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Q: Hi, my 4 year old son has been complaining of sever stomach pain, soon after he vomits. It seems as if the pain is so strong he cant sit still. He Points to his belly button and gets in a fetal position saying his stomach hurts. He has lost his appetite and wants to do nothing but sleep. I have taken him to the ER because of this once before. He had an ultrasound, cat scan, blood drawn, and an IV started. One test showed "dilated tube blockage to the left kidney." The PA that helped us in the ER said she didn't think the pain was because of an issue with his kidney because he said the pain was by his belly button and the kidneys are elsewhere. What could this be?
Neesha - Fontana

A: Dear Neesha, This certainly sounds like a problem you need to have evaluated by your son's pediatrician. It could be something as simple as severe gas pain that triggers him to double over and even to vomit, but if it is a recurrent problem, it needs to be investigated. I would also be concerned about the possible blockage and "dilated tube" to the left kidney as this suggests a serious problem. Sometimes kidney pain is felt in the middle of the back, but some types of kidney pain can be felt in the stomach or the sides. There are not as many nerve fibers in the stomach region as there are in the face, for example, so a pain anywhere in the abdomen often starts out as a pain around the belly button. Please make an appointment with your son's doctor to follow up on this problem. Sincerely, Sarah Wickenkamp, MD

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