Blunt abdominal injuries, such as from a fall
or a blow to the stomach, can cause severe bruising of the abdominal wall and
bleeding from or rupture of the internal organs. These types of injuries are
often caused by falls from a significant height. They can also be caused by car, bike,
sledding, or skiing accidents in which the victim is thrown against an object
or to the ground. Physical abuse is another possible cause of these
injuries in children or adults.
Penetrating injuries result when a sharp
object, such as a knife, or a projectile, such as a bullet, breaks through the
wall of the belly. The risk of infection, bleeding, and organ damage is high
if the object goes deep enough to enter the abdominal cavity.
After a minor injury to the belly, pain, nausea, or vomiting may occur. These symptoms usually improve within a few minutes. Pain and other
symptoms that continue, increase, or develop after an injury may be a sign of organ
Primary Medical Reviewer
William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine
How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.