Most children experience abdominal pain at one time or another. In some circumstances, this pain can be a simple reaction to food and activity or a symptom of stomach flu or food poisoning. In other cases, stomach pain can indicate a larger issue.

It is important for parents to be able to recognize the symptoms that may indicate that a child’s pain is severe enough to require an emergency department visit. 

Consider the following guidelines to determine if emergency care is necessary. 

If Your Child Has These Symptoms, Emergency Care May Be Necessary

Seek pediatric ER treatment if the abdominal pain meets the following parameters: 

  • The child is inconsolable
  • Pain is severe and unrelenting
  • The abdomen is tender to the touch or pain radiates to your child’s back

Your child may need emergency care if his or her stomach pain is accompanied by the following symptoms: 

  • Fever
  • Repeated vomiting
  • Significant or bloody diarrhea
  • The child is difficult to rouse and has no interest in eating or drinking
  • Seizures or fainting
  • Distended abdomen