Why Do Women Get Lower Abdominal Pain?

Generally, lower abdominal pain is attributed to period pain, but this isn’t the only cause of it. Often, it can be difficult for doctors to diagnose the reason for abdominal pain as there are various causes for it, but keeping a note of your symptoms will help narrow down the reasons for this problem. The most common causes are urinary complaints, such as bladder or kidney problems, bowel problems or issues with the reproductive system – most commonly, the uterus, ovaries or fallopian tubes. The type of pain you have will make diagnosing the problem far easier. For example. if you have an urine infection then you will experience a burning sensation when you go to the toilet, as well as a need to urinate more often. This infection can spread to the kidneys which will lead to lower back pain and a high temperature. If you have pain that spreads from your lower back to your groin, and is particularly painful, you may have kidney stones which can be tested with a urine sample. If you have blood in your urine, this could be particularly serious, so you should seek advice from your GP if you notice this. Bowel problems commonly give you abdominal problem as well, with both diarrhoea and constipation giving a ‘colicky’ pain – this means that it comes and goes in waves. Common symptoms of this particular problem include bloating or swelling of the stomach, as well as people with Irritable Bowel Syndrome finding their bowel movements switch between diarrhoea and constipation.


If you have problems with your womb, fallopian tubes or ovaries, these can also cause lower abdominal problems. Where the pain is will determine which area of your body you’re experiencing problems – if the pain is to the side of your lower abdomen, it may be your ovaries. A condition known as dysmenorrhoea can make pain worse during your period, and some conditions lead to pain during intercourse – this is known as dyspareunia and should be referred to your GP. Other conditions which lead to pain in this area can include ovarian cysts, fibroids, pelvic inflammatory disease, endometriosis and complications with the early stages of pregnancy, such as miscarriage and ectopic pregnancy. Some sexually transmitted diseases also cause pain in the pelvic area, such as chlamydia or gonorrhoea – you may experience pain when urinating, groin pain or bleeding between periods, but some sexually transmitted diseases don’t display symptoms, so regular check-ups are advised if you’re sexually active.


Pain during sex can sometimes lead to lower abdominal pain, and there are various causes for this. For example, vaginal infections can lead to pain, as well as a lack of lubrication – both lubricants and sexual therapy can help with this problem. Vulvodynia is a chronic pain which emanates from the vaginal opening, though researchers are unsure what causes it. The symptoms include a recurring pain which is often described as a burning, stinging or throbbing sensation. This problem can be made worse from having sex or riding a bike, as it puts pressure on the affected area. This condition isn’t caused by an infection, so other causes of vulvar pain will need to be ruled out before a diagnosis of vulvodynia can be made. There are a number of treatments available, including medication and physiotherapy. While there are a number of causes of lower abdominal pain, if you experience such a problem then you should seek medical advice as soon as possible to rule out any serious health concerns. Your GP will be able to run tests to determine what the cause of the pain is, and offer treatments accordingly.

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