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Ask Dr. Arun Phophalia Your Own Question
Dr. Arun Phophalia
Dr. Arun Phophalia, Doctor (MD)
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 35754
Experience:  MBBS, MS (General Surgery), Fellowship in Sports Medicine
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My upper stomach is extended to look like I am 7-9 months

Resolved Question:

My upper stomach is extended to look like I am 7-9 months pregnant. It is largest right after I eat. It looks and feels like I have a basketball from my belly button up to my breasts and is top heavy to the lower stomach. Other symptoms include gas, joint pain, fatigue, and sleeplessness at night. I had an ultrasound of my stomach and there is no sign of gall bladder issues etc. I have no health insurance and little savings and am wondering what tests I should go to next.
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  Dr. Arun Phophalia replied 6 years ago.


A single investigation which is likely to most helpful in diagnosis and cost effective for your symptoms would be CT scan of abdomen. Following would be the consideration of the diagnosis;

1) Gastroparesis; slow emptying stomach

2) Hiatal hernia

3) Intestinal obstruction chronic (due to adhesions)

4) Irritable bowel syndrome

5) Diverticulosis

Following may help you, meanwhile you are investigated;

1) Avoid

a) Cabbage

b) Beer

c) Legumes

d) Cheese

e) Beans

2) This may help;

a) Bismuth subsalicylate

b) Activated charcoal

c) Simethicone; (Maalox, Mylanta); Simethicone causes gas bubbles to break up.

d) Beano; contains an enzyme (alpha-galactosidase), which helps to breakdown certain complex carbohydrates.

All are available without prescription.

Avoid foods that appear to aggravate symptoms. These may include milk and dairy products, certain fruits or vegetables, whole grains, artificial sweeteners etc. But this is based on the personal observation for the aggravating food.

Discontinue the following if you do them;

1) gum chewing,

2) smoking,

3) drinking carbonated beverages, and

4) gulping food and liquids.

Please feel free for your follow up questions.

Dr. Arun

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Do you believe any of these problems mentioned could cause joint pain also? I have also suspected food allergies (gluten or dairy). Would a CT scan pick up a food alergy such as this?
Expert:  Dr. Arun Phophalia replied 6 years ago.


Food allergies can be a possibility, though indigestion, diarrhea, pain are likely to be associated with bloating and gas in allergies. Joint pain is difficult to explain on this basis directly. There can be indirect correlation; sleeplessness or fatigue can cause muscle and joint pain. One may need specific blood work (rheumatoid factor, lupus testing) or x-ray of the joints (which are most painful) to look for the cause of joint pain. Crohn's disease (Inflammatory bowel disorder / IBD) which primarily is an intestinal disorder; is associated with the significant joint pain, but usually diarrhea is the predominant symptoms with abdominal pain, bloating and gas. CT scan will help in ruling our that also.

It is pleasure and privilege assisting you.

Dr. Arun

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