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Pelvic pain

Pelvic pain is felt below your bellybutton. It may come on suddenly and severely, or could be mild and last for months.

See your GP as soon as possible if you're experiencing pelvic pain.

In some cases, women may be referred to a gynaecologist (a specialist in the female reproductive system). Sometimes the cause of pelvic pain can't be identified.

The following information is about pelvic pain in women, as men are rarely affected.

It covers the possible causes of:

It aims to give you a better idea of the cause of your pelvic pain, but you shouldn't use it to self-diagnose your condition. Always see your GP to get their medical opinion.

For information and advice about pelvic or abdominal pain during pregnancy, see our pages on pelvic pain in pregnancy, ectopic pregnancy and miscarriage.

Sudden, unexpected pelvic pain

Pelvic pain that comes on suddenly for the first time is called acute pelvic pain. 

See your GP immediately if you have acute pelvic pain. They'll be able to investigate the cause and arrange any treatment you may need.

Common causes of acute pelvic pain

The most common causes of acute pelvic pain in women who aren't pregnant are:

Less common reasons for acute pelvic pain

Less common causes of acute pelvic pain include:

Long-term pelvic pain

If you've had pelvic pain for 6 months or more that either comes and goes or is continuous, it's known as chronic pelvic pain.

Chronic pelvic pain is more intense than ordinary period pain and lasts longer. It affects around 1 in 6 women.

See your GP if you have chronic pelvic pain. They'll investigate the cause and arrange any necessary treatment.

Common causes of chronic pelvic pain

The most common causes of chronic pelvic pain are:

Less common reasons for chronic pelvic pain

Less common causes of chronic pelvic pain include: