that excruciating pain in the side known as stitch



BVSoos

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Dec 30, 2002
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Sometimes when I go very fast I feel some pain on my right-side (liver?) that causes me to go slower ....
Anyone knows whta causes this and what I can do to prevent this?
Tia
 

i2ambler

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Jun 18, 2003
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Originally posted by BVSoos
Sometimes when I go very fast I feel some pain on my right-side (liver?) that causes me to go slower ....
Anyone knows whta causes this and what I can do to prevent this?
Tia

I have only gotten this when running. Im not sure what causes it. It sucks!
 

halien

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Aug 13, 2003
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From what I know it is a lactic acid state in your intestines that results in the stitch. I hear the pain of a heart attack is caused by the same thing.
 
K

kokopuffs

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The discomfort can be cause by irritation of an intercostal nerve.
 

gene d

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Aug 28, 2003
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I believe it's caused by unconditioned breathing muscles. It only happens to me when I run, and if I haven't been exercising for a while.
 

Roreh says:

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Oct 5, 2003
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Drink a gallon of water and go for a run, you will get a stitch much quicker. I have also noticed I get stitches quicker when I have a drink before a cold ride. Maybe it's something to do with not being able digest the water (do you digest water?).
 

Roreh says:

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Oct 5, 2003
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http://www.thefactsaboutfitness.com/research/stitch.htm says:
Despite what you might have been told, scientists aren't really sure what causes the stitch. During exercise, blood is shunted away from the diaphragm (one of the muscles involved in breathing) to the limbs. According to conventional wisdom, the pain is caused by a reduction in blood supply to the diaphragm.

However, two researchers from the University of Otago had a different idea. Brian Plunkett and Will Hopkins tested a theory first put forward in the early 1940's. They proposed that the stitch is actually caused by the gut "tugging" on the ligaments connecting it to the diaphragm.

Plunkett and Hopkins gave their subjects a number of different fluids that digested at different speeds. According to the ligament theory, the pain of the stitch should remain high with fluids that digest slowly. Fluids digesting quickly should reduce the weight of the gut — easing the pain of the stitch.

The results tended to support the theory. Fluids digesting slowly led to an increase in stitch intensity that was more than double that of the fast digesting drinks.

Plunkett and Hopkins also tested several strategies designed to relieve the stitch. There were three that proved most effective.

• Wait 2-3 hours before exercising after a large (1 liter or more) drink or meal.

• When you get a stitch, bend forward and tighten your abdominal muscles, while breathing out through pursed lips. The lower position of the diaphragm and increased contraction of the abdominals are designed to reduce tension on the ligaments.

• Try wearing a light wide belt around your waist. This is designed to move your abdominal contents upward and inward — reducing tension on ligaments between gut and diaphragm.
 

2LAP

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Feb 22, 2002
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Originally posted by BVSoos
Sometimes when I go very fast I feel some pain on my right-side (liver?) that causes me to go slower ....
Anyone knows whta causes this and what I can do to prevent this?
Tia
Most people (your the first I've heard of) don't get a stitch on a bike. The stitch is caused by a spasm of the diaphram and can be caused by a number of things. One thing is for sure, eating and drinking too much too soon before you ride will give ya a stitch.
 

Aztec

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Jul 8, 2003
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I flirted with one -- for the first time on a bike, I might add -- just the other day. It hit me when I started a very steep (17+% grade) with insufficient warmup. I had a little too much water a little too close to that effort as well. Once it started, there was no getting rid of it. Thankfully it was mild, but it did hang on for close to an hour to nearly the top of the mountain. I should add that my HR was 175-180, after only maybe 120-130 before the climb, so it was a bit of a shock.

I got them from running as a kid, and it;s definitely worse if you stretch backward (arch your back). I go with the ligament theory, not the lactic acid theory.
 

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