- Education and Science
Where Is My Stomach Located - The Answer
Who among us has not complained about a stomach ache? You may be surprised to know that often what we call a stomach ache is not our stomach at all. So where is your stomach located in you body? The quick answer is that your stomach is located between your esophagus and your intestines, just below your diaphragm. This means is that pain that we often believe to be an upset stomach is actually an intestinal difficulty, not a stomach problem.
To better explain exactly where you stomach is located, think of the area from your diaphragm down and around your rib cage. This is essentially your abdominal cavity, and your stomach resides in the upper part of this area. The top of your stomach is located right against the diaphragm, just in front of the pancreas. To hold the contents of the stomach in place, there are two sphincters, one at the top and one at the bottom. The esophageal sphincter divides the upper tract and the pyloric sphincter divides the stomach from the small intestines.
Surrounding the stomach you will find the by parasympathetic and orthosympathetic plexuses. These are networks of nerves and blood vessels which regulate the motor activity of the stomach muscles and the secretions activity.
The stomach is divided into four sections with each section providing for a unique function. Those sections are Cardia, Fundus, Body, and Pylorus. The Cardia is the location the upper area where the esophagus empties into the stomach. The Fundus is the upper area of the stomach that makes up the upper curvature of the organ. The Body (also called the Corpus) the largest section and makes up the bulk of the central region of the stomach. Finally, the Pylorus is the lower section of the stomach that facilitates the movement of the contents into the small intestines.
An average adult human being, has an empty stomach volume of around 45 milliliters. However, as anyone who has eaten a large feast knows, the stomach is capable of significant expansion. While it might normally expand to hold around a liter of food, it is capable of expanding to hold as much as 2 to 3 liters. You may feel over stuffed when you expand your stomach beyond its normal range when you eat a very large meal, or simply eat more than normal. This will cause no health issues, generally speaking, but you should not be eating to the point of feeling over-full with any regularity. That is a fairly straight forward signal that you are eating too much.
While you may have only wanted to know “where is my stomach located,” I hope you find it interesting to go a bit beyond the simply physiological placement, and discuss it in a bit more detail. So remember, the next time you think you have a stomach ache, it may not be your stomach at all. Of course, now, you will be able to tell.