomen at home?

Most abdominal pain goes away without any special treatment. It’s important to be guided by your doctor and consultant, but there are some things that you can do to help ease the pain, including:

  • Place a hot water bottle on your abdomen
  • Soak in a warm bath. Take care not to scald yourself
  • Drink plenty of clear fluids such as water
  • Reduce your intake of coffee, tea and alcohol, as these can make the pain worse
  • Get plenty of rest
  • Try over-the-counter antacids to help reduce some types of pain

Take mild painkillers such as paracetamol. Make sure to check the packet for the right dose. Avoid aspirin or anti-inflammatory drugs unless advised to take them by a doctor. These drugs can make some types of abdominal pain worse.  Ask a Pharmacist for advice if you’re unsure.

When is abdominal pain serious?

If you experience any of the following symptoms with stomach pain, it is important to see a doctor as it may be a sign of something more serious:

  • Pain is severe and lasts more than an hour or comes and goes for more than 24 hours
  • Pain starts suddenly
  • Bloody bowel movements
  • Black, tarry stool
  • Diarrhoea
  • Vomiting
  • Inability to eat or drink for several hours
  • Fever greater than 39°c (102°f)
  • Weight loss without trying
  • Loss of appetite

Feeling a lump in the abdomen

What doctor treats abdominal pain?

If you have chronic digestive issues such as bloating, abdominal pain, and diarrhoea, your primary care physician will likely refer you to a specialist. A Gastroenterologist is a doctor who specialises in diagnosing and treating digestive system disorders.

At Benenden Hospital, we have a specialist team of Consultant Gastroenterologists who provide routine private gastroenterology diagnoses and treatment.

How is abdominal pain diagnosed?

We offer fast access to diagnostic procedures for persistent abdominal pain. This includes:

Gastroscopy (also known as an OGD test): an endoscope is passed through your mouth, down your oesophagus and into your stomach. Your Consultant will be able to identify any issues and – if necessary – take a biopsy.

Colonoscopy: this is a relatively quick procedure where your Consultant will insert a colonoscope into your anus, before inflating your bowel with carbon dioxide gas in order to identify any issues with the lining.

What treatments are available for abdominal pain at Benenden Hospital?

We offer a range of treatments for conditions such as appendicitis, gallstones and kidney stones as well as urinary tract infections. To find out more, or book an appointment, please complete our online form or call our Private Patient team on 01580 363158.

Our Consultants

Mr Hamouda General Surgeon

Ahmed Hamouda

Consultant Surgeon

Mr Hamouda's specialties include gallstone disease, gallbladder removal and hernia repair.

Mr Abuchi Okaro

Abuchi Okaro

Consultant Surgeon

Mr Okaro's specialties include general surgery and upper GI surgery.

Mr Abdul Aal

Yasser Abdul Aal

Consultant General and Emergency Surgeon

Mr Abdul Aal's specialties include gallbladder removal, hernia surgery, advanced upper and gastrointestinal procedures.

Mr Hamade

Ayman Hamade

Consultant Surgeon

Mr Hamade's specialties include colorectal surgery, laparoscopic surgery and general surgery.

Mr Mangam

Sudhakar Mangam

Consultant General, Laparoscopic and Colorectal Surgeon

Mr Mangam works in laparoscopic colorectal surgery and coloproctology including bowel cancer, haemorrhoids, fissures, fistula and inflammatory bowel disease.

Mr Hasan

Fazal Hasan

Consultant General Surgeon

Mr Hasan's specialties include advanced laparoscopic surgery, thyroid surgery and hepatobiliary surgery procedures.

Contact us about treatment for a painful abdomen

It's easy to find out more about treatment by giving us a call or completing our enquiry form.