Lower Abdominal Pain in Women

Most women feel discomfort and pain in the lower abdomen area, especially before or during their menstruation. This may be related to premenstrual syndrome or PMS. Sharp pain is usually easy to locate. But in other cases, the cause of pain can be unspecific and hard to identify.

Nevertheless, every woman should know the common causes of pain and take note of certain symptoms to help diagnose the problem. It is also useful for women to be familiar with their sex organs and their menstrual cycles. This is so that they would know when they need to consult a doctor to rule out any serious, more complicated conditions.

Type of pain arising from conditions of the reproductive organs

Usually, abdominal discomfort in women are signs of problems in the reproductive system. Pain may be felt in the middle or lower abdomen, as far up as the navel and above the pubic hair line, or isolated in one side, which typically indicates pain coming from an ovary. These kinds of pain may originate from the uterus, fallopian tubes or the ovaries.

Pains that start in the uterus usually worsen at the time of a woman’s period. This is a common condition known as dysmenorrhoea. Pain or discomfort that is felt deep within the pelvis during intercourse is called dyspareunia. Also pelvic pain which occur just before a woman’s monthly period indicates endometriosis. While tenderness in the lower abdomen may suggest pelvic inflammatory disease.

Complications that arise from the early stages of pregnancy may also present abdominal pain among women of childbearing age. Miscarriages or ectopic pregnancies can produce sudden, sharp abdominal pains accompanied with vaginal bleeding. Ovarian cysts and uterine fibroids also cause abdominal pain in women.

Type of pain arising from the urinary system

Pain may also arise from problems in the urinary system, normally indicating inflammation of the bladder (cystitis) or of the collecting system of one or both kidneys (pyelonephritis). Severe pain that travels from the back part of the abdomen and to the front may give the possibility of kidney stones and kidney infection. Further, presence of blood in urine may indicate bladder stones or kidney tumours.

Type of pain arising from conditions of the intestines

The digestive tract, which includes the stomach and bowels, also give rise to abdominal pain. Constipation and diarrhoea can cause pain and discomfort, as changes in bowel movement create pain coming from the bowels. Other intestinal conditions like irritable bowel syndromes cause the lower abdomen to swell or become bloated.

What will the doctor do?

Such pains may also have serious implications that is why these are best consulted with a doctor. Treatment may be based upon the description of the pain and the results of doctor’s examination.

Urine and fecal samples may be tested for signs of infection. Ultrasound scans may be performed for suspected kidney problems. An internal examination, which may be vaginal or rectal, may also be done to feel the abdomen.