4 am Abdominal Pain: How Serious?
April 5, 2009 3:15 PM Subscribe
YouAreNotMyDoctorFilter: Last night I was rudely awakened in the very early morning by an intense abdominal pain. I managed to make it to my computer, only to freak myself out about all the possibilities it could be. How serious does this seem, and is it reasonable to just keep a watchful eye on it?
posted by ThyroidBob to Health & Fitness (25 answers total)
Me: Male, college-aged, reasonably healthy.
Last night, 4:10 am: Sleeping great.
4:15 am: I woke up with what I can only figure to describe as a stabbing pain. It started a inch or so below and to my right of my sternum, and felt like it spread towards the right side of my ribcage. It also seemed to hurt in about the same location on my backside as well. It was intense enough that anything hurt (moving, not moving, sitting up, lying down, walking around, etc.) to the point of provoking audible groans. It was almost like mega-heartburn, just not really that close to my stomach or esophagus (if my med school education from Wikipedia and House, M.D. hasn't failed me). I would have described myself as "in agony".
4:30 am: The pain very gradually began to decrease, but I was still far from having a blast. I was seriously contemplating when and how I would make my way to the nearest ER.
4:45 am: The pain had subsided to "significant discomfort", and my tiredness overtook the pain, and I was able to fall back asleep.
This morning: There still was some residual discomfort/soreness. This has lasted throughout the day.
Long story short, I don't really have the time to go to the doctor if it's not necessary, given the rapidly approaching end of the semester. I'm hoping the hive mind can provide some insight and/or advice on how seriously I need to take this incident, and if sucking it up is a Really Bad Idea or not. Also, I'm looking for some guidance on when/how I should pursue it further with medical professionals. The pages I found earlier via searching basically said "go to a doctor NOW if you have any abdominal pain", which seems to me to be a bit of an over-reaction.