Abdominal pain on the right side: 8 causes and what to do (2023)

Right-sided abdominal pain is often caused by gas build-up or bowel disease. But it could also be a sign of appendicitis or gallstones, especially if the pain is severe. Abdominal pain is usually not serious if it is mild and not associated with other symptoms.

Depending on the cause of the pain, pain in the right lower abdomen can usually be treated with painkillers, anti-inflammatories and a change in diet. However, more serious conditions, such as appendicitis or gallstones, may require surgical intervention. So it's important to get an investigation if you're not sure what's causing the pain or if the pain is unbearable.

Whenever pain occurs, you should determine when it occurs and monitor any other accompanying symptoms, whether they are radiating to other areas or are being aggravated or ameliorated by anything. This information can be useful for a doctor to confirm the diagnosis of your pain and take appropriate action.

Abdominal pain on the right side: 8 causes and what to do (1)

Causes of right-sided abdominal pain

The most common causes of right-sided abdominal pain include:

1. Gas accumulation

Right-sided abdominal pain may simply be the result of gas-induced stretching of the bowel. This problem can occur in people of all ages, from infants to the elderly. Typically, this type of pain is severe and feels like a cramp and usually occurs after a meal. This symptom is also common in pregnancy, especially in the third trimester, as constipation and other irregularities interfere with normal bowel function.

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Excess gas can also be caused by certain foods that take longer to digest and end up fermenting in the gut for a long time. do you see thatFood can cause bloatingand hinchazon.

Other symptoms:Bloating, loss of appetite, heaviness in the stomach, increased belching or gas and bloating. Gas-related pain can be constant and worsen for brief moments. Read more aboutSymptoms of Gas Pain.

What to do:Drinking plenty of water is important to regulate bowel function and promote normal digestion; However, in some cases, your doctor may recommend laxatives such as lactulose, magnesium hydroxide, or bisacodyl. check out someHome remedies for flatulencewhich you can use to complement your medical treatment.

2. Reizdarmsyndrom (IBS)

People with IBS often experience abdominal pain or cramps, which can be constant or temporary. Discomfort is usually relieved after a bowel movement.

Other symptoms:In addition to abdominal pain, diarrhea, constipation, bloating and gas can also occur. The exact cause of IBS is unknown, but it's common in people with anxiety, depression, or mental disorders.

What to do:You should see a doctor to assess your pain and rule out other causes so treatment can be started. The doctor may ask questions about your pain (such as how it usually starts or how bad it is) and the quality of your stool. In addition to prescribing medications such as scopolamine (which can help with colic), dietary changes are usually indicated. These dietary changes can include eating smaller portions, eating more slowly, and avoiding certain foods like beans, cabbage, and other fermentable carbohydrates.

3. Gallstones

Pain in the right abdominal area can also indicate a gallstone. It usually starts as a spasm in the upper right abdomen or stomach area and can last minutes to hours. Often this pain can radiate to the left side or back. It can be very uncomfortable and make you feel indigestion. See our article ongallstonesto understand what can cause them.

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Other symptoms:In some cases, gallstones can also cause loss of appetite, nausea, and vomiting. Gallbladder stones that recede and cause inflammation in the gallbladder can also lead to fever, chills, and yellow skin or eyes.

What to do:Once a gallstone has been confirmed by ultrasound, the stone can be removed laparoscopically. It is important to realize that surgery is not always necessary; For example, the presence of gallstones without symptoms does not require surgery. Small gallstones can be treated at homenatural medicine.

Surgery is usually indicated for people who have diabetes or a weakened immune system, or who have very large gallstones or a heavily calcified gallbladder.

4. Appendicitis

Appendicitis can cause right-sided abdominal pain that begins as a spasm around your belly button or abdominal area. After about 6 hours, the inflammation worsens and the pain increases. It becomes more pronounced in the lower abdomen, usually near the groin.

