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How To Talk About Abdominal Pain in Spanish

How To Talk About Abdominal Pain in Spanish

This Medical Spanish lesson focuses on learning how to talk about abdominal pain in Spanish: dolor abdominal o dolor de estómago.

Some time ago, we talked about how to talk about pain in Spanish, so in this case we are going to be more specific and talk about abdominal pain and the different words you can use when talking with your Spanish speaking patients.

Here is the Abdominal Pain in Spanish lesson I taught to the Facebook group:

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Anatomía básica / Basic Anatomy related to abdominal pain

First to all, we need to learn the names of those body parts in Spanish that could be involved with abdominal pain:

Spanish

English

El estómagoThe stomach
El abdomen   The abdomen
Los riñonesThe kidneys
El hígadoThe liver
El intestino delgado   The small intestine
El intestino gruesoThe large intestine
El apéndiceThe appendix
El páncreasThe pancreas
La vesícula biliarThe gallbladder
El bazoThe spleen
El úteroThe uterus
El aparato urinarioThe urinary system
El revestimiento The lining

Signos y síntomas básicos / Basic Signs and Symptoms of Abdominal Pain in Spanish.

Here is some useful vocabulary about common types of pain in Spanish, along with symptoms to be able to determine the nature of the pain and make a proper diagnosis in Spanish.

Dolor / Pain

Spanish

English

LeveLight
Moderado   Moderate
Fuerte / SeveroStrong
RepentinoSudden
AgudoSharp
Sordo  Dull
Después de comerAfter eating
Con / Sin presiónWith / Without pressure
Con movimientos específicosWith specific movements
Al orinar   With urination / Upon urinating

Note: The word “al” means “upon” in this context, so every time you hear “al” and then a verb, it means upon doing that verb.

Síntomas / Symptoms

Spanish

English

NáuseaNausea
Vómito (con sangre)Vomiting (with blood)
Diarrea (con sangre)Diarrhea (with blood)
Estreñimiento   Constipation
FiebreFever
Gas abdominalAbdominal gas
Eructos   Belching
Cambios en la regla / menstruación
Cólicos
Changes in the period
Cramping
Abotagamiento: hinchado, inflado
Ardor
Bloating: swollen, inflated
Burning sensation

Causas comunes del dolor abdominal / Common Causes of Abdominal Pain in Spanish.

Here is a brief description of the cause and their common symptoms

1. Gastroenteritis (Gripe de estómago) / Stomach Flu

Spanish

English

Causado por bacteria o virus y se resuelve en unos días   Caused by bacteria or virus and it is resolved in a few days
Náusea, vómito, fiebre, cólicos, gas, estar hinchadoNausea, vomiting, fever, cramping, gas, being bloated

2. Gas:

Spanish

English

Bacteria descompone comidas que el cuerpo no tolera – produce gasBacteria breaks down foods that the body does not tolerate and produces gas
Dolor agudo, eructos, flatulencia (pedos)   Acute pain, belching, flatulence (farts)

3. Síndrome del colon irritable / Irritable Bowel Syndrome:

Spanish

English

El cuerpo no puede digerir ciertas comidas   The body can not digest certain foods
Dolor que se mejora al mover los intestinos, gas, náusea, cólicos, estar hinchadoPain that gets better after a bowel movement, gas, nausea, cramps, being bloated

4. Reflujo (acedía, ácidos) / Reflux:

Spanish

English

Ácidos estomacales suben del estómago hacia arriba en la garganta   Stomach acids go up from the stomach into the throat
Ardor y dolor, cólicos, estar hinchadoBurning and pain, cramps, being bloated

5. Vómitos / Vomiting:

Spanish

English

Dolor, ardor en el esófago   Pain, burning in the esophagus

6. Gastritis:

Spanish

English

Inflamación e hinchazón del revestimiento del estómago   Inflammation and swelling of the lining of the stomach
Dolor, náusea, vómito, diarrea, estar hinchadoPain, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, bloating

