Different disorders can cause abdominal pain with a fever including gastroenteritis, intestinal ischemia, Crohn’s disease, appendicitis, food poisoning and diverticulitis. This article is meant as an educational tool, not to diagnose an illness. Complications from untreated abdominal pain can lead to serious problems. It is best to contact your physician for an evaluation if you experience abdominal pain, especially sudden pain, accompanied by a fever. Your physician will want to know information about your abdominal pain including factors that make it worse or better, how long it lasts, whether it is throbbing, sharp or dull and the location of the pain on your abdomen.
Gastroenteritis is an inflammation of the intestinal lining caused by parasites, bacteria or a virus. Although not a type of flu, this illness is commonly referred to as the "stomach flu." Gastroenteritis is spread by contact with an infected person and through contaminated water or food. This illness can cause symptoms such as abdominal pain, fever, chills, vomiting, headache and diarrhea.
Intestinal ischemia is a disorder in which a part of the intestine dies due to a constricted or cut off blood supply resulting from a hernia, intestinal adhesions, blood clots blocking arteries or veins and narrowed arteries. The main symptom of an intestinal ischemia is abdominal pain and other symptoms can include fever, vomiting and diarrhea.
Crohn’s disease, also called regional enteritis or regional ileitis, is a part of a group of diseases called inflammatory bowel disease that causes inflammation in the digestive system. Crohn’s disease generally affects the ileum which is the lower end of the small intestine, but can affect any part of the digestive system from the mouth to the rectum. Symptoms of Crohn’s disease include abdominal pain, fever, diarrhea, rectal bleeding, joint pain, weight loss and skin problems.
The appendix is a small organ attached to the large intestine. Appendicitis occurs when the appendix develops a blockage and, if untreated, the appendix can burst and seep infection into the body. Symptoms of appendicitis can include swelling and/or pain in the abdomen, nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, constipation, diarrhea, inability to pass gas and a low-grade fever. The abdominal pain is usually on the lower right side of your abdomen. This condition is a medical emergency.
Food poisoning can be caused by a virus, parasite or bacteria. Food can be contaminated from different sources including having bacteria on them when they are bought, contamination of raw meat during the slaughter process, contamination of fruits or vegetables during the growing process or if you leave food out at room temperature for more than two hours. Symptoms of food poisoning include upset stomach, nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramps, diarrhea and dehydration. These symptoms can be mild to severe.
Diverticulosis is a condition in which there are small, bulging pouches, called diverticula, on the large intestine. Diverticulitis is a condition when the diverticula become infected or inflamed. Symptoms of diverticulitis can include abdominal pain, fever, chills, nausea, vomiting, cramping and constipation. The abdominal pain generally occurs on the left side.