Author Archives: Dr Datta

Types of Abdominal Pain – When to See a doctor?

Stomach pain specialist Hyderabad | Dr. Datta Ram U

Many people experience abdominal pain as there are many potential causes. In general, abdominal pain due to indigestion, gas, bloating, and abdominal muscle sprains or spasms is not very serious. However, there are other potential conditions and causes that may require immediate medical attention. Location and pattern of abdominal pain give indications about the cause Let us try to understand the types of abdominal pain – acute, chronic, and progressive abdominal pain.

Acute abdominal Pain

Acute abdominal pain begins, continues, and gets resolved within a few hours or a few days. It may be associated with other symptoms that develop over hours to days. In most cases, the causes are due to minor conditions. Therefore, acute pain may resolve within a few days without any treatment. However, sometimes the causes of abdominal pain may be due to serious medical emergencies including the following: Pancreatitis, appendicitis, intestinal obstruction, blockage of blood flow to the intestines, abdominal aortic aneurysm, cystitis (bladder inflammation), cholecystitis, cholangitis (gallbladder inflammation), diverticulitis, duodenitis, intestinal obstruction, kidney stones, kidney infection and liver abscess.

Chronic Abdominal pain (Episodic or Intermittent)

This type of pain is episodic or intermittent and may persist for up to several months. It may be there all the time or recurring (come and go). Children often complain of abdominal pain. It is common among girls, affecting women more often than men. If abdominal pain persists for long people get evaluated by a doctor for typical disorders that cause pain. If the cause has not been identified by that time – only 10% of people have a specific physical disorder. In the remaining 90% of people, centrally mediated abdominal pain syndrome (functional abdominal pain) may present.

Conditions that may cause chronic abdominal pain include: irritable bowel syndrome (IBS – many factors including lifestyle personality, stress, genetic factors and underlying mental disorders (anxiety and depression) contribute to pain. In children, it may be due to lactose intolerance.

In adults, the common physical causes of chronic abdominal pain include Crohn’s disease (inflammatory bowel disease), giardiasis (parasitic infections), gallbladder disorders (cholecystitis), liver disorders (hepatitis), ulcerative colitis, celiac disease, gallstones, GERD, gastritis, hernia, functional dyspepsia and overuse of drugs and indigestion.

Progressive Abdominal Pain

If abdominal pain worsens over time, it is known as progressive abdominal pain. It is often associated with other serious symptoms. The causes may include hepatitis, gallbladder cancer, enlarged spleen, Crohn’s disease, cancer (stomach, liver, pancreatic, kidney, gallbladder), and lead poisoning.

Referred Pain

If you feel pain in an area that is away from the actual source of pain, it is known as referred pain. This type of pain is often confusing for many, but it helps experts to find the cause of the pain. For instance, some women experience pain in the back or shoulder blade, but the actual source of their pain is the gallbladder. In some cases, heart attack in women may cause abdominal pain. Twisting of a testis (testicular torsion) in men is one such disorder outside the abdomen that causes abdominal pain.

Bottom Line

Many of us think that abdominal pain is common and often a minor health issue. However, if the pain comes on suddenly and quickly becomes worse, it may indicate a severe and significant problem.

In some cases, abdominal pain is the only sign that demands the need for surgery – and therefore, must be attended by a stomach pain specialist in Hyderabad to prevent complications. In older people, even if the condition is serious, abdominal pain may develop gradually. Newborns, infants, and small children who develop abdominal pain are unable to communicate the reason for their pain. The causes of abdominal pain in children are different than those in adults

When to see a doctor

People with warning signs such as loss of appetite, jaundice, nausea, vomiting, and swelling with gradually worsening pain should see a doctor right away. People with steady and worsening pain should see a doctor within a few days. People without warning signs should see a doctor at some point.

If you are searching for a stomach pain specialist in Hyderabad for abdominal pain, then, see

Dr. Datta Ram U

Follow These 10 Tips to Prevent GERD

How to Prevent GERD | Dr. Datta Ram U Surgical Gastroenterologist

Acid reflux is a condition wherein acid from the stomach flows back into the esophagus. Your lower esophageal sphincter controls the backflow of acid into the tubular esophagus that connects your throat and stomach. If you develop acid reflux, the most prominent sign or symptom you feel is heartburn or a burning sensation in the chest. You will also have other symptoms such as an acid taste in the mouth. Acid reflux is also known as gastroesophageal efflux (GERD). If this condition becomes chronic you will also have frequent heartburn, chest pain, and difficulty coughing, and swallowing.

