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Step 4: Read and complete the decision guide to learn more about your symptoms.

Recurring Abdominal Pain

Answering our questions, you have either reported that your pain is worse after eating or you have reported diarrhea. This means your lower abdominal pain is associated with a symptom that can arise from disordered digestion. Several common conditions are likely to be considered in your evaluation:

Irritable bowel syndrome

Some of your symptoms are suggestive for irritable bowel syndrome, but you do not have all of the characteristic symptoms of this condition. Common symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome include

  • pain in the mid-abdomen or lower abdomen

  • diarrhea, constipation, or episodes of each

  • mucus that is passed with bowel movements

  • fullness (bloating) in the abdomen

  • loose or frequent stools during pain episodes

  • relief of pain following a bowel movement

  • a feeling that you can't empty your rectum completely.

Celiac disease (celiac sprue)

This illness is caused by an abnormal immune reaction to gluten, a protein that is contained in wheat, oats, barley, and rye grains and many food additives. Blood tests that check for a certain type of antibodies can help diagnose this syndrome.

Crohn's disease

This autoimmune condition is most common in young adults.

Chronic pancreatitis

Good pancreas function is needed for you to digest your foods easily. The pancreas is most active after meals. Diarrhea from pancreatitis is frequently greasy or oily and very strong in its odor.

Abdominal adhesions

If you have had abdominal or pelvic surgery or if you have had an infection in the abdomen or pelvis, you may have formed scar tissue. Areas of fibrous scar tissue adherent to the bowel or other abdominal structures are called "adhesions." Adhesions can encircle the bowel or pull on the bowel or other structures in the abdomen, resulting in pain.

Please call your doctor today to arrange an evaluation.


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