The abdominal region is a complex section of the body comprised of several organs: the liver, gallbladder, pancreas, stomach, spleen and the small and large intestines. Pain in or around the belly button can be indicative of a problem with any one of these organs. The complexity of the region means that any pain around the belly button should result in a thorough medical examination to determine the cause of the pain.
There are several good medical tests that can help to determine the cause of any abdominal discomfort, especially around the navel area. An abdominal ultrasound is one measure, as is an in depth CT scan. With regards to the cause of pain around the navel, there are several causes, discussed below.
- Appendicitis, which is inflammation of the appendix, is a condition which, as the name suggests, afflicts the appendix, a largely useless organ located between the small and large intestines. Despite its superfluity, any delay in the treatment of appendicitis can lead to serious problems.
- Another inflammation of a stomach organ is cystitis, which affects the bladder. Symptoms include extreme pain around the pelvis, which is of course near to where the bladder is located. One may feel a burning sensation during urination, and blood may even be present in the urine. Again, urgent treatment is necessary to avoid a medical emergency.
- Abdominal hernias are another possible cause of navel pain, and this particular ailment is caused when one of the abdominal organs decides to ‘escape’ through the wall of the abdomen. The pain associated with a hernia is sharp rather than dull, and it has several known causes: obesity, stressful exercise, heavy lifting. Even the sharp bodily movements associated with coughing and sneezing can cause a hernia!
- Peptic ulcers can cause pain in the belly button, and they have a wide array of causes such as high alcohol and fatty food consumption. Infections caused by parasites such as the helicobacter pylori can also cause peptic ulcers. It is associated with pain behind the belly button, and its consequences include the following symptoms: feeling nauseated, stomach bloating, belching, a loss of appetite and subsequent weight loss and the presence of blood in the stool. Anyone suffering any of these symptoms should seek medical assistance immediately.
- Naval pain is also associated with a diseased or infected gallbladder. If the passage of bile out of the gallbladder is obstructed in any way, then the gallbladder can become diseased or infected. Gallbladder stones can also form, causing extreme abdominal pain.
Most of us have suffered from a bout of constipation once or twice in our lives, but chronic constipation is indicative of a much greater problem. A poor diet can lead to constipation and indigestion, but chronic constipation has much more malign effects. The large intestine is the main victim of chronic constipation, as waste material passes slowly through it, sometimes too slowly, resulting in the waste solidifying before the bowel can evacuate.