Learn more about Acid Reflux

Lose weight

If you are Obese, you will be at risk of getting GERD problems. Extra weight, flesh, and fat in your abdominal region put pressure on your abdomen leading to GERD symptoms. If you are obese and have a GERD problem, then lose weight. Next, if you have normal body weight then don’t gain weight.

Check the medicines you are using

There are many medicines that interfere with your digestive process or relax your lower esophageal sphincter or irritate your esophagus. Such medicines increase the risk of GERD.  For instance, iron tablets, certain antibiotics, painkillers and sedatives, anti-allergic medicines, asthma medicines, calcium channel blockers, some non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), potassium and magnesium supplements, and many other medications can increase the risk of GERD. If you use these medications or any other such medications, then talk to your doctor about the best alternative drugs. Remember – to talk to your physician prior to stopping any prescribed medications.

Elevate Your Bed

Gastric acid remains in the stomach if you elevate your head by around six to eight inches. Gravitational force helps in keeping the gastric acid down in the stomach. Some people may prefer taking extra support or a pillow to raise their head, but this will not help. However, wedge-shaped support will help. To get a significant outcome, it is better to elevate your entire upper body.

Don’t lie down after eating

If you lie down immediately after having meals you are not letting the food and acid in the stomach to settle down. You will become prone to developing GERD if you lie down immediately after taking food. This is because acid easily passes through the LES into the esophagus. In general, gravity helps in keeping acid reflux under check.

Don’t Take Large meals at Once

If you take large meals at once, you are putting pressure on the lower esophageal sphincter by filling the stomach completely. This may lead to acid reflux and GERD.

How to Prevent GERD

Avoid the following foods if you are at risk of GERD

Spicy foods, mints, chocolates, acidic fruits such as pineapple, citrus fruits; fatty foods, carbonated beverages, coffee, caffeinated beverages onions, baked foods, oily foods, greasy foods, fast foods, donuts, burgers, pizzas, and other canned and stored foods can increase the risk of GERD.

Wear loose-fitting clothes

This is simple to understand. If you wear tight-fitting apparel or clothes, they constrict your abdominal muscles increasing your risk further. For instance, tight jeans or belts, and skin-tight clothes can increase your risk.

Quit smoking

Smoking can increase your risk of getting a GERD manifold as the nicotine present in cigarette smoke has the ability to relax the lower esophageal sphincter. It also reduces saliva’s ability to clear acid from the esophagus.

Avoid Alcohol

Alcohol is also not a good drink if you are prone to GERD because it also relaxes esophageal sphincter muscles and causes them to spasm.

Other Tips on How to Prevent GERD

There are many reasons behind the GERD issue. Stress could be one of them or it is capable of augmenting the symptoms. To reduce stress, the best bet would be to indulge in Yoga, meditation, hypnosis, NLP (neuro linguistic programming), tai chi, and taking rest.

Chew gum after meals: You’ll make more saliva, which helps neutralize heartburn-causing acid.

Bottom Line

If after trying the above tips, you are still experiencing GERD, see your gastroenterologist. There are medications to get relief from GERD symptoms. If lifestyle changes and medications do not provide any relief from the nagging symptoms of GERD, then you have to see a specialist doctor – a surgical gastroenterologist – who specializes in certain specific surgical procedures – such as Nissen’s Fundoplication that offer a permanent solution to your problem of GERD.

Risk factors for pancreatic cancer

Any person with an average risk of pancreatic cancer may have a one percent chance of developing the disease. Almost 90% of cancers that originate from the pancreas develop sporadically. In some cases, genetic mutations may lead to cancer. In general, there is no known cause of pancreatic cancer. Less than 10% of pancreatic cancers are genetically inherited.

