Get your Health question answered in 3 easy steps
A Doctor will be with you shortly
Ask a Doctor Now
178 Doctors are Online

Having pain on right side below rib cage extending to back. Underlying cause?

Feb 2014
User rating for this question
Very Good
Answered by

Orthopaedic Surgeon, Joint Replacement
Practicing since : 2004
Answered : 5931 Questions
I am having pain on my right side just below the rib cage and extending to my back. The pain is more acute at night. What is the possible cause. I am 74 years old male
Posted Sat, 7 Sep 2013 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Answered by Dr. Saurabh Gupta 45 minutes later
Brief Answer:
There are three possibilities

Detailed Answer:

For the severe pain under the left rib cage, three possibilities are coming to my mind, these include:

1) The first possibility is of Peptic ulcer disease or Hiatal hernia. Diagnosis can be confirmed by upper GI endoscopy. Try raising the head of your bed about four inches with blocks. It also might help to avoid eating or drinking for two hours before you lie down. To help control the stomach acid, one should not drink alcohol or drinks with caffeine in them, or eat chocolate or spicy or greasy foods. Also take some antacid but if the symptoms are severe, then you may need drugs like proton pump inhibitors.

2) The second possibility is of pancreatitis as it may cause upper left abdominal pain which is worse when bending over or sitting. Pancreatic enzymes like serum amylase and lipase should be measured to rule out any pancreatic cause.

3) The last possibility is of any kidney stones which may present as such sharp pain radiating to the back. For this purpose you need to get an ultrasound abdomen and kidneys done.

I suggest you to consult a physician and get an ultrasound upper left abdomen, pancreatic enzymes, upper GI endoscopy to rule out any peptic ulcers and a chest x-ray done to rule out these causes.

Hope this answers your query. If you have additional questions or follow up queries then please do not hesitate in writing to us. I will be happy to answer your queries.

Wishing you good health.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Share on Facebook
Share on Twitter
Share on Google+
Question is related to
Lab Tests
Medical Topics

The user accepted the expert's answer

Ask an Orthopaedic Surgeon

© Ebix, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
All the information, content and live chat provided on the site is intended to be for informational purposes only, and not a substitute for professional or medical advice. You should always speak with your doctor before you follow anything that you read on this website. Any health question asked on this site will be visible to the people who browse this site. Hence, the user assumes the responsibility not to divulge any personally identifiable information in the question. Use of this site is subject to our Terms & Conditions
Already Rated.
Your rating:

Ask a Doctor