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Ask Family Physician Your Own Question
Family Physician
Family Physician, Doctor (MD)
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 12816
Experience:  Emergency Medicine and Family Practice for over 26 years
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Replying to Family Physician

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Hi, I got your response after I walked away from my computer. I am not the type of person who looks for trouble, but I do find this discomfort disconcerting. I have no specific pain in my abdomen; it hurts to sit or lay, mostly because of the side and back pain. I have tried dry heat, moist heat, massage, and Aleve, and it does not appear to be abating. It's not appendicitis because of the left middle location of the tenderness. Any other symptoms I should be watching for?  


 


Just noticed that I am indicated as male -- I am female, if that makes a difference in this case.

Thank you for requesting me:

First, let me give you some information about appendicitis. While the pain of appendicitis is classically located in the RIGHT lower portion of the abdomen, this is not always the case. Some people do experience pain on the left side of the abdomen.

Also, appendicitis is not the only serious medical condition that can cause abdominal pain. In older individuals, diverticulitis (an inflammation/infection of small pockets on the colon) is another potential diagnosis.
http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000257.htm

Even the best physicians are not able to make a diagnosis of abdominal pain based on history alone. A good medical history, a physical examination and in many cases tests are required to make a diagnosis.

I do not mean to be alarmist, I just do not want you to ignore a potentially serious medical problem based on reassurances that can not be scientifically supported.

If you were my patient, family member or friend I would INSIST on seeing your in person. This is not something that should be ignored.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Just one more question -- why would it radiate around to the back?

The body is very good at localizing superficial (surface) pain, however the pain from internal medical problems often is referred to distant sites.

Common examples include pain in the left arm/shoulder with heart attacks, pain in the right shoulder with gallbladder or liver problems.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

This back pain radiates directly around from the abdomen tenderness, which is about half way between my breast and my waist, a little toward the left side than the center.

There are so many different things that can cause pain in this area including diverticulitis, pyelonephritis (an infection in the kidney), even an early case of shingles can cause pain like this.

There is no way to make a diagnosis over the internet unfortunately.
Family Physician and 6 other Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

You have been extremely helpful. Thank you so much! I will make an appointment with my doctor asap.