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We’ve all experienced it at one point or another. A bloated feeling is no fun. But when does a bloated tummy become something worrisome? If the problem is persistent, fist rule out any dietary causes. This is easily managed by removing the offending food item from your diet. Some of the worst culprits for bloating are: beans, onions, watermelon, artificial sweeteners and yogurt.

There are some symptoms, when present with stomach bloating, that could be cause for medical intervention. You should see your doctor if your bloating is prolonged and is accompanied by:

Vaginal Bleeding or Bloody Stool - any vaginal bleeding between menstrual cycles or bloody stools should be immediately reported to your physician. They could be a warning sign of cancer.

Diverticulitis - infected pouches on the lining of the colon can cause stomach bloating, abdominal pain, and fever. Treatment for diverticulitis can be as simple as bowel rest and liquid diet to antibiotics or surgery. Only your doctor can recommend the right treatment for you.

Fever - if your stomach bloating is accompanied by a fever, it could be a warning sign of an infection or inflammation. Blood work may be needed to determine the level of white blood cell count.

Ascites - this condition, which is an abnormal buildup of fluid in the abdomen, is often associated with liver disease. If it is also present with jaundice, it could be a sign of liver cancer.

Pelvic Inflammatory Disease - PID occurs when the ovaries, uterine lining or fallopian tubes become infected. Bloating, fever, tenderness and pain in the pelvic area is also usually present. It is very important to seek medical attention quickly if you suspect PID because it can result in infertility or tubal pregnancies.

Most people who experience stomach bloating are not dealing with a serious infection or disease, but if you suspect anything out of the ordinary, it’s best to seek medical attention right away. The doctors at GI Associates are experts in their field and are committed to helping you find the source of discomfort or symptoms that are concerning.

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