Organomegaly (Abdominal Mass) Definition, Causes, Symptoms

Learn all about Organomegaly, the term used for abdominal mass; its causes and symptoms. Organomegaly involves the enlargement of body organs. Many different factors may cause such enlargement. While some causes are benign, others are more serious.

Heart enlargement, liver enlargement, and spleen enlargement called cardiomegaly, hepatomegaly, and splenomegaly, respectively represents three examples of abnormal organ enlargement. Autoimmune disorders often cause organomegaly as well.

The location of the mass and its firmness, texture, and other qualities can provide clues to its cause. Organomegaly most often manifests as a symptom of a disorder, rather than being the disorder itself. Hepatomegaly, for example, can result from several diverse medical problems, ranging from infection to tumors. Congestive heart failure frequently facilitates cardiomegaly. Organ enlargement usually coincides with other symptoms relating to a particular disorder. With various liver dysfunctions, jaundice, or yellowing skin, frequently occurs alongside the organomegaly.

Many abdominal masses are discovered incidentally during routine physical examination. When they are present symptomatically, abdominal masses are most frequently associated with pain or digestive problems. However, depending on the cause, masses may be associated with other signs and symptoms, such as jaundice or bowel obstruction.

In treatment, many cases are appropriate candidates for therapy but therapeutic decisions require a definitive diagnosis. It is important to note that imaging findings are rarely sufficient for diagnosis in these cases. Examples of exceptions include radiographic identification of gastric volvulus or pregnancy and ultrasonographic identification of intestinal intussusception.

Organomegaly (Abdominal Mass) Definition, Causes, Symptoms

Organomegaly (Abdominal Mass)

An abdominal mass is swelling in one part of the belly area (abdomen). An abdominal mass is any localized swelling or enlargement of any organ in the human abdomen. Depending on location it may be due to enlargement of liver, spleen, pancreas, kidneys and due to a tumor in the abdomen.

Organomegaly Definition

The term refers to the enlargement of visceral organs. It originated from the words organo, which means an organ, and megas, which means large. Organomegaly is the abnormal enlargement of organs. It is the abnormal enlargement of viscous or of is also called as splanchnomegaly or visceromagaly.

Organomegaly Causes

Organomegaly may be caused due to the underlying factors:

  • Abdominal aortic aneurysm can cause a pulsating mass around the navel.
  • Bladder distention (urinary bladder over-filled with fluid) can cause a firm mass in the center of the lower abdomen above the pelvic bones. In extreme cases it can reach as far up as the navel.
  • Cholecystitis can cause a very tender mass that is felt below the liver in the right-upper quadrant (occasionally).
  • Colon cancer can cause a mass almost anywhere in the abdomen.
  • Crohn’s disease or bowel obstruction can cause many tender, sausage-shaped masses anywhere in the abdomen.
  • Diverticulitis can cause a mass that is usually located in the left-lower quadrant.
  • Gallbladder tumor can cause a tender, irregularly shaped mass in the right-upper quadrant.
  • Hydronephrosis (fluid-filled kidney) can cause a smooth, spongy-feeling mass in one or both sides or toward the back (flank area).
  • Kidney cancer can sometimes cause a mass in the abdomen.
  • Liver cancer can cause a firm, lumpy mass in the right upper quadrant.
  • Liver enlargement (hepatomegaly) can cause a firm, irregular mass below the right rib cage, or on the left side in the stomach area.
  • Neuroblastoma, a cancerous tumor often found in the lower abdomen can cause a mass (this cancer mainly occurs in children and infants).
  • Ovarian cyst can cause a smooth, rounded, rubbery mass above the pelvis in the lower abdomen.
  • Pancreatic abscess can cause a mass in the upper abdomen in the epigastric area.
  • Pancreatic pseudocyst can cause a lumpy mass in the upper abdomen in the epigastric area.
  • Renal cell carcinoma can cause a smooth, firm, but not tender mass near the kidney (usually only affects one kidney).
  • Spleen enlargement (splenomegaly) can sometimes be felt in the left-upper quadrant.
  • Stomach cancer can cause a mass in the left-upper abdomen in the stomach area (epigastric) if the is large.
  • Uterine leiomyoma (fibroids) can cause a round, lumpy mass above the pelvis in the lower abdomen
  • Volvulus can cause a mass anywhere in the abdomen.
  • Ureteropelvic junction obstruction can cause a mass in the lower abdomen.
  • Bowel obstruction
  • Gallbladder tumor

Organomegaly Symptoms

Organomegaly shows the following signs and symptoms:

  • Nausea, fever, or the inability to keep food down for several days
  • Bloody stools
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Vomiting blood
  • The pain occurs during pregnancy
  • The abdomen is tender to the touch
  • Pain is the result of an injury to the abdomen in the previous days
  • Pain lasts for several days

These symptoms may occur due to an internal inflammation, infection, or bleeding that requires treatment as soon as possible. Less commonly, some of these symptoms may be caused by colorectal, ovarian, or an abdominal cancer.

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