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Do abdominal organs "float" when you are in water?
Old 07-11-2016, 11:21 PM   #1
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Do abdominal organs "float" when you are in water?

This is going to be a bit weird, but bear with me...

We have had an in-ground pool for many years. Long ago I noted an odd effect: After I had been in the pool for a while, and then went up the steps to get out, as soon as my abdomen came up out of the water, it felt like my abdominal organs must have been floating, and suddenly sank! - There was a sudden internal feeling of heaviness, and I learned to stand there for a moment until I got accustomed to it. A few minutes later, I wouldn't even think about it. It was that way all the time, wondered why. Seemed like no ill effect later, just an odd feeling that passed on the steps. Always repeatable.

After the end of pool season a few years ago, I had an unexpected emergency gall bladder removal. Went from no symptoms to big trouble in hours. A bit after that, I had an inguinal hernia repair. The hernia/possible hernia problem was noted about a month prior to the emergency gall bladder removal. Months of recovery. When pool season came around again, I was in good shape. The first time I came out of the pool... I just walked out! The weird "settling of organs" feeling was gone! It's been a few years now, and that feeling is but a memory. What happened?

Which made me wonder... when one is submerged in water, do abdominal organs "float"? That seems unlikely, doesn't it?
Could it be a change of abdominal wall shape when submerged versus out of water that allows organs to sit differently? I really don't know how to view it. Something has changed.
I should point out that excessive rotundness is not an issue here, as I am one of the natural thins who can eat just about anything (that agrees with me and doesn't make me sick) without gaining weight. I do not have a gut on me, and using persistence forecasting, if I don't have one now in my 60s, I probably never will.

Any thoughts?

-- Telly, the D-I-Y guy --
Two fools dancing on the hands of time
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Old 07-12-2016, 04:00 AM   #2
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You might have had a hernia problem, which was relieved when your body is suspended in water. I am no medical expert, so will try to visualize and explain the problem in layman's terms.

When you are out of the water, the internal organs are "hung" by tissues, which ultimately transfer the weight to the bone structure. The tissues have to sag some under gravity force.

When in the water, the weight of the organs was taken off the bones. The internal organs are now supported through the buoyancy force acting on all around the external skin surface. The internal tissues and ligaments are now relieved of the weight of the organs. The organs are now floating instead of being hung.

So, some settling of the organs should be expected when one steps out of the water. What I find unusual is that a thin person would be able to feel it (I am one myself). This tells me that you must have had some internal hernia without knowing about it for a long time.

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Old 07-12-2016, 10:22 AM   #3
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Could be that the internal organs in places were not tightly attached to the bones by the connective tissues in a few places.
After your surgery, where they cut and move various things and sew stuff back in place, and this all causes your body to heal itself, the situation of attachment may have improved itself.
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Old 07-12-2016, 03:49 PM   #4
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Most of your gastrointestinal tract, omentum and spleen are suspended within your peritoneal cavity, whereas your kidneys lie posteriorly, up against the psoas muscles. Hollow organs need mobility because they have to expand when you eat a large meal, and then propel the products of digestion down the intestine. When a woman is pregnant, they move out of the way of the expanding uterus.

Abnormal distension of hollow organs (for example, with gas) activates stretch receptors in their walls, causing bloating and sometimes pain. However, most people do not have the same awareness of what their organs are doing as the OP does.
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