Pain in Abdomen on left side

Patient

Q: I have been having pain in my left upper abdomen. It seems to be right under my ribs and it gets worse when I eat. It's not horrible pain, but just rather uncomfortable. It feels similar to the pain I had before I had my before I had my gallbladder removed. I've had it about 2 weeks and it isn't going away. Should I be concerned?
I am diabetic and I take Lantus and Victoza.

Doctor

A:   Thank you for your question

Prolonged pain is concerning and new abdominal pain persisting longer than 3-4 days with no sense of subsiding warrants investigations.

I note the association with food and it is an important clue. Other important symptoms to watch out for are fever, cramping, nausea, vomiting and change in stool pattern.

I also note your past history of gallbladder removal and there is a condition where the pain returns due to a reccurent stone in the billary duct but all plausible causes of pain need to be investigated.

Specifically, the liver, kidney, spleen, stomach, and pancreas need to be exluded.

This can be done fairly quickly by your PCP by ordering a series of bloodwork and ultrasound. Some centers offer a CT as an alternative to ultrasound and both are acceptable imaging modalities in this case.

The results of the test will determine the course of treatment.

I hope this was helpful

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