Risk factors for pancreatic cancer

Family history

Pancreatic cancers run in families are linked to genes (genetic conditions) – familial pancreatic cancers. The risk increases manifold with the diagnosis of cancer in first-degree relatives (parents, children, siblings)

Genetically Inherited diseases

A person with a family history of specific uncommon inherited diseases is at increased risk of pancreatic cancer. Such conditions may include Lynch syndrome, hereditary breast and ovarian (HBOC) syndrome, hereditary pancreatitis (HP), familial pancreatic cancer, and Peutz-Jeghers syndrome (PJS). People with familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP) and LiFraumeni syndrome (LFS) are very rare inherited conditions that may also increase the risk of pancreatic cancer.

Liver Cirrhosis

scarring of the liver is a disease that results from excessive alcohol consumption and also due to viral infections (hepatitis C and hepatitis B). Liver cirrhosis most commonly leads to liver cancer, but can also lead to pancreatic cancer.

Hepatitis B infection can also lead to pancreatic cancer.

Helicobacter Pylori (Bacterium)

This bacterium is a common cause of stomach ulcers and inflammation of the stomach. H. pylori infection can increase the risk of the stomach as well as pancreatic cancer – though the risk of developing stomach cancer is very high.

Exposure to Chemicals

Environmental chemicals such as some solvents, dyes, benzene compounds, pesticides, and petrochemicals may increase the risk of developing pancreatic cancer.

Chronic Pancreatitis

Painful chronic pancreatitis may increase the risk of developing pancreatic cancer.

Diabetes

When a person is diagnosed with diabetes and has had it for many years, then – according to several studies – the risk of developing pancreatic cancer increases. However, not all people with new-onset diabetes or detection of diabetes in adulthood will develop pancreatic cancer.

Obesity and Alcohol Consumption

Alcohol consumption, a high-fat diet, and obesity are linked to a higher risk of being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Repeated or recurrent pancreatitis causes repeated inflammation of the pancreas due to heavy alcohol use. Which in turn increases the risk of pancreatic cancer. According to several research studies, people who are obese and overweight have a very high risk of developing and dying from pancreatic cancer. Among the above risk factors for pancreatic cancer, a majority are modifiable ones as they can be changed with some lifestyle changes

Pancreatitis – Types, Symptoms, and Causes

Pancreatitis treatment in Hyderabad | Dr. Datta Ram U

The pancreas is a small organ (long and flat) of the human digestive system with a very crucial role in digestion. It lies behind the stomach in the upper abdomen. The pancreas produces digestive enzymes and hormones for metabolism. Hormones produced by the pancreas play an important role in regulating and processing glucose in the body.

Pancreatitis Types

Inflammation of the pancreas is known as pancreatitis. There are two types of pancreatitis: acute and chronic pancreatitis. When pancreatitis develops suddenly and quickly and lasts only for a few days, it is an acute type. In some cases, pancreatitis develops progressively over a few months or years. This is known as chronic pancreatitis. A less severe and mild type of pancreatitis improves with proper treatment and management. Chronic and severe pancreatitis can cause serious and life-threatening complications.

Symptoms

The most prominent symptom of acute pancreatitis is abdominal pain. In some cases, the condition settles down within a few days or weeks. However, it may become very serious and severe.

Signs and symptoms associated with acute pancreatitis include the following:

  • Pain in the upper abdomen
  • The pain radiates to the back
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Rapid pulse
  • Fever
  • Tenderness when touching the abdomen

Chronic pancreatitis symptoms include the following:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Pain becomes worse after eating
  • Pain mostly felt in the upper abdomen
  • Oily, smelly stools (steatorrhea)
  • Losing weight without trying

What are the causes of acute pancreatitis?

The most prominent cause of acute pancreatitis is excessive alcohol consumption and the formation of gallstones. The other causes may include:

  • hypertriglyceridemia: High levels of triglyceride in the blood
  • Certain medications
  • Hypercalcemia: High levels of calcium in the blood may be due to hyperparathyroidism [overactive parathyroid gland]
  • Abdominal surgery
  • Pancreatic cancer
  • Injury to the abdomen
  • Infection
  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Trauma
  • Obesity

In some cases, the cause is unknown (idiopathic pancreatitis)

Bottom Line

Acute pancreatitis can become a chronic inflammatory condition inducing devastating damage which may turn deadly. The mortality rate associated with all types of pancreatitis remains at above 10 to 12% despite huge medical advancements over the past few decades. The main reason for this could be the slow progress of the condition and relative inaccessibility of the organ as there are no easy ways to see the pancreas directly. The available tests, diagnostic methods, techniques and approaches, and imaging techniques are inadequate.

