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When Not to Ignore Abdominal Pain Santa Monica, CA
Person holding hands on a aching stomach

Abdominal pain is more common than you may think. Flu season may give you an upset stomach, especially if you did not get your flu shot. Contaminated or spoiled food can cause abdominal problems. Many women experience lower abdominal pain as part of their menstrual cycles. Most pain will resolve on its own; however, certain abdominal pains should not be ignored.

Localized Abdominal Pain

Localized pain is that which you can point to specifically. The pain may radiate out from a particular area, but the strongest pain is focused in one spot. The most common reason for localized abdominal pain is acid reflux. This heartburn is usually located at the base of the esophagus where it meets the stomach. Usually soothed with milk or acid reducers, it can easily be treated.

Localized pain in other areas of the abdomen is not as common. If symptoms persist despite OTC pain meds or worsen quickly, you should see your doctor as soon as possible. If that is not an option, you may want to go to an urgent care center or ER facility.

Cramping Pains

Cramps are most often associated with women’s menstrual cycles as well as with constipation or diarrhea. If you can explain the reason for your discomfort and bowel disruptions, it is usually safe to take OTC medications like Pepto-Bismol® or Imodium® to help relieve symptoms. If symptoms worsen, your pain intensifies or does not go away, make an appointment with your primary care doctor as soon as possible. It may be necessary for you be examined at a local emergency room.

Colicky, Sudden Abdominal Pains

Sharp pains that come on suddenly are the most concerning. If the pain does not subside quickly or seems to increase, you should go to an emergency room for treatment. These types of sudden pains are referred to as “colicky” and can be a sign of a larger problem, such as kidney stones or an infection. In women, it may be a sign of tubal or ectopic pregnancy.

No matter what kind of abdominal pain you are experiencing, Dr. Brent Michael is happy to follow up with you. If you sought treatment at an urgent or emergency care center, Dr. Michael can continue any treatment plans that began with that visit, ensuring your continued health.

Posted on behalf of Brent J. Michael, MD

2001 Santa Monica Blvd, Suite 1260W
Santa Monica, CA 90404

Phone: 310-829-7777

FAX: 310-829-9951


Mon-Fri: 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM

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Brent J. Michael, MD

4.7 / 5.0

Based on 25 reviews

Ashly Tucker

I've interacted with Dr. Michael and his staff on several occasions and they have all been nothing but pleasant! Keep up the good work guys! I'll be sending anyone I know who needs a Dr. in Santa Monica your way!

Dolores Niece

Dr. Michael is a brilliant, compassionate doctor who listens and cares for his patient. I have never experienced this quality of medical care anywhere. The staff was very accommodating and made me feel very comfortable. He is the best family physician that we have ever had.

Greg Kove

Dr. Michael is not your average doctor. I feel fortunate to have enjoyed Dr. Michael as my primary GP for over 6 years and have found him to be extremely trustworthy, personable, knowledgeable, honest, thorough, compassionate and non-judgmental. He takes the time to talk to you and to listen to all of your concerns. Dr. Michael is someone you can talk with and he really cares about each one of his patients. He listens and provides suggestions. A patient couldn't ask for a more caring physician than Dr. Michael. The entire office staff is extremely friendly, personable and accommodating. Dr. Michael is a great doctor, mentor and friend. I'm glad I have him as my primary care provider! I am forever grateful to Dr. Michael and strongly recommend him to anyone who desires personalized care.

Gini Holtzman

Dr. Michael takes time to listen, diagnose, and prescribe the best treatment possible. He made me feel comfortable talking to him about all of my health concerns and I left my appointment with answers to all of my questions. Dr Michael really understood what I was feeling both emotionally and physically and communicated that understanding to me.

Jose Hernandez

Dr. Michaels is easy to talk to, down-to-earth as well as smart and competent. It feels more like you’re getting good advice from a personal friend who is also a licensed physician. I have been recommending him to friends and family for years now and with absolutely no complaints. He is always able to fit me into his schedule and help me as promptly as possible. I haven’t had to wait more than twenty minutes after checking in to see him. He is very knowledgeable and polite and is willing to answer all of my questions without being rude or cold.

Alex D.

Dr. Michael is very friendly and easy to talk to. His staff is great and his nurse was absolutely wonderful. I didn’t catch her name but she was quick, very efficient and friendly! I will definitely be sticking around with this doc for as long as I can

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logo Brent J. Michael, MD Santa Monica, CA

Brent J. Michael, MD

2001 Santa Monica Blvd, Suite 1260W
Santa Monica, CA 90404



Mon-Fri: 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM