The cause of abdominal problems can be hard to pinpoint. Sometimes minor and serious abdominal problems start with the same symptoms. Fortunately, most abdominal problems are minor, and home treatment is all that is needed. Many times the exact cause of abdominal pain is hard to find. The severity of your pain, its location , and other symptoms you have may help determine what is causing the pain.

Abdominal pain indicates pain in the abdominal area which extends from your rib line down to your groin. Pain within this area can arise by stomach issues as well as problems within any of the other organs in the abdominal cavity. People may experience mild or severe pain and this can indicate any number of health issues.

In general, these are disorders including the esophagus, stomach and intestines. We have a very high success rate in treating gastrointestinal disorders. Most patients will find that their problem is greatly reduced or eliminated. In each case, we perform an individualized evaluation of each patient to determine the particular cause or causes of their gastrointestinal disturbances.

The areas that we pay particular attention to are:

Food sensitivities or allergies 
Stress and/or anxiety 
Chronic constipation 
Chronic loose stools/diarrhea 
Chronic bloating or gas

Differentiation from the point of view Oriental Medicine

 Differentiation would help we to determine the choice of which acupuncture points should be chosen and what other methods should be used too, such as moxibustion or Chinese herbal formula etc. Below are some typical samples for differentiation:

Invasion of pathogenic cold;
Stomach pain occurs suddenly. The patients dislike cold but warm. They like to apply warm pad to their stomach to reduce some pain. They don’t feel thirsty but may like to drink some warm water or soup. Patients tongue coating is white and their pulses are tight.

Retention of food;
Patients feel the distending or even pain in the epigastrium, aggravated on pressure or after meals, belching with fetid odor, anorexia. They may vomit with undigested food. After vomiting the pain may reduce. Patients usually have thick, sticky tongue coating and deep, forceful or rolling pulse.

The liver Chi attacks the stomach;

Patients feel abdominal distension, pain in the epigastrium and radiating to the hypochondriac regions. They belch frequently. Some patients may notice that their anger or mental depression would trigger the pain. Patient’s tongue coating is usually white thin. Their pulses are string-taut.

Liver and stomach heat;

Patients feel stomach pain with burning sensation. They may also have the symptom of vexation, irascibility, and acid reflux, clamoring stomach and thirst or bitter taste in the mouth. Patient’s tongues are red with yellow coating. Their pulses may be string-taut or fast.

Yin deficiency of stomach;

Patients feel dull pain in the stomach. They also have dry mouth and throat. They may feel thirst but don’t want to drink a lot of water. They may also be constipated. Some of them may diarrhea. Their tongues are red and lack of moist. Patients usually have thin and rapid pulses.

Blood stagnation; 

Patients feel stomach pain of fixed location. The pains may like the stabbing of a needle or cutting of a knife. The pains occur or the pains worsen after meal. Some patients may vomit blood or have black stool. Their tongues may look dark purple. They usually have rough pulses.

Spleen-stomach cold deficiency; 

Patients of this type usually feel dull pains in their stomachs. They may feel more pain when their stomachs are empty, after eating the pains are probably reduced. They often have decreased appetite. They probably have clear watery reflux. They may like warm or pressure on their stomachs. Patients often feel tired and lack of warmth in their extremities. Their tongues are pale and pulses are weak.

After reading above, you may have some ideals about your pains from Oriental medical perspective, or may still be unsure what types are your pains. Also it could be a complex of more than one type and it may transform from one type to another.

Acupuncture and Oriental herbal medicine are complementary and alternative choices in which many patients have found pain relief.