Abdomen | Definition, Etymology, Synonyms & Anatomy


Abdomen is the part of our body. It is also known as tummy, tucky, midriff, or belly. It is the largest space in our body and holds many organs of our body. The area that surrounds the belly is known as the abdominal cavity.


It is the part of the body between the thorax (chest) and the pelvis. In Urdu, we describe it as پیٹ. In Hindi, we write it as पेट(pet).


This word derives from the Middle French abdomen and Latin abdomen perhaps from abdo “conceal” from abs “away” plus do “put place”.


  • Stomach
  • Belly
  • Tummy
  • Gut
  • Midriff
  • Intestines
  • Breadbasket


The muscles in the belly keep organs in place by balancing the inner pressure of the abdomen. The deep muscles of the belly combine with muscles in the back and make up the basic muscles. Also, they assist in keeping the body steady and balanced and also protect the backbone.

The main functions of the belly comprise breathing, digestion balance, and movement. All of the organs that are in the tummy are connected with digestion. The belly is important for breathing through the accessory muscles of respiration. Some of its main functions are:

  • Digestion
  • Absorption of nutrients
  • Waste elimination
  • Production of hormones and enzymes

Structure & Anatomy of Abdomen


It contains several essential organs such as:

  • Stomach
  • Bladder
  • Liver
  • Pancreas
  • Large intestine
  • Small intestine
  • Spleen
  • Kidneys
  • Uterus
  • Fallopian tubes
  • Ovaries
  • Arteries
  • Veins


In the abdomen, the layers from superficial to deep involve:

  • Skin
  • Subcutaneous tissues, which is further divided into:
  1. Camper’s fascia
  2. Scarper’s fascia
  • External oblique muscle
  • Internal oblique muscle
  • Transversus abdominis muscle
  • Transversalis fascia
  • Parietal peritoneum


The ligaments in the abdomen are:

  • Inguinal ligament
  • Lacunar ligament
  • Pectineal ligament

Inguinal ligament:

This ligament connects to the fascia lata inferiorly. It attaches the internal obliquis muscle and transversus abdominis at the lateral 2/3 & 1/3.

Lacunar ligament:

This ligament is in the inguinal region. It attached pubic tubercle to the pecten pubis.

Pectineal ligament:

This ligament is a thick mob of fibrous tissue. It extends from the lacunar ligament.


The muscles in the abdomen are divided into two components which are:

  • Anterolateral Muscles
  • Posterior Muscles

Anterolateral Muscles:

It includes five paired muscles which are:

  • External oblique
  • Internal oblique
  • Transversus abdominis
  • Rectus abdominis
  • Pyramidalis

Posterior Muscles:

This muscles includes

  • Quadratus
  • Psoas major
  • Psoas minor
  • Iliacus

Parts of Abdomens

Upper Abdomen:

This part of the belly is among the ribs and the belly button. The pain in the upper part of the belly is due to:

  • Gallstones
  • Hepatitis
  • Liver abscess
  • Gas
  • Kidney stone
  • Heart attack
  • Hiatal hernia
  • Gastritis
  • Peptic ulcer
  • Gastroparesis
  • Functional dyspepsia
  • Pneumonia
  • Ruptured spleen

Lower Abdomen:

This part of the abdomen is under the belly button.  The pain in the lower part of the belly is due to the:

  • Digestive disorders
  • Trapped gas
  • Kidney infection
  • Colon cancer
  • Ulcers
  • Infections
  • Celiac disease

Quadrants and Regions

The abdomen is divided into 4 quadrants and 9 regions.


The quadrants in the belly include:

  • Right upper quadrant
  • Left upper quadrant
  • Right lower quadrant
  • Left lower quadrant


The nine regions in the belly include:

  • Right hypochondriac
  • Left hypochondriac
  • Right lumbar
  • Left Lumbar
  • Right iliac
  • Left iliac
  • Epigastric
  • Umbilical
  • Hypogastric/Pubic
  • Diaphragm

Abdominal pain

This pain feels like uneasiness in the belly area. We often think of this pain as stomach pain. The pain in the belly is often due to the:

  • Food poisoning
  • Food allergies
  • Lactose intolerance
  • Stomach virus
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

Which organs are in the lower left abdomen?

  • Ureter
  • Uterus
  • Small Intestines
  • Large Intestines

What is a groin?

It is the area where the upper thigh meets with the lowest part of the belly.

Which is the useless organ in the abdomen?

The appendix is the useless organ in the belly.

Mention the causes of pain in the abdomen in females.

  • Stomach ulcer
  • Menstruation
  • Miscarriage
  • Reproductive complications

Mention the name of the pair of organs in belly.

Kidneys are the pair of organs in the belly.

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