A swollen abdomen is when your belly area is bigger than usual.
Abdominal swelling, or distention, is more often caused by overeating than by a serious illness. This problem can be caused by:
A swollen abdomen that is caused by eating a heavy meal will go away when you digest the food. Eating in moderation will help prevent swelling.
For a swollen abdomen caused by swallowing air:
For a swollen abdomen caused by malabsorption, try changing your diet and limiting milk. Talk to your doctor.
For irritable bowel syndrome:
For a swollen abdomen due to other causes, follow prescribed therapy to treat the cause.
Call your health care provider if:
Your health care provider will perform a physical exam and ask questions about your medical history, such as:
Tests that may be done include:
Reviewed By: Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Medical Director and Director of Didactic Curriculum, MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies, Department of Family Medicine, UW Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Washington. Also reviewed by A.D.A.M. Health Solutions, Ebix, Inc., Editorial Team: David Zieve, MD, MHA, David R. Eltz, Stephanie Slon, and Nissi Wang.