Constant Left Side Stitch

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Hello,

I've had this constant feeling in my left side that is going on a week now. It feels like a side stitch (like when you run and get a side cramp) although I have not been running. The pain moves from the lower left ab area to my flank/into my lower back around the kidney area. This has happened a few times over the past 3 years, and over that time I've had an abdominal ultrasound, colonoscopy, transvaginal ultrasound and nothing was found. It eventually just goes away although this time it feels more constant whereas before I feel like it came/went. I am referring to it as "pain" but it's not something that prevents me from sleeping/sitting/standing and if I had rate it, it would be a 2-3/10. It's more uncomfortable than anything. I am trying to stay off of Google, but I really am curious about whether others have had the same thing, and what it ended up being. I did just get bloodwork done, and all is good. My doctor thinks it's IBS, and I've been under a lot of stress lately for work which I know can make symptoms of IBS worse. I am pretty regular, eat a lot of fiber in my diet, don't eat meat or dairy, drink a decent amount of water (although I feel like I could always drink more). I take supplements such as vitamin D, C, B-complex and Magnesium.

I was doing a workout program where I was lifting weights (nothing crazy, just 12-15lb hand weights) and may have twisted wrong. My left side just feels tight like all of the muscles are constricted but it doesn't hurt, per se, just feels uncomfortable. Also, for reference, I am a 43 year old female.

Thanks in advance -

Liz

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18 Replies

  • Edited

    43 year old female here too! i too have had a feeling like a cramp or stitch in my stomach among other symptoms which my doctor thinks is gastritis possibly. i am due to have endoscopy soon. it could be your stomach.

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    • Edited

      Hi Anne -

      Thank you so much for replying to this! So interesting that we're both the same age and having the same symptoms. Have you had this feeling before? Do you mind sharing some of your other symptoms? Just curious if they're similar to mine.

      I'm not sure if yours is the same, but mine doesn't hurt - it's just annoying and always there. I haven't looked much into gastritis, but will have to do so.

      Thank you for replying, and I'm sorry you are going through this as well - I hope you find some answers/relief soon! Please keep me posted, if you feel comfortable doing so (or send me a message, too if you'd like) and I'll do the same.

      Thanks,

      Liz

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  • Posted

    Hi Liz - not sure if this will help, but I was diagnosed with mild chronic gastritis (and hiatus hernia) about 18 months ago, which flares up and then goes away. When it flares, the discomfort I feel is under my left rib cage and extending into my back - it's almost like a tight muscular pressure. I also have a lot of IBS type symptoms when the gastritis flares. I've also had a couple of ultrasounds and endoscopies and the only things that have shown up are the above. Maybe worth requesting a further round of tests if you are concerned, but hopefully it's nothing serious. Sometimes it's hard to believe that a mild condition can cause such uncomfortable symptoms! Good luck with it.

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    • Posted

      Hi @barbara56934 -

      Thank you so much for taking the time to reply! What doctor diagnosed you with the hernia and gastritis, was it your GP? I was thinking about going back to my gastrologist to see if maybe he could do another colonoscopy as well.

      A couple of questions, is your pain felt in the flank area at all, like a bruise when pressed? Does your stomach make a lot of gurgling noises? Do you get heartburn/acid reflux at all? I have the above, minus the acid reflux.

      Thank you again!

      Liz

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  • Edited

    Hi - yes it was a referral via my GP on both occasions. And yes to the flank pain - can feel very tender, yes to the gurgling stomach and finally yes to a lot of acid reflux - but not heartburn. Hope that's useful!

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  • Posted

    hey Liz,

    it could he enlarged spleen or spleen tear? I would speak with doctor. Do you have any left shoulder pain too? stomach issues such as gastroparesis and stomach viruses can cause enlarged spleen. I'm talking from experience as I had the same pain, history of stomach ulcers from bacteria. Went in to ER thinking it may be another ulcer as pain wouldn't stop and discovered I had 2 spleen ruptures and enlarged spleen also which had been slowly bleeding. just an idea if it helps. Im still in recovery now but spleen is so.enlarged i get pain after eating and cant lie down or stand for so long without irritation.

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    • Posted

      Hi @bryce42558 -

      First, I'm sorry to hear about the ruptured/enlarged spleen! I am glad you're recovering. No, I don't have left shoulder pain, but also wondered if it could be an enlarged spleen. When I went to the GP for my check up on January 29 (this year) I told her that sometimes it feels like I have a side stitch, since I just started noticing it then. She had me lay down and felt around in that area but said everything felt normal. However, I am planning to give her office a call again tomorrow and see if I can get in for another appointment.