7. Intolerancia a comidas / Intolerance to Certain Foods:

Spanish

English

El cuerpo no puede digerir ciertas comidas y bacterias las descomponenThe body can not digest certain foods and bacteria break them down
Gas, presión, dolor, náusea,   Gas, pressure, pain, nausea

8. Estreñimiento / Constipation:

Spanish

English

Cuando el colon se atasca o se bloquea y el excremento no puede pasar   When the colon is blocked and the feces can not pass
Dolor, no poder mover los intestinosPain, not being able to move the bowels

Download Abdominal Pain in Spanish Notes TODAY

Note: in Spanish, “estar constipado” also means to have a cold, so to avoid a misunderstanding, “tener estreñimiento” or “estar estreñido” are the best options in this case.

9. ERG (Enfermedad de reflujo gastroesofágico) / GERD:

Spanish

English

El esfínter entre el estómago y la garganta se afloja o abre y permite a los ácidos subir   The sphincter between the stomach and the throat gets loose or opens and allows the acids to rise
Dolor, acedía, náuseaPain, heartburn, nausea

10. Úlceras pépticas y estomacales / Peptic and Stomach Ulcers:

Spanish

English

Lesiones normalmente causadas por una bacteria (H. pylori) o por AINE (antiinflamatorios no esteroides)Lesions usually caused by bacteria (H. pylori) or NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs)
Dolor severo y persistente   Severe and persistent pain

11. Enfermedad de Chron / Crohn’s Disease:

Spanish

English

Inflamación del revestimiento de los intestinos   Inflammation of the intestinal linings
Dolor, gas, diarrea, náusea, vómito, estar hinchado, pérdida de peso, cansancioPain, gas, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, being bloated, weight loss, tiredness

12. Enfermedad celíaca / Celiac Disease:

Spanish

English

Una alergia al gluten (proteína en granos)   A gluten allergy (protein in grains)
Dolor, gas, diarrea, estar hinchadoPain, gas, diarrhea, being bloated

13. Tirón o distensión muscular /  Muscle Strain:

Spanish

English

Una herida común al músculo – se estira demasiadoA wound injury to the muscle – it stretches too much
Dolor muscular   Muscular pain

14. Cólicos menstruales / Menstrual cramps:

Spanish

English

La regla inflama el abdomen   The period inflames the abdomen
Dolor, estar hinchada, cólicos, estreñimientoPain, bloating, colic, constipation

15. Endometriosis:

Spanish

English

Inflamación del endometrioInflammation of the endometrium
Inflamación crónica, dolor crónico   Chronic inflammation, chronic pain

16. Infección del aparato urinario (y/o de la vejiga) / Urinary tract infection (UTI):

Spanish

English

Infección causada por bacteria (normalmente E. coli)   Infection caused by bacteria (usually E. coli)
Dolor, presión, estar hinchado, dolor al orinar, orina oscura o turbia, olores fuertesPain, pressure, swelling, painful urination, dark or cloudy urine, strong odors

Causas menos comunes / Less Common Causes

Don’t worry! We will talk more about these causes in the next Video Viernes lesson 🙂 For now, let’s just name some of them:

Spanish

English

ApendicitisAppendicitis
Infección de riñonesKidney infection
Enfermedad renal   Renal disease
Cálculos renalesKidney stones
HepatitisHepatitis
Cálculos biliaresGallstones
Intoxicación alimenticiaFood poisoning
ParásitosParasites
Cáncer de estómago, páncreas, intestinosCancer of stomach, pancreas, intestines
HerniaHernia
Quistes   Cysts
Torsión ováricaTwisted ovary

La historia y el examen físico / The History and Physical Exam

We talked about how to take the medical history and useful phrases for the physical exam in Spanish in the past, but let’s do a quick review to these concepts and some useful questions you can ask to your Latino patients:

