Early Signs of Gastrointestinal Diseases

Everyone experiences a bit of indigestion from time to time. Whether you have a short bout of food poisoning or you ate something too spicy, the symptoms might flare suddenly and then dissipate in a short time.


If you find that your stomach symptoms linger for weeks or even months, then it could be signs of gastrointestinal diseases. These digestive disorders can range from mild to severe. It is best to consult with a doctor if you are experiencing chronic digestive problems.


Components of the Digestive Tract


Problems can occur with any part of the digestive tract and affect overall digestive function. When you eat food, digestion is an automatic process that breaks the food into small parts so it can be used in a nutrient form within the body. These nutrients are necessary for energy, and they can also be used as building blocks on a cellular level.


The food enters your mouth and moves down the esophagus, where it reaches the stomach. Then the digestive process continues as the food particles move through the large and small intestines. The liver, gallbladder, and pancreas are also important elements that affect the function of the digestive tract.


Early Signs of Digestive Problems


Some people experience small digestive issues that increase in severity with time. In other cases, digestive discomfort happens quickly and stays consistent. Every person is unique, which is why the symptoms can vary from one person to the next.


The first signs of gastrointestinal issues often include one or more of these symptoms:

  • Nausea and/or vomiting
  • Pain in the abdominal area
  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation
  • Bloating
  • Bleeding
  • Incontinence
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Weight loss or gain


These symptoms might range from mild to serious, and could be caused by a range of digestive diseases. When the pain is severe and/or chronic, the best solution is to consult with an experienced gastrointestinal doctor for diagnosis and treatment.


Causes of Digestive Problems


It’s hard to identify the treatment for digestive issues without an accurate diagnosis. Identifying the cause of the symptoms is the first step in determining an effective treatment plan. Common digestive issues include:

  • Food allergies or sensitivities, such as lactose intolerance
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Cancer
  • Gallstones or other types of gallbladder diseases, such as cholangitis or cholecystitis
  • Narrowing of the esophagus
  • Rectal problems, such as hemorrhoids or prolapse
  • Stomach issues, including ulcers and gastritis
  • Pancreatitis
  • Liver disease
  • Intestinal problems, such as polyps, infections, celiac disease, and Chron disease
  • Reflux issues (GERD)


Diagnostic tests might include an upper GI endoscopy, colonoscopy, ultrasound, or CT scan.


Is it Necessary to Visit the Nearest Urgent Care or ER?


Did you know that stomach pain is one of the most common reasons for visiting an emergency room? When the pain is severe, it can be hard to know what to do to manage the symptoms. Support from a medical team can offer a fast, effective way to identify why you are experiencing pain or discomfort.


If you have severe digestive problems, then it might be time to head to the nearest urgent care or ER. In most situations, digestive issues can be treated in an urgent care. It is important to consider both the severity and location of the pain when deciding on the type of medical care that is required:

  • Severity: If the pain is debilitating or extreme, then an ER visit might be a good idea. Measure your pain level by the way you can move. If you can’t stand up straight, then you need medical services as soon as possible. On the other hand, mild or moderate pain can be treated in an urgent care setting.
  • Location: The affected area could indicate the problem and treatment level that is required. When the pain is in the lower, right side of the abdomen, it could indicate appendicitis and need immediate treatment. General abdominal pain can be cared for at an urgent care facility.


Why iCare ER and Urgent Care?


One of the benefits of choosing iCare ER and Urgent Care is that we provide a full range of services at one location. The initial consultation will be used to determine whether ER services are needed or if you should talk to an urgent care doctor. As a result, you will never pay ER prices if these emergency services aren’t necessary.


Not only do we offer emergency treatments when needed, but our experienced staff can also assist with minor or moderate health concerns. We are working hard to provide a one-stop location for all of your medical needs.


Whether you need trauma care or you would like to talk to a knowledgeable doctor about chronic health issues, iCare ER and Urgent Care is here help. Emergency services are offered 24/7. You can also call ahead to schedule an appointment in the urgent care center. Our board-certified doctors are always on-site to provide the quality care you deserve. For more information about available services, call iCare ER, and Urgent Care at (214) 407-8668.