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Having pinching pain around the belly button, mild back pulling, pelvic pain, and itchy vulva. Suspected bacterial vaginosis. Cure?

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Practicing since : 1997
Answered : 14 Questions
Briefly: I am 25 yr old female, with no medical history (adoption, don't have my medical history), not allergic to anything known. General good health, slightly overweight (15-20 lbs) I have irregular periods, but got on a BC about 3 weeks ago. On my last day of my period now.

My saga...
Back in April I had a weird pinching pain around my belly button for 3 days, but then my period came and it went away and I assumed it was related to my period, although I had never had that pain before. May 5 it came back and I assumed my period was on its way, but being late (not sexually active) May 10 I was diagnosed with a UTI and was given a day 3 antibiotic. My mild fever and cloudy urine went away, but pinching pain still persisted. Was diagnosed with "some bacteria" from the UTI lingering and I had a 7 day antibiotic. The pain persisted and I got a physical exam with a PAP smear and pelvic exam and blood test. My Dr suspected bacterial vaginosis and I was swabbed and was told I had in fact BV and was given a 7 day antibiotic and was told the pinching pain was related to the BV. I also began a birth control which has kicked off a breakthrough bleeding and have had a normal period term with it ending today. Since I was diagnosed with the BV, I had noticed a fishy smell (that I have had for years, but had no idea it was abnormal) left, but now I've felt an itchy/burning in the genital area around the vulva. I also have had some pulling pain around my pelvis joint and groin area. I also have had some flank pain. The symptom that's really plagued me is this pinching pain - I can't describe it any better. It feels like a mild pinch/spasm (2-3 on pain scale) right behind my belly button that sometimes radiates all over my lower and sometimes upper abdomen, but mainly right behind my belly button. It comes suddenly and leaves within seconds not causing much issue, but it's been going on for almost 2 months and is driving me crazy. I had some temporary relief about 4-5 days after my BV antibiotic where I had no pain at all and it was great and was terribly upset to realize the pains returned. They come and go randomly, food doesn't seem to irritate it. I exercise about 4-5 times a week with cardio and weights since last August and have never had a problem. I called my Dr again and told her and she said to stay heavy on water and clear fluids for another week and if it still persisted to setup an appointment. I hate thinking that I'll most likely have to, but I don't foresee this going away miraculously.

April 4-8 - pinching pain behind belly button that I never had before: went away when period began April 9
May 4-10 - pinching pain returns and Dr takes urine sample and finds UTI: 3 day antibiotic - clears fever/cloudy urine
May 24 - pinching pain persists, Dr takes urine and finds "some bacteria" for UTI: 7 day antibiotic - no change XXXXXXX 6 - pinching pain still lingers, mild and seldom flank pain, mild back pulling/cramping pain, pelvic pulling pain, and itchy vulva, Dr takes urine, blood, vaginal swab, and PAP smear - all is clean/clear except for the swab which confirms suspected bacterial vaginosis: 7 day antibiotic XXXXXXX 8 - began birth control microgestin (moderate nausea/queasiness for about 4 days) XXXXXXX 10 - XXXXXXX 15: pinching pain goes away, returns the 15th Sat night XXXXXXX 18 - began on Ultimate Flora once a day Probiotic + 3000mg fish oil (Dr. prescribed) XXXXXXX 25: Called Dr - prescribed extra fluid intake for one week then schedule appointment if nothing's changed

I am able to function perfectly fine - I eat anything/drink anything, I do Zumba and weight machines regularly. I am NOT sexually active. I have never had this kind of pain and it just frustrates me that it's been attributed to multiple things but nothing seems to cure it.

Please give me some idea of what to ask my Dr, I am not sure anyone really understands this pain, so I am worried I am not giving the right info to help with a diagnosis.
Posted Thu, 18 Jul 2013 in General Health
Answered by Dr. Ali Ismayilov 2 hours later
Hello and Welcome XXXXXXX

Thank you so much for such detailed and organized information.

Pain in/behind the belly button (call umbilical pain) can be associated with many different diseases or conditions. Based on the information you provided, I am prone to think that your pain is most likely due to stretching of the abdominal muscles or umbilical hernia.

When you XXXXXXX your doctor, please ask her to consider these options and rule them out.

If you have any additional questions pertinent to this issue, please ask.

Kind regards,

A. Ismayilov, MD
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Having pinching pain around the belly button, mild back pulling, pelvic pain, and itchy vulva. Suspected bacterial vaginosis. Cure? 2 hours later
Thank you for your time and consideration! My first follow up:

Is the UTI/BV related at all then? my dr's said the pinching pain was likely bc of these infections, but do hernias present with this type of pain? Also, I have no bulging or lumps that I can feel and it doesn't hurt to move certain ways. I can move freely and nothing "triggers" the pain. It just happens and then goes. I am not sure, but I will suggest it to my Dr. Again, the pain is right around my belly button and sometimes out to my upper and lower abdomen. Sometimes my groin/pelvis area hurts as well. I was wondering is this PID?
Answered by Dr. Ali Ismayilov 33 minutes later
You are welcome.

UTI might cause this. But, first of all, this pain started well before you have been diagnosed with UTI. Secondly, as you mentioned, you have been given antibiotics and the symptoms of your UTI (fever, cloudy urine) went away. So, this pain seems to be something independent (i.e. not related to UTI).

It is a remote possibility to have any pain with BV at all. Furthermore, even if you are 1 of 0000..... people who has pain with BV, let's look at it this way: vagina is about 12 cm long and BV is a purely vaginal condition. How likely for the BV pain to be in your belly button? Isn't the distance between these structures too long?

PID can present with pain in the groin area. But PID is a serious condition. People with PID usually have had a sexually transmitted disease in the past. Additionally, PID presents with severe fatigue and fever. Another very typical symptom of PID is cervical motion tenderness (i.e. during the pelvic exam, when the cervix is moved, severe pain is initiated). You mentioned in your query that you underwent pelvic exam but you did not mention that it was painful. You also noted that you were not sexually active. This why I am not prone to think about PID.

You mentioned "Zumba and weight machines" in your initial query. This is why I strongly believe that umbilical hernia OR stretched abdominal muscle should be ruled out first of all. You MOST LIKELY stretched your muscles but the hernia should still be ruled out.

Kind Regards,

A. Ismayilov, MD
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Having pinching pain around the belly button, mild back pulling, pelvic pain, and itchy vulva. Suspected bacterial vaginosis. Cure? 25 minutes later
Hm, thank you very much for breaking it all down. No one has really taken time to do that. It does make a lot of sense and I hope this new direction will help give me new solutions to try. Any idea of how they might "test" for this? I also just find it weird that movement doesn't set it off, but I've had other weird pains that come and go for no reason in the past, so I guess a pinching abdominal pain is plausible as well.

Again, thank you for your time and consideration. I will mention this to my Dr and hopefully will find some relief soon!
Answered by Dr. Ali Ismayilov 31 minutes later
You are welcome. Hernia in the umbilical region is normally tested during physical examination. Sometimes, if there is complication of the hernia (which is definitely not your case) some additional methods such as ultrasound or abdominal x-ray may be required.

I also hope that you will get relief very soon and wish you perfect health in the future. Should you have any health related question, you can always contact me directly.

Kind Regards,

A. Ismayilov, MD
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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