There are several types of staphylococcus bacteria, all of which are commonly referred to by doctor's and lay people alike as staph. Staph can invade any part of the body, and usually enters a patient through an open cut or wound. Depending on many factors, including the type of staph infection, the area of your body in which it appears, and how long it has been in your body undetected, staph infections can be deadly 1. There are several types of illnesses caused by staph bacteria whose symptoms are felt largely in the abdominal area. A knowledge of the symptoms of these sorts of staph infections can literally save your life, since a staph infection that has spread into the blood stream, respiratory tract or nervous system can be fatal 1.

Is This an Emergency?

If you are experiencing serious medical symptoms, seek emergency treatment immediately.

Staphylococcal Food Poisoning

While not common, staph infections can be ingested with food contaminated with toxins produced by staph bacteria. Usually the culprit is food that is high in sugar or salt content, and has been sitting out for too long. Examples of food likely to develop staph bacteria if let out to sit for too long include pork, potato salad, and cream filled pastries. When you eat food laced with staph, the bacteria will attack your bowels. Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramps and diarrhea--all of which can lead to dehydration. If you have eaten food contaminated with staph bacterial, symptoms will appear within six hours and can last up to three days. Staphylococcal food poisoning is considered more serious and longer lasting when it occurs in the very young and the very old. There is no medication to treat this bacteria, and people with staphylococcal food poisoning are not considered contagious.

Toxic Shock Syndrome

Toxic shock syndrome occurs when the toxins released by staph bacteria grow in an area of the body where there is limited oxygen. Although toxic shock syndrome is most common in women who use tampons during menstruation, it can occur in other areas. Many toxic shock syndrome symptoms occur in the abdominal area, and include vomiting, stomach cramps and diarrhea.

Urinary tract infections in IBS patients

Staphylococcus saprophyticus accounts for anywhere from 5 to 15 percent of all urinary tract infections, or UTIs. In people that also have irritable bowel syndrome, in addition to pain and difficulty urinating, symptoms also include lower abdominal pains.

Risks of Abdominal Surgery

You are particularly at risk for contracting an abdominal staph infection immediately following abdominal surgery 1. Staph bacteria is prevalent in hospitals--and whether you had an appendectomy or an abdominal hernia operation, your post-surgical team will likely take precautions to ward off staph infection 1. Symptoms of an abdominal staph infection following abdominal area surgery include lymph node swelling, pain and swelling around your incision site, and the development of red boils or styes around the incision 1.

Shared Symptoms

Regardless of where staph infection enters, whether on a cut to your abdomen or a cut on your finger, common or shared symptoms include:

  • swollen lymph nodes
  • pain or severe swelling around an area of your skin that has been punctured,
  • red boils or styes 1