Pancreatitis treatment in Hyderabad

Difficulties in the diagnosis often delay treatment leading to complications. Apart from the acute and chronic types of pancreatitis, other forms such as hereditary may progress slowly over several years causing significant damage to the person. Those who suffer silently are subjected to enduring pain and malnutrition and could become prone to pancreatic cancer in the long run.

Early detection and diagnosis of the condition are important for the best pancreatitis treatment in Hyderabad at Sunshine Hospitals. If you have any of the above signs and symptoms of acute or chronic pancreatitis, meet Dr. Dattaram U.

Gallbladder Cancer – Signs and Symptoms, Diagnosis

Gallbladder cancer

The gallbladder is a pear-shaped organ. It stores bile. The gallbladder is located under the liver and above the pancreas and duodenum. The liver makes bile and transports it to the gallbladder through a tube called the common hepatic duct and cystic duct. The gallbladder releases bile through a tube called the common bile duct. This tube connects the liver, gallbladder, and the first part of the small intestine. Bile is released from the gallbladder when the food is broken down in the stomach and small intestine.

There are four main layers in the anatomical structure of the gallbladder. They include the inner mucosal layer, middle muscle layer, connective tissue layer, and the outer serosal layer. In the beginning, gallbladder cancer develops in the inner layer and then it grows and spreads to the outer layers. Learn more about Gallbladder Stones.

The Risk of Developing Gallbladder Cancer

Compared to men women are at increased risk of developing gallbladder cancer. The risk increases with age, ethnicity, and geographical region where the person is living.

Gallbladder cancer symptoms

  • Fever
  • Lumps in the abdomen
  • Bloating
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Pain in the upper abdomen
  • Yellow in the whites of the eyes and skin (jaundice)

The above signs and symptoms may also be due to other gastrointestinal conditions. Therefore, it is better to consult a gastroenterologist if you have any of the above signs and symptoms.

Gallbladder Cancer Diagnosis

Gallbladder cancer is difficult to detect (find) and diagnose early.

In the early stages, gallbladder cancer is difficult to detect and diagnose as there are no prominent signs and symptoms. Symptoms if present may mimic the signs and symptoms of other common health conditions. Therefore, in most cases, symptoms often go unnoticed. Another reason for cancer going undetected is the position of the gallbladder behind the liver. Cancer is most often detected after surgical removal of the gallbladder for other reasons.

Gallbladder Cancer Staging

Surgical gastroenterologists try to find out the area in which cancer has spread including the surrounding areas as well. The process involved here is known as staging. Doctors, therefore, order tests and procedures to detect, diagnose and stage gallbladder cancer. The tests involve physical examination, blood tests, abdominal ultrasound, CT scan, MRI, liver function tests, endoscopic ultrasound, ERCP, laparoscopy, and biopsy.

The chances of recovery (prognosis) of the disease depend on whether the cancer has been removed completely by surgery; the stage of cancer and the type of gallbladder cancer.

Treatment depends on the stage, type and age, and general health of the patient.

What are the treatment options for gallbladder cancer?

Gallbladder Cancer Treatment: The standard treatment for gallbladder cancer include surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy. Robust treatment approaches include targeted therapy and immunotherapies.

Gallbladder removal surgery or cholecystectomy is the surgical removal of the gallbladder and also some of the surrounding cancerous cells and tissues around cancer. Expert surgical gastroenterologists who specialize in cancer surgeries remove nearby lymph nodes as well. Laparoscopic surgeons use a laparoscope attached to a camera to guide the surgery. They use other sophisticated surgical instruments inserting and guiding them through small incisions to the surgical site and extensively removing cancerous tissues (cytoreductive) surgery.

Early detection of gallbladder cancer ensures prompt treatment.