      I really appreciate you taking the time to reply, and I wish you a speedy recovery!

      Take Care,

      Liz

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    • Posted

      Hi @anne53212 -

      thanks for reaching back out. I'm still having the side stitch pain, but it seems to move around a bit (all on my left side still, and is mainly in the lower quadrant). Since my initial post, I've been to the gastro PA who thought it was maybe muscular and prescribed spasm meds which don't help. i also went to the gyno and got a transvaginal ultrasound - all looked good, no cysts/fibroids. I go to my GP tomorrow and i think she'll order a abdominal ultrasound. I'm going to request that or a CT, as it isn't going away.

      What about you, any luck?

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    • Posted

      Hi-

      i wanted to provide an update since my initial post. For those that took time to reply,THANK YOU! I truly appreciate your feedback and suggestions! For anyone who is experiencing the same, hope this helps.

      I went to my GP today who ordered a CT scan to be done immediately. This was after she pressed around on my stomach, so you can imagine my anxiety went through the roof. I got the CT with contrast, and they did an abdominal and pelvic CT. I just got the call that all looks good with both scans! The doctor feels it is muscular and the pain/discomfort is referred pain. I did workout regularly up until this really started bugging me, but did not pull or hurt myself to my knowledge. I am going to continue with chiro visits as i sit all day long for work and I'm sure my body is out of alignment. I am just glad it isn't anything more sinister, my mind (and Google) can lead me on down some pretty scary paths!

      Thanks again, and Take Care -

      Liz

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  • Posted

    hi liz

    i was wondering if you still have this pain?

    i too have similar pain that resembles a left sided stitch/cramp and it has been ongoing for a few years now (comes and goes) but when it comes it sure is annoying and scary as i dont know what it could be. it also radiates to my back as well.

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    • Posted

      hi @shauna86188

      mine went away for the most part. I really think mine was a muscle pull. i was so worried, but got a ct scan and all was fine. it went away shortly after but recently i was working out with weights and must have tweaked something (even though i dont recall doing it) and the next day i had the same side stitch feeling! could that be what is happening to you too? the other thing i am wondering is when my friend had diverticulitis that is what her pain sounded like. it wasnt ongoing, but seemed to flare up periodically. i know its so frustrating! i hope yours feels better soon!

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  • Posted

    hello, im hoping to get advice here regarding a similar issue. goinng into my third week now , i i have had an issue upper left abdomen, also feels like a stitch , started off with extreme pain one evening after eating a meal , eased off but still there, doctor told me he thought it was gastritis due to the painkillers id been taking for an ingoing ear infection which lasted weeks. however its still there, the pain is worse at night and sometimes moves lower down. the uncomfortable feeling on the upper left i can only explain as if something feels swollen, im aware of something . but cant feel anything when i press its just a sensation that some thing is there if that makes sense. ive also had burning mouth , i dont know if that has anything to do with it or to do with my teeth grinding at night. any advice is greaty appreciated

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    • Posted

      Hi Sarah, I had the exact same experience as you a few nights ago. after eating dinner (and a few wines) I got a sharp pain in my upper left abdomen bear my ribs. I thought it was heart burn or indigestion and could barely sleep. Ended up going to doctors the next day and she poked around and said nothing was abnormal. my spleen didn't seem enlarged and thought it may be a muscle strain or some inflammation from an injury. I haven't done any physical training or strength work so can rule that out. Thinking about going again for another opinion. Would be interested to hear what your diagnosis is as it sounds similar.

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    • Posted

      hi thomas.... i stil l have the pain, it is now working its way down my abdomen. nearly 4 weeks i mbe had this discomfort.

      i have an abdomen scan tomorrow eveing g and i have to do a stool sample also. this is the only update i can provide at the moment sorry. the doctor mentioned H pylori, infection in the i think thats what they are testing for. hope all is well with you. are you still

      experiencing any pain?

      sarah

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    • Posted

      Hi Sarah, sorry to hear that. Hopefully the scan answers some questions for you. I went to the GP today and she said it could be costochondritis which is an inflammation of the cartilage that connects a rib to the breastbone. I'm on rabeprazole which is to help with the acid reflux which the GP thinks it might be. could also be inflammation as well. Will wait for my blood test and ECG result before getting carried away. pain is still sharp and constant.

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