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This would, of course, depend on the cause; where a surgical problem such as appendicitis is suspected then surgery is necessary. In other less specific conditions it may be enough to putthe child onto fluids and give a painkiller for a few hours while the abdomen settles down.Where abdominal pain is recurrent over days or months then, as in adults, investigations might include barium x-rays, looking up into the bowel through a sigmoidoscope or down into the stomach via an endoscope.Doctors try to be alert to emotional overtones in cases of non-specific abdominal pains and will explore whether the child has reasons for unhappiness and is using complaints of abdominal pain as a wayof saying "help me".

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