Pelvic Pain in Females
Alternate Names : Lower Abdominal Pain, Abdominal Cramping
A woman's pelvis
contains the uterus, fallopian tubes, ovaries, vagina, bladder, and rectum.
Pelvic pain refers to any pain or discomfort in this area of the body.
What is going on in the body?
Pelvic pain is a common symptom in
women. It is frequently, but not always, related to the reproductive system.
Other causes of pelvic pain are related to the intestines or urinary tract.
Psychological factors can make the pain seem worse, or even cause a sensation
of pain where no physical problem exists.
Pelvic pain can range from mild discomfort or cramping, to severe, intense
pain. This pain may be acute, when it occurs suddenly, or chronic, when the
pain lasts for a long period of time.
What are the causes and risks of the condition?
Pelvic pain in
females has many causes including:
pelvic adhesions, which are fibrous bands holding parts together that are usually separate
endometriosis, a disorder in which patches of endometrial tissue (normally found only in the lining of the uterus) grow outside the uterus
peritonitis, an inflammation usually caused by an infection of the lining of the abdomen
urinary tract infection
hernia, or a bulging of
internal organs or tissues through an abnormal opening in the muscle wall
Mittelschmerz, which is pain in the middle of the menstrual cycle caused by ovulation
ectopic pregnancy, a pregnancy in which the fetus develops outside of the uterus
uterine fibroid, a
noncancerous growth that occurs in the wall of the uterus
colon cancer or ovarian cancer
diverticulosis, a saclike
protrusion of any part of the digestive tract, usually in the large
irritable bowel syndrome
gastroenteritis, a general
term for a group of conditions caused by infection in the digestive tract
abscess, or an accumulation of pus usually caused by a bacterial
pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), an infection of the uterus, fallopian tubes, and adjacent pelvic structures. PID is commonly caused by a sexually transmitted disease that is not treated quickly and effectively.
appendicitis, or inflammation of the appendix
musculoskeletal disorders, such as a misalignment or shifting of the pelvic bones
psychological factors, such as
Other causes are also possible. In some cases, the cause is never found.