Are you suffering from nausea and vomiting in addition to chronic stomach pain? These are signs of an unusual disorder called Median Arcuate Ligament Syndrome (MALS).
MALS (medial arcuate ligament syndrome) is a rare condition that causes constant and severe abdominal pain, typically when exercising or food intake. The problem is caused when the median arcuate artery, an elastic band connecting the diaphragm and the spine, can compress the celiac artery, restricting blood flow to digestive organs. MALS may manifest with various signs and symptoms that can last for a long time, making eating and exercise difficult for those suffering from the condition.
This section will explain the symptoms of MALS, its causes, the diagnosis, and the treatment options available.
The symptoms of MALS can vary and be mistaken for other medical conditions. Common signs include abdominal pain, nausea, loss of weight, and diarrhea that worsens after eating or exercising. The debilitating symptoms can worsen during exercise or when consuming certain types of food and drinks, significantly reducing the quality of living.
Diagnosing MALS isn’t always easy, as the symptoms may overlap with other digestive disorders. Numerous tests can be requested to help determine if you suffer from MALS. They could include an ultrasound scan, CT scan, MRI, and angiogram.
Angiograms are when your doctor injects dye into your body’s bloodstream to detect blood flow in your abdomen. They can also identify obstructions or narrowness in the blood vessels that supply digestion organs. You can also consult a reputable physician like Danny Shouhed, M.D. who specializes in MALS treatment and procedures.
Based on the extent of the condition, A treatment plan will be established by your doctor once you’ve been diagnosed as having MALS. The treatment options available for MALS can range from lifestyle modifications to surgical procedures, and here are some of the most popular options:
- Lifestyle Changes – Some individuals suffering from MALS might relieve their symptoms through lifestyle adjustments such as maintaining a nutritious diet, avoiding trigger foods, and incorporating exercise into their routines.
- Medications – To help manage symptoms that are associated with MALS, pain relievers and anti-nausea medicines can be administered.
- Celiac Block Injection – Celiac block injections involve delivering a local anesthetic and steroid into the area surrounding the celiac artery to ease discomfort and increase blood flow. Or you can also avail of a minimally-invasive laparoscopic surgery to address MALS and correct the disorder.
- Endovascular Treatment – Endovascular treatment involves inserting catheters to access the affected artery and then widening it using either a balloon or stent. This minimally invasive procedure temporarily relieves some individuals suffering from MALS.
- Surgery – a MALS procedure or surgery might be needed when modifications to your lifestyle, medications, or endovascular treatment do not improve the situation. The ligament causing the compression is either removed or cut, allowing blood to flow back to your digestive organs.
MALS is often misdiagnosed rare condition that can cause frequent abdominal nausea, pain, vomiting, weight loss, and diarrhea. If you’re experiencing these signs getting medical assistance to determine if you have MALS is essential. While there’s no one-size-fits-all treatment for MALS, various options, such as lifestyle adjustments, medication administration, injection of a celiac block, or surgery, are available.
You take control of your overall health by understanding the signs, diagnoses, and treatments related to MALS. Get the help necessary to lead a pain-free life. Book an appointment right now to begin your journey to being healthier for the future.