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Extreme pain in abdomen, felt like broken ribs. CT scan, urine test normal. Gall bladder issue?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2005
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I recently went to bed and awoke with extreme pain (Tender to touch) that radiated from the very lower side of my right abdomen ribs. The pain felt like a broken floating rib. I had spicy foods for dinner that evening. Went to ER, they did a CT scan non contrast and they took a urine sample. Nothing came up irregular in urine. CT scan was normal or all organs appeared to be normal. They did not see stones. Was given pain medication and to treat as if it was a rib muscle or muscle issue. I did work out that day but did not have pain prior to going to sleep.
Can this be a gall bladder issue without stone or kidney issue?
Posted Mon, 16 Apr 2012 in Abdominal Pain
Answered by Dr. Mitaly 7 hours later

Thanks for posting your query.

Pain below the rib with normal investigations can probably be due to:
1) Peptic ulcer disease:. Diagnosis can be confirmed by upper GI endoscopy. 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.

2) Gall bladder disease- can be stones or cholecystitis. An examination by ultrasound scan will help in diagnosis.

3) Bloating due to excessive gas, GERD (Gastroesophageal reflux disease) .

The simple measures that are likely to help you are-
1. Certain foods, such as cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, brussels sprouts and legumes (beans) may worsen symptoms.
2. Dietary fiber may lessen symptoms.
3. You should drink plenty of water, and avoid soda, which may cause gas and abdominal discomfort.
4. You can use some over the counter drugs like Pepto Bismol or Tums for symptomatic relief.
5. Avoid spicy foods, fats and fried foods.
6. Maintain adequate hydration.
7. Do not lie down immediately after meals.

If the symptoms are recurrent consider getting a Ultrasound scan done to rule out any Gall Bladder disease.

Hope this answers your query. Please accept the answer in case you do not have follow up query.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Extreme pain in abdomen, felt like broken ribs. CT scan, urine test normal. Gall bladder issue? 15 hours later
I would assume if there was a tumor of any sort that would have been detected in the CT Scan - correct?
Answered by Dr. Mitaly 11 hours later

Thanks for the follow up.

Any tumour or mass of any sort would have been easily detected by CT scan. So possibility of that does not seem to be there.
It would be better to get a USG scan done.

I hope, this answers your query. Please accept my answer in case you have no follow up queries.

Wishing you Good Health!

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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