  • ¿Cuándo comenzó el dolor?: When did the pain start?
  • ¿Cuándo está peor? ¿Mejor?: When is it worst? When is it better?
  • ¿Hay algo que lo mejora o empeora?: Is there something that makes it better or makes it worst?
  • ¿Ha tenido este dolor antes?: Have you had this pain before?
  • ¿Le duele cuando palpo / toco aquí?: Does it hurt when I touch here?
  • Dígame si algo le duele: Tell me if something hurts
  • ¿El dolor se asocia con…: Is the pain related to…
    • lo que come?: what you eat?
    • sus reglas?: your periods?
    • movimientos específicos?: any specific movements?
  • Acuéstese boca arriba: Lie down on your back
  • Voy a escucharle el abdomen: I’m going to listen to your abdomen
  • Relaje el abdomen, por favor: Relax your abdomen, please

Remember you can find a full post about how to talk about pain in Spanish here 🙂

Exámenes y procedimientos / Tests & Procedures

Here you can find the most common tests and procedures to diagnose the abdominal pain in Spanish. Some of them contain links to other medical Spanish lessons with tons of vocabulary and useful information:

  • Examen físico: A Physical Exam
  • Pruebas / exámenes de sangre: Blood Tests
  • Endoscopia: un tubo con cámara para ver la garganta y el estómago
  • Ultrasonido: sonografía para ver los órganos, los vasos sanguíneos y otros tejidos
  • PCM: Panel Comprensivo Metabólico (Comprehensive Metabolic Panel or CMP)
  • Tomografía computada: A Computed Tomography (CT)
  • Escán HIDA para ver la función de la vesícula
  • Prueba de embarazo: Pregnancy Test

Signos y síntomas de advertencia / Warning Signs and Symptoms

Es importante consultar con médico si tiene / It is important to visit your provider if you have:

Spanish

English

Pérdida de peso o cansancio sin explicaciónWeight loss or fatigue without explanation
Cambios en los movimientos intestinales que duran más de cinco díasChanges in bowel movements that last more than five days
Sangrado del recto / ano o sangre en el excrementoBleeding from the rectum / anus or blood in the stool
Desecho vaginal anormalAbnormal vaginal discharge
Dolor crónico que medicamentos de venta libre no controlanChronic pain that over-the-counter medications do not control
Dolor que regresa después de terminar medicamentos recetadosPain that comes back after finishing prescription medications
Signos y síntomas de infección del aparato urinarioSigns and symptoms of urinary tract infection

Signos y síntomas urgentes / Urgent Signs and Symptoms:

Es importante ir al hospital si tiene / It is important to go to the hospital if you have:

Spanish

English

Dolor repentino y severo acompañado por una fiebre de 102 gradosSudden and severe pain accompanied by a fever of 102 degrees
Dolor severo en un lugar específicoSevere pain in a specific place
Heces sangrientas, negras y pegajosasBloody, black, and sticky stools
Vómitos incontrolables (específicamente con sangre)Uncontrollable vomiting (specifically with blood)
Demasiada sensibilidad abdominalOver sensitivity in the abdomen
No poder orinarNot being able to urinate
DesmayarseFainting
Dolor que se empeora mucho y muy rápido o que se mejora al estar quietoPain that worsens a lot and very fast or that improves by being still

Now is your turn! ¡Ahora te toca a ti!

Study these abdominal pain in Spanish vocabulary with the flashcards below:

Download the lesson notes and start creating your own sentences using the vocabulary you learn from the abdominal pain in Spanish lesson and share it on the comments below or in our Facebook group to receive feedback from other Medical Spanish learners 🙂

I packaged all of this into easily downloadable .pdf notes– Get your copy for free today!

Download Abdominal Pain in Spanish Notes TODAY

Keep up the good work speaking responsible Spanish to your patients! Check out our other books, classes & products to help you learn medical Spanish!

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Rory
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Rory is passionate about the Spanish language, an expert instructor, and specifically energized by the practical use of language in industry & community settings.
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