Dyspepsia is the medical term for indigestion. Indigestion includes an uncomfortable feeling of fullness after eating, gas, bloating, and a burning in the upper abdomen. Occasional indigestion is normal and should not be a cause for concern, but frequent symptoms should be reported to a gastroenterologist in order to find the cause of the pain.
The most frequent cause of dyspepsia is heartburn and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), but other conditions can also cause the same symptoms. Peptic ulcer disease, abnormalities in the pancreas, gallbladder, bile ducts, even some cancers can cause dyspepsia.
There is no need to be alarmed over the occasional bout of indigestion, but if the symptoms persist for more than 2 weeks you should make an appointment with a gastroenterologist to diagnose the source of the pain. If any of the symptoms increase rapidly, you should see a doctor right away:
- Frequent vomiting
- Vomiting blood
- Difficulty swallowing
- Black tarry stools
- Weight loss
- Shortness of breath
- Pain that radiates upward to the jaw, neck or down the arm.