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What are the symptoms of an intestinal blockage?

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Quick Answer

The symptoms of an intestinal blockage include abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation and loud noises from the abdomen. It requires in-depth tests to determine if an intestinal blockage exists because these symptoms are also common to other health problems, notes Healthline.

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Full Answer

An intestinal blockage affects the small intestine and the colon, and it can prevent food from passing through the alimentary canal. If this condition remains untreated, the affected parts of the intestine can die, causing other adverse problems, according to Mayo Clinic.

Typical symptoms of this condition include the inability to have a bowel movement, nausea leading to vomiting, severe abdominal pain, the inability to pass gas and swelling of the abdomen, states Healthline.

An intestinal blockage can occur from tumors in the intestine, twisting of the intestine, hernias and formation of fibrous tissue in the abdomen after an abdominal surgery. Conditions like colon cancer, narrowing of the colon, diverticulitis and inflammatory diseases, such as Crohn's disease, can cause this blockage, as Mayo Clinic details.

A doctor diagnoses an intestinal obstruction by using a stethoscope to determine the presence of sounds produced from the abdomen or the presence of a hard lump. Other typical tests for this condition include barium enemas, X-rays and computed tomography, notes Healthline.

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