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Understanding Epigastric Pain: Possible Causes and Remedies

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Ethan Sulliva
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Understanding Epigastric Pain: Possible Causes and Remedies

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Imagine this: A 47-year-old man has been experiencing intermittent gas-like epigastric pain for a week. Initially, the discomfort was sporadic and bearable, but now it has intensified, radiating from his upper abdomen to his back. The intensifying symptoms and the mystery behind their cause raise a crucial question: What's the diagnosis? This scenario, shared on #MedTwitter, is not uncommon, and it's something many people grapple with.

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Understanding Epigastric Pain

Epigastric pain is discomfort that occurs in the upper abdomen, beneath the ribs, and is often associated with conditions affecting the digestive system. Its symptoms may vary from mild to severe and may be intermittent or constant, sharp or dull, crampy, or characterized by a burning sensation. The pain may also radiate to other areas, such as the back, similar to the aforementioned case.

Medical Gaslighting: A Hurdle in Diagnosis

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When seeking medical help for such discomforts, patients may sometimes face a phenomenon known as 'medical gaslighting'. A concept highlighted in an article on chronicpainpartners.com, medical gaslighting is when a healthcare professional dismisses or invalidates a patient's symptoms or health concerns. This behavior can lead to clinician-associated trauma, where patients may feel unheard, belittled, and may even stop seeking medical help. Such a situation can exacerbate an undiagnosed condition, causing further distress.

Overcoming Medical Gaslighting

Overcoming medical gaslighting requires open communication between the patient and the healthcare provider. Patients should be encouraged to express their symptoms accurately and assertively, while healthcare providers should demonstrate empathy and respect towards their patients' experiences. Remember, the primary goal is to achieve an accurate diagnosis and effective treatment plan.

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Non-medical Remedies for Epigastric Pain

While medical attention is crucial for diagnosing and treating epigastric pain, certain non-medical remedies might help manage the symptoms. For instance, yoga has been proposed as a potential remedy for gas and bloating. As per an article on goodrx.com, although there is limited evidence that yoga directly relieves gas, low-intensity movements like yoga may ease digestive symptoms and lower stress. Specific yoga poses such as the knees-to-chest pose, happy baby pose, supine spinal twist, seated spinal twist, and open stance forward fold target core muscles and may help relieve gas and bloating.

Combining Remedies Effectively

These yoga poses, when combined with over-the-counter treatments, may help manage stomach pain and discomfort. However, it's important to note that while these practices can aid in symptom management, they are not a substitute for medical advice. If you experience persistent or worsening epigastric pain, seek immediate medical attention.

In conclusion, experiencing epigastric pain can be distressing, and the path to diagnosis may sometimes be fraught with challenges like medical gaslighting. However, through assertive communication, empathy, and combining medical treatment with non-medical remedies, the journey towards relief is possible.

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