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Molly Maloof, MD

Director of Clinical Content

Sharp pain in abdominals

I was in the middle of doing sit ups 2 days ago when I felt a sudden sharp pain in one spot of my abs. I had already done about 37 sit ups when it happened. I am 5'1" and 150 lbs, female. I know I am overweight and that's why I started working out. It does not hurt any other time. Only when I try to do a sit up, or some other exercise that uses that muscle.
  • Female | 25 years old
  • Complaint duration: 2 days
  • Medications: None
  • Conditions: No

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A question...

-Can you point to the area that hurts with a finger or is it a broader area?

-If you can point to the area with a finger, can you feel a lump or bump under the skin that - when you press on it - recreates the pain?

-What does the pain feel like when you try to do a sit-up now (does it stay in exactly the same location or does the pain radiate/move)?

It is not at all difficulty to strain an abdominal wall muscle. However, it is also possible (and likely) that you have disrupted the fascia (saran wrap like covering over the muscle). A true muscle strain (where you disrupt the muscle fibers) will take some time to heal. However, it is possible to treat and resolve a distortion of the fascia in just a couple minutes in clinic. I recommend you attempt to find a provider - most likely a D.O. - that practices the Fascial Distortion Model (look FDM up on-line). A provider familiar with FDM will not only be able to determine the cause (muscle vs. fascia) and will likely resolve the issue in clinic if it is fascial in nature. Dr. Kryger (below) is spot on... if you feel a lump, it's likely what is known as a "Herniated Trigger Point" (look that up on line as well) within the Fascial Distortion Model.

All the best.
It definitely sounds as if you strained a muscle, but I am not sure what your question might be. If you think it is painful to do a situp, then do not do it. Muscular strains usually heal on their own. If you have developed a hernia then you will find a lump in the area of pain.
That sharp pain is likely a muscle strain. A strain is basically an injury or tear to the muscle. It will heal but you may want to take it easy for a weak. Start back gradually working out the abdominal muscles and don't over do it.Ibuprofen may help with the pain as well