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Upper Left Abdominal Pain

Upper Left Abdominal Pain

Pain in the upper left abdomen can be caused due to various reasons, ranging from disorders of the stomach to kidney infection.
Madhura Pandit
Abdominal pain, more often than not, is caused due to gastric problems. However, there are also several other reasons for it. The stomach is divided into four quadrants viz. the upper left, upper right, lower left, and lower right abdomen; in order to make studying and diagnosing diseases easier.
The upper left side of the stomach consists of a part of stomach, a part of large intestine, the left kidney, a part of pancreas and also the spleen. Therefore, an injury, disorder, or infection in any of these organs can result in abdominal pain.
Causes
Acute Pancreatitis
Acute pancreatitis is the inflammation of the pancreas caused usually due to gallstones and excessive consumption of alcohol. Excessive use of certain medications or traumatic injury may also result in this condition. Stomach pain, nausea, vomiting, fever, and diarrhea are the major symptoms.
Enlarged Spleen
Enlarged spleen, also known as splenomegaly, can be caused due to viral, bacterial, and other parasitic infections. Diseases like leukemia and liver cirrhosis can also lead to the enlargement of the spleen.
Gastroenteritis
Gastroenteritis, or stomach flu, is the inflammation of the stomach caused due to virus or bacteria. Accidental consumption of contaminated food and water is the most prominent cause of gastroenteritis. Symptoms of gastroenteritis include abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, dehydration, and loss of appetite.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a disorder of the lower intestinal tract. Its exact underlying reason is unknown. It causes a lot of discomfort and either of the extreme conditions like diarrhea or constipation. Person of any age group can suffer from IBS, however, it is more common in adolescents, specially women.
Kidney Infection (Pyelonephritis)
Pyelonephritis is the inflammation of the kidneys due to bacterial infection. Abdominal pain on one side, fever, chills, and vomiting are the prominent symptoms of kidney infections. One should remember to not to get confused between kidney infections and kidney stones as there is a difference between the two.
Apart from these, Shingles (Herpes Zoster), food poisoning, bowel inflammation, or tumor are the other possible causes of upper left abdominal pain.
Treatment
Physical examination, X-ray, or CT scan are the effective methods that help in diagnosing the underlying health condition. The doctor will also advise the person to undertake blood and urine tests. The treatment depends on the cause and varies accordingly. The doctor will prescribe medication and related treatment option.
If stomach pain is caused due to gastrointestinal diseases, it can be prevented to a great extent by following a proper diet. Similarly, food poisoning can be prevented by eating healthy food and maintaining cleanliness. One should remember that it is easy to get relieved of abdominal pain, if timely treatment is undertaken.
Disclaimer: This HealthHearty article is for informative purposes only and does not, in any way, intend to replace the advice of a medical professional.