Dr. Oz's Stomach Pain Checklist

Cramping. Bloating. Nausea. Aches. Whatever word describes your symptoms, many Americans are ignoring or self-medicating their stomach pain. It’s time to stop and listen to what your stomach is telling you. Use Dr. Oz’s “abdominal clock” to decipher your stomach pain and learn when its telling you it’s time to go to the doctor.

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Imagine a clock face over your abdominal area and then ask yourself, “At what time is my pain? Where on this clock do I feel the most discomfort?” The answer can give your doctor important clues as to the cause of, and treatment for, your stomach pain. Here’s how it works:


Stomach Pain at the 12:00 Position

Most common diagnosis: Heartburn At the 12:00 position, your esophagus meets the stomach. When the muscle connecting the 2 relaxes at the wrong time it can allow stomach acid to back up, causing the searing pain known as heartburn.


What you can do:
Take OTC antacids neutralize the acid. If after a week, you’re still experiencing heartburn 2 times or more a week, it’s time to see your doctor. When left untreated, chronic heartburn can cause esophageal damage, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and put you at risk for esophageal cancer.


Stomach Pain at the 4:00 Position

Most common diagnosis: Constipation If you’re feeling full and bloated with dull, uncomfortable pain that can be felt in the 2-5:00 area, you’re likely feeling constipated. Between the hours of 2 and 5:00 on the abdominal clock is the location of your descending colon, where the final leg of bowel movements takes place. At this point, stool can become hard and dry – getting stuck in the turns of the descending colon.