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How can I treat discomfort under my rib cage?

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Practicing since : 2002
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i have been having a uncomforatable feeling in my right side under my rib cage over the past few months. been to the dr and my liver enzymes are very low. My dr says I shouldnt worry that it is not my liver.. However I am a drinker for many years. I am 40 5'4 and about 137 pounds.. she thinks it might be that I pulled a muscle on that side and I should do physical therapy.. I dont think thats it but,... any answers would really help
Posted Tue, 8 May 2012 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Answered by Dr. Robert Galamaga 19 hours later
Hello and thanks for the query.

Your question is a good one and I will try to provide you with some good information and recommendations regarding what is going on.

If we think about the right side of the rib cage we consider organs which are in that area which could cause discomfort including the liver, gallbladder or the bowels and certainly the musculoskeletal system. I am assuming your liver enzymes are normal or just below normal which generally is not a concern.

The best course of action right now for you would be to complete a course of physical therapy. If you see no improvement in 7 to 10 days then I suggest you revisit the issue with your doctor who may then order an ultrasound of the liver or a CT scan of the abdomen.

You might also try taking some ibuprofen over the counter as prescribed on the bottle to see if this helps minimize your discomfort. Rib and chest wall discomfort is actually a very common cause of pain in this area. You might also do some warm soaks in the bathtub a couple of times per day to see if that helps.

I thank you again for submitting your qiery and hope that my response serves to be helpful and informative. If you have any additional concerns I would be happy to address them.


Dr. Galamaga

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