Swollen Stomach (Abdomen)

A swollen abdomen is when your belly area is bigger than normal. This issue also known as swollen belly; swelling in the abdominal area; abdominal distention; distended abdominal areas.

Swollen Abdomen Causes

Abdominal swelling, or distention, is more often brought on by eating way too much than by a severe health problem. This issue likewise can be brought on by:

  • Air swallowing (a nervous practice).
  • Accumulation of fluid in the abdominal area (this can be a sign of a serious medical issue).
  • Gas in the intestinal tracts from consuming foods that are high in fiber (such as fruits and vegetables).
  • Irritable bowel syndrome.
  • Lactose intolerance.
  • Ovarian cyst.
  • Partial bowel clog.
  • Pregnancy.
  • Premenstrual syndrome (PMS).
  • Uterine fibroids.
  • Weight gain.

Home Care for Swollen Abdomen

A swollen abdomen that is brought on by eating a heavy meal will go away when you absorb the food. Eating smaller sized quantities will help prevent swelling.

For a swollen abdomen brought on by swallowing air:

  • Avoid carbonated beverages.
  • Prevent chewing gum or drawing on sweets.
  • Prevent drinking through a straw or sipping the surface area of a hot beverage.
  • Eat gradually.

For a swollen abdomen brought on by malabsorption, try changing your diet and restricting milk. Speak with your health care provider.

For irritable bowel syndrome:

For a swollen abdominal area due to other causes, follow the treatment prescribed by your health care service provider.

When to Contact a Medical Professional

Call your health care provider if:

  • The abdominal swelling is getting worse and does not go away.
  • The swelling occurs with other inexplicable symptoms.
  • Your stomach tender to touch and bloated.
  • You have a high fever.
  • You have severe diarrhea or bloody stools.
  • You are unable to eat or drink for more than 6 to 8 hours.

What to Expect at Your Office Visit

Your health care service provider will carry out a physical examination and ask questions about your case history, such as when the problem began when it occurs.

The healthcare supplier will also inquire about other symptoms you may be having, such as:

Tests that might be done consist of:

  • Abdominal CT scan.
  • Abdominal ultrasound.
  • Blood tests.
  • Colonoscopy.
  • Esophagogastroduodenoscopy (EGD).
  • Paracentesis.
  • Sigmoidoscopy.
  • Stool analysis.
  • X-rays of the abdominal area.

Last modified: March 11, 2017

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