A sharp, piercing side pain is obviously appendicitis—or inflammation of the appendix—but what if your pain is more of a general throbbing, vague abdominal pain, or upset stomach? One of the greatest emergency room challenges is figuring out what is causing your abdominal pain. At Medco ER & Urgent Care of Plano, TX, we are experienced in pinpointing the source of your abdominal pain and finding the treatment that’s right for you.
“Appendicitis doesn’t always manifest in a simple way,” said Medco ER & Urgent Care’s Medical Director, Dr. Nasir Khan. “But our board-certified emergency medicine physicians are able to use our in-house diagnostic tools to find the root of the pain.”
Causes of Appendicitis
While the cause of appendicitis may not always be clear, here are some common reasons:1
- Blockage of the opening of the appendix
- Enlarged wall tissue in the appendix caused by an infection in gastrointestinal system
- Disease such as inflammatory bowel disease
- Growths in the appendix
- Matter that clogs the appendix
- Abdominal trauma
Symptoms of Appendicitis
- Pain or discomfort in abdomen, often near the belly button
- Pain localized on lower right side
- Nausea and vomiting
- Diarrhea or constipation
- Abdominal bloating
- Abdominal tenderness
- Loss of appetite
- Stiff abdomen
Diagnosis of Appendicitis
To diagnose your abdominal pain to determine if it is appendicitis, your physician will do a physical exam including checking for abdominal stiffness and the tendency to guard or react when pressed. A rectal or pelvic exam may be performed to locate the source of the pain. A blood test may show an elevated white blood cell count which may mean you have an infection. A urine test will eliminate a urinary tract infection or kidney stone that would be causing pain. Finally, an imaging exam, such as a CT scan, X-ray or ultrasound may be used in diagnosis.2
Treatment for Appendicitis
“There is really only one treatment for appendicitis – an appendectomy,” said Dr. Khan. “If the appendix hasn’t ruptured, it is a straightforward procedure that can be done as a minimally invasive surgery to remove the appendix. Recovery should be rapid and antibiotics may be prescribed to ward off infection. However, if the appendix ruptured, the surgery and recovery will be more extensive.”
Seek Immediate Medical Treatment
Appendicitis is a serious medical condition. If left untreated, sepsis may occur, which is life-threatening. If you are experiencing pain or have any of these symptoms, come to Medco ER & Urgent Care right away:
- Abdominal pain or back pain
- Intense pain on your right side
- Nausea and vomiting
- Fever and chills
Get help fast at Medco ER & Urgent Care
With little-to-no wait time, you can get right into an exam room and be seen by a board-certified physician within minutes. At Medco ER & Urgent Care, we offer you top-quality care from physicians rather than PAs, CNPs or assistants. Our ER is equipped with the imaging and lab equipment needed to quickly diagnose and to treat your abdominal pain. Open 24/7 every day of the year, we’re here when you need us.
- Plano location:
3960 Legacy Drive, Plano TX 75023 (on the corner of Legacy and Coit Road)
Call us @ 469-392-4000
Self-reliance, toughing it out and playing through the pain is so ingrained in our psyches that it is common to hear of someone who waited too long to go to the doctor. Some symptoms are early indicators of a serious health condition and should not be ignored. To help you know the difference between a passing pain and a serious symptom, the physicians at Medco ER & Urgent Care have compiled a list of 10 things you just shouldn’t ignore.
“If you are noticing any of these symptoms,” said Medco ER & Urgent Care’s Regional Medical Director, Dr. Tariq Vora. “Come to Medco ER immediately or call 9-1-1 for assistance. Even if it turns out to be a minor condition that is easily treatable, it is best to err on the side of caution in most of these cases.”
1. Sudden Pain
If you have sudden, shooting or stabbing pain, you should pay close attention. If there is no cause for it that you can easily identify, it’s time to head to Plano’s Medco ER for evaluation. If you have pressure in your chest or pain in your neck, jaw or shoulders, it could be heart-related. Any piercing headache that comes on suddenly should also receive a prompt medical evaluation.
2. Difficulty Breathing
When your breathing becomes strained, reduced or labored, try to remain calm and not panic. Shortness of breath can be a sign of a serious medical condition such as COVID-19, Pneumonia or heart problems, OR it may be caused by a benign condition such as anxiety. However, you must seek medical attention to rule out a serious disease.
If you notice an unusual sensation of numbness, such as in a foot, arm or hand, it could potentially be an early sign of stroke. At Medco ER, we have the diagnostic tools, such as a CT scan, to help evaluate your condition and treat you quickly to prevent serious health consequences of a stroke such as paralysis.
4. Sudden Weakness
If you suddenly feel your legs give out, your strength drops, you are dizzy or you feel weak all over, it is time to get medical help. Weakness may be a sign of stroke or heart attack. You could be experiencing a drop in blood pressure or a heart issue. Additionally, fainting should never be ignored.
5. Racing Heart
If your heart suddenly goes into overdrive and is racing for no apparent reason, you need to be evaluated by a qualified ER physician. Have someone drive you to the nearest ER or call for an ambulance. It is important to rule out a heart attack or cardiac arrhythmia (abnormal heart rhythm).
6. Searing Pain
If you suddenly have a searing headache or a burning pain in any other part of your body, this is not something to ignore. Your body is trying to tell you something. Our board-certified physicians excel at diagnostics and are ready to help. For example, a sudden onset of an excruciating headache can potentially be a sign of aneurysm or bleeding in the brain and requires an emergent CT scan of the head for evaluation.
7. Blood in the Stool
If you notice a dark, tarry looking stool, it may have blood in it. If you think there is blood in your bowel movements, it is time to be checked out by a qualified doctor. At Medco ER, our qualified physicians can perform blood tests to check for anemia, liver disorder and even a CT scan to rule out potentially serious bleeding in the abdomen.
8. Unexplained Weight Loss
If you are losing weight without a change in diet, exercise or activity level, that is enough reason to go see the doctor. Weight loss may be a sign of cancer, which may be caught in its early stages by a CT scan.
Any confusion or change in mental status should be immediately evaluated at the nearest ER. If the patient shows unusual signs like being unable to do simple math, tell time or recall a major event, it is time to head to the ER. Confusion may be an early sign of stroke or bleeding in the brain.
10. Dimming Vision
Any changes in the vision, especially if occurring suddenly and accompanied by a headache, should be immediately examined at the ER. “We can examine the patient and refer to an eye specialist, if appropriate,” said Dr. Vora. “Or, it could be related to a medical condition that we can begin to treat right away.”
Find help at Medco ER & Urgent Care
Any condition of a sudden onset can be quickly addressed at Medco ER & Urgent Care. Our no-wait ER has Board Certifies physicians standing by 24/7 to diagnose and treat your condition. We provide fast access to some of the highest quality and safest medical care in the region.
While many conditions presenting to the ER may be benign, it’s important to rule out the serious ailments before they become life threatening. We take pride in our staff and Board-Certified physicians at Medco ER who can recognize the severity of any presenting medical complaint and act fast to save lives in an efficient & timely manner.
- Plano: 3960 Legacy Drive on the corner of Legacy and Coit Road.
Call us @ 469-392-4000.