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Have a dull ache in lower back after swallowing food. Doesn't hurt while walking or sitting. Advise?

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General Surgeon
Practicing since : 2008
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I have a dull ache in my lower right back after I swallow food? Doesn't hurt while walking or sitting? I have strain muscles throughout my back but this feels different? What could it be?
Posted Tue, 9 Jul 2013 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Answered by Dr. Grzegorz Stanko 53 minutes later

Thank you for the query.

Lower right back pain associated with swallowing food can be caused by esophagus narrowing, esophagus inflammation, stomach issues (like peptic ulcer, stomach inflammation, Helicobacter Pylori infection), gallstones.

If the pain is present during the swallowing (like you feel the food stuck or irritates some part of esophagus), esophagus narrowing or inflammation is most probable.
If the pain appears after the food is swallowed (after you stop feeling it in the esophagus), peptic ulcer (or other stomach problem) or gallstones are most probable.

Stomach issues give upper middle abdominal pain, nausea, chest burning. The pain is no localized in one particular spot.

Gallstones pain is more in the right, can be present in the back or radiate to the back. Nausea and vomiting can be present. The pain is usually triggered by fatty foods, spicy foods or alcohol.

I suggest you to visit your doctor and have some basic tests. Abdominal ultrasound (will tell about the gallstones), blood work, liver tests (AST,ALT,GGTP), bilirubin, urine analysis should be done at first.

If all this tests will be negative, gastroscopy should be done as a next step.

In a meanwhile please avoid fatty foods, spicy foods, alcohol and coffee.

Hope this will help. Feel free to ask further questions.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Have a dull ache in lower back after swallowing food. Doesn't hurt while walking or sitting. Advise? 4 hours later
So I chew my food up and swallow it. About 3seconds later I feel I dull ache in my lower back on the right. What does this sound like to you?
How would my stomach where food is going be tied to a dull pain in my lower back on the right side? Doesn't hurt any other time. Only about 4sec after I swallow.
Answered by Dr. Grzegorz Stanko 9 hours later
It sounds like esophagus issue. It can be an inflammation due to acid reflux or narrowing. Gastroscopy will tell.

All organs in the chest and abdominal cavity are connected to the spine with nerve fibers. As this is sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system (we can not control it, spinal cord and brain can) the pain in one location can be sensed in very distant area. For example appedicitis pain starts in the upper middle abdomen (appendix is in the lower right abdomen).
So as this pain is associated with swallowing, such pain location seems to be caused by gastrointestinal issue.

Hope this will help.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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