Other symptoms:There may also be loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, fever above 40°C (or 104°F), increased tenderness in the lower right abdomen, and lower abdominal distension. Fill out our onlineSymptoms of appendicitistest to determine if you are at risk of appendicitis.

What to do:If appendicitis is suspected, it is recommended to consult a doctor immediately. Surgery is often required to remove the appendix. Learn more about howAppendicitisleft untreated and the possible complications that can arise if left untreated.

5. Acute Hepatitis

Abdominal pain on the right side of the body, especially in the upper abdomen, is a common symptom of hepatitis. Hepatitis is an inflammation of the liver that can have many causes, including bacterial or viral infections, alcoholism, drug use, autoimmune disorders, or degenerative diseases. Read more about what can cause thisacute Hepatitis.

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Other symptoms:Hepatitis can also cause nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, headache, dark urine, yellow skin or eyes, or pale stools. See which symptoms are specificHepatitis A.

What to do:With hepatitis, you need to rest, drink enough fluids and avoid difficult-to-digest foods. Your doctor may prescribe medications such as interferon (for hepatitis C) or immunosuppressants (for autoimmune diseases).

6. Inflammation of the pancreas

Pain associated with pancreatitis usually occurs in the upper abdomen and radiates to the back and left shoulder. It can occur right after drinking alcohol or after a meal.

Other symptoms:This pain may be accompanied by nausea, vomiting, fever, low blood pressure, a palpable mass in the affected area, and yellowing of the skin.

What to do:If pancreatitis is suspected, you should immediately consult a doctor. Tests such as an ultrasound or CT scan may be ordered, and treatment may include pain medication and antibiotics. In some cases, surgery may be the best way to treat pancreatitis.

7. Dor Menstruation

Some women may experience pain in the ovary, which is actively ovulating. This usually occurs in the middle of the menstrual cycle. The pain is not very intense but can last for days. Since ovulation occurs alternately in the ovaries (i.e. one month on the left side, next month on the right side), women often have an idea of ​​which side they are ovulating due to the uncomfortable feeling. Additional pain may occur if the woman also has a history of endometriosis or ovarian cysts, or if the woman has an ectopic pregnancy.

This type of pain is to be expected, and while it can be intense at times, it is usually not severe.

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Other symptoms:Abdominal pain associated with a menstrual cycle can often feel like a twisting, sharp, or cramping pain. In a 28-day cycle, it usually occurs 14 days before menstruation.

What to do:Because this pain usually lasts about a day, you may find relief by taking a pain reliever such as acetaminophen or an anti-inflammatory such as ibuprofen. However, if you have other doubts, seek advice from a gynecologist. Pain related to hormonal changes can usually be treated by startingbirth control.

You can also relieve abdominal pain with non-drug options, such as B. by applying a warm compress or by taking natural herbal remedies.

8. Kidney stones

Kidney or bladder stones can block the flow of urine and cause moderate to severe pain. The pain is usually felt on the affected side and may radiate to the back or genitals.

The pain can usually start out as mild. It commonly occurs between the ages of 30 and 60 and is equally common in men and women.

Other symptoms:In addition to pain, kidney stones can also cause nausea, vomiting, chills, painful urination, bleeding with urination, and even fever if infected.

What to do:You should see a doctor and be evaluated if you notice any of the symptoms above. Your doctor may prescribe anti-inflammatory, pain-relieving, and anticholinergic medications to relieve your symptoms. Read more about howKidney stonesCan be treated.

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When to go to the hospital

Warning signs that indicate an urgent need for hospitalization include:

  • Any sudden, very severe pain that is localized to a specific spot or gets worse over time
  • fever or difficulty breathing
  • High blood pressure, fast heartbeat, cold sweats or general malaise
  • Vomiting and diarrhea that are not resolved

In these cases, the doctor may request diagnostic tests, such as ultrasound or computed tomography, in addition to evaluating all signs and symptoms.


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