The reasons why men experience lower abdominal pain may vary compared to women. The causes of the pain may include chronic diseases, urinary tract infections or digestive tract conditions. Research estimates that lower abdominal pain affects almost every man, but most of the instances go untreated. Many men rely on herbal remedies that only help to alleviate pain, instead of finding and treating the underlying cause of the pain. If the pain you experience is sharp and comes from groin, pelvis or the right abdomen, you need to seek medical help immediately.
Possible Causes of Lower Abdominal Pain in Men
The pain is caused by increased strain that abdominal muscles are under in constipation. The muscle strain is accompanied by increased pressure surrounding them and may make the abdominal pain worse.
Men between the ages of 11 and 40 are at risk of appendicitis. Other symptoms of appendicitis include vomiting, fever and loss of appetite. The first sign of the condition is the dull pain near the navel or the upper or lower abdomen that becomes sharp as it moves to the lower right abdomen. The appendix will be surgically removed before it ruptures and infects the entire system.
Hernias cause lower abdominal pain in men, specifically on the right side of the abdomen. A hernia is soft tissue that protrudes and hits the wall of the abdomen, causing pain. Pain can also be felt in the groin and upper thigh area.
4. Testicular Torsion
Testicular torsion occurs when a testicle is coiled. In addition to lower abdominal pain, a man may also experience vomiting, nausea and general testicular pain. The pain is usually sporadic, however becomes more constant as the condition becomes more severe.
5. Ulcerative Colitis
Ulcerative colitis occurs in the large bowel. The pain is concentrated on the lower right side of the abdomen. Ulcerative colitis is typically accompanied by weight loss and bloody stool. You may also have rectal pain and bleeding. You may be unable to defecate despite the urgency to do so.
6. Kidney Stones
Kidney stones are caused by concentrated urine passing through the kidney. The causes of kidney stones are typically diet related: dehydration, excessive amounts of animal proteins and processed sugars. The pain is usually at the side and back, and can spread to the lower abdomen and groin. It comes in waves and fluctuates in intensity. You may also feel pain on urination and persistent need to urinate. Kidney stones have to be treated soon, or the drainage of urine may be blocked, resulting in kidney infections and stasis.
7. Food Poisoning
Food poisoning occurs when ingested food has been contaminated by bacteria or parasites. The other signs usually include vomiting, nausea and diarrhea. It can take up to 48 hours for the pain to pass.
8. Irritable Bowel Syndrome
The condition is also known as spastic colon due to the sporadic cramping of muscles in the small and large intestine. It can cause cramp-like pains, constipation, diarrhea and mucous-like stools. Lower abdominal pain in men and other symptoms are worsened by high levels of stress. It is a chronic condition that can be managed by proper diet and care.
Diverticulitis is when the diverticula, or pouches of the colon, become inflamed. Pain is typically felt on the left side of the abdomen. Diverticulitis presents with bloating, nausea, constipation, fever and diarrhea.
10. Crohn’s Disease
It is an inflammation of the lining of the digestive tract, causing diarrhea and in severe cases, malnutrition. Swelling is a symptom of Crohn’s Disease that differentiates it from ulcerative colitis. Swelling is usually located in the lower right part of the abdomen. The area of swelling is typically about the size and firmness of a small grapefruit. Tenderness around the swelling, which is easily felt, ranges from mild to extreme.
11. Diabetic Ketoacidosis
The condition is a complication of diabetes in which your body produces high levels of ketones. The pain is generalized to the lower abdomen. You can tell the condition by the following sign: shortness of breath, extreme thirst, nausea, frequent urination, fatigue and weakness.
Cystitis is a urinary tract disorder, specifically a bacterial infection of the bladder. Symptoms include burning during urination; frequent urination; lower abdominal pain; dark, cloudy and smelly urine; and even blood in the urine.
When to See a Doctor
Lower abdominal pain in men requires medical attention if it is severe or recurrent. Symptoms that should prompt immediate medical attention are: vomiting, dehydration, painful and frequent urination, blood in vomit, stool or urine. Other signs that should signal the need to visit the doctor are: fever, recent abdominal injury, long lasting pain, shortness of breath and difficulty breathing.
Treatments for Lower Abdominal Pain in Men
Bacterial infections, such as cystitis, will be treated with antibiotics. Conditions such as kidney stones and appendicitis may need to be treated with surgery. There are a number of habits that can be added to your daily routines that can help reduce pain and discomfort without mediations or surgeries. Some of these habits include:
- Keep well hydrated.
- Drink lime and ginger juice after meals and add fresh mint to water in order to help with nausea.
- Avoid solid foods if you’re having difficulty keeping meals down.
- Use a heating pad to subdue abdominal pain.
- If your abdominal pain is related to gas, avoid high fat foods, citrus and other acidic foods such as tomatoes, carbonated beverages, caffeine and alcohol.
- Over-the-counter antacid medication can also be helpful in relieving pain associated with gas, indigestion or heartburn.
However, it’s still important to seek medical attention for lower abdominal pain in men that meets the criteria in the previous section.