Back pain under ribs: pain in right, in left upper quadrant

This may also occur for those who are trying to care for their health, not to mention those with risk factors. Therefore, these patients are frequent visitors to the doctor's appointment. And during the appeal, often it is the pain under the ribs on the back of the rear. Why do I get this symptom, you can learn only after careful review.

pain in the back and the ribs


When it hurts in the low back below the ribs, gives a well founded fear. Pain in the left or right side of the page are a reflection of the changes in the different body systems. And sometimes become very serious. Therefore, tactics that would be appropriate.

Most patients know if back pain – under the ribs or in the second part, which is connected with the spine. And many cases are proof of that. The pain is often a symptom of pathology of the axial skeleton:

  • Degenerative disk disease.
  • The intervertebral hernia.
  • Spondylosis.
  • Of spondylolisthesis.
  • Spine stenosis.
  • Injuries (bruises, fractures).
  • Tumors.

Special care patients and causes acute girdle pain under the ribs, which brings the greatest suffering and significant limitation of physical activity. But it may be associated not only with diseases of the spine. Intercostal neuralgia, herpes zoster – frequent causes of similar symptoms. In addition, it is in the top quadrant are the internal organs, the destruction of which often causes pain radiating to the back. Such States include:

  • Cardiac pathology.
  • Diseases of the respiratory system.
  • Problems of the digestive system.
  • Diseases of the kidney and urinary tract.

So, pain under the ribs is a common phenomenon, which requires careful and differentiated approach. In fact back problems can occur in many, but not all, is connected with the spine.

Find out why it hurts on the left side under the ribs, only the results of the medical examination and additional investigations. That would not lose time, and soon you find the cause, should be treated in the medical facility.


Pain in the left or right upper quadrant on the back of a fairly common symptom. In many cases the main complaint from patients. So, pain in the low back have the following features:

  • Acute or obtuse.
  • Stabbing, aching, throbbing, shooting, drawing.
  • Appear suddenly or develop gradually.
  • Local or shared.
  • Located on one or both sides (skirted).
  • Localized in the lumbar region, in chest, in the middle of the spine, between the shoulder blades, pain in the abdomen, right or left side.
  • Reproduction in the feet and hands, the neck, the area of the pelvis.
  • Exacerbates the movement of the torso and limbs, pain in the back, with deep breaths, coughing, sneezing.

That is the pain under the ribs can have different colors, each patient is their own. And only one-to-one approach will achieve success in the diagnosis of each case. But in addition to this, the pain in the left or right upper quadrant, there will be other symptoms that will help you make the right conclusion. Knowing them, we can assume this or that problem even without the intervention of a doctor. However, the exact cause for the pain, which will be established only by the specialist.

If back pain in the left ribs, the first thing your doctor will determine the symptoms. This will allow you to form together with the clinical picture of likely pathology.

Diseases of the spine

Pathology of the axial skeleton is the most common cause of localized pain in the back. Can be placed in any part of the body, including hypochondria. The source of pathological impulses becomes a muscle spasm or compression of nerve roots. If the injury is in the lumbar region, pain in the back, you can obtain the next character:

  • Lumbago – acute lumbago.
  • Lumbalgia – pain and deep.
  • Sciatica – broadcast on the leg.

As a rule, are uncomfortable feelings when twisting and leaning while standing or sitting and during walking, i.e. in cases when the load on the axial skeleton. If the affected thoracic, pain in the ribs on the left provoked by deep breathing, pain in the chest when you cough, sneeze or laugh. In addition, there are also other characteristic symptoms:

  • Numbness, tingling, burning, "crawling".
  • Reduced sensitivity.
  • Changes in the tendon reflexes.
  • Fatigue in the legs, feeling of weakness.

On the reverse side of the lesion is determined by muscle cramps and pain points. You can notice the flattening of physiological curvatures or pathological. The movement of the back, is greatly limited.

Pathology of the spine in most cases leads to restriction of physical activity, which has a negative impact on the household and professional activities.

Intercostal neuralgia

Pain under ribs can be due to intercostal neuralgia. This is the banal colds and in more serious cases of: inflammation, injury, neoplastic processes. If the nerve is affected on both sides, discomfort in your page are in the surroundings of the character, right and left. Because he is the source, which is located in between the ribs, and the symptoms are of a local character:

  • Pain in this area.
  • To increase the sensitivity.
  • Numbness, tingling, "crawl".

Typically, the visible changes in the skin and the pain increases during motion in the thorax: breathing, coughing, sneezing. So the patients try to breathe shallowly and avoid unnecessary bows of the hull.


Pain under ribs on the left often occurs herpes. This is a viral disease that affects nerve ganglia and intercostal fibres. The symptoms are similar to neuralgia, but there are characteristic changes on the skin: vesicles filled with clear fluid (vesicles), which is located on the red background. Unlike the previous pathology, and flank pain with herpes will be of a permanent nature, are very pronounced and bring more suffering to patients. In the stage of treatment you may experience itching in between the ribs.

Shingles refers to infectious diseases, it is therefore necessary that appropriate treatment and care.

Diseases of the heart and the circulatory system

Diseases of the heart and the circulatory system

If it hurts on the left side under the ribs, it is necessary to exclude cardiac pathology. It is impossible to forget about such conditions as ischemic heart disease, pericarditis or myocarditis. When he felt pain behind the breastbone (in the middle) and extends to the left shoulder girdle, arm and pain in the back between the shoulder blades, to think, angina pectoris or myocardial infarction. When the lesion (necrosis) of the area of the heart muscle can disrupt the hypochondrium and upper abdomen. Then the pain becomes prolonged and can not be removed nitroglycerin. With the following features:

  • Heart palpitations.
  • Of the pressure changes.
  • Problems with the breathing.
  • Alarm.
  • Sweating.

A heart attack is the most severe pathology of the cardiovascular system, which requires emergency treatment. In the opposite case, there is a large number of acute and chronic complications, including life-threatening.

Diseases of the respiratory system

Pain on left side under ribs can occur due to respiratory pathology. We usually talk about the lower lobe pneumonia or pleurisy. In these cases is often provoked by deep breathing or coughing, and by bilateral lesions to obtain around the sign. In addition to the pain in the hypochondrium, there will be other symptoms:

  • Dry or wet cough.
  • The appearance of sputum (mucous, purulent).
  • Problems with the breathing.
  • Fever.
  • General weaknesses.

Pneumonia is characterized by a decrease in pain lying on the affected side. The objective of the review is marked dullness of percussion sound in the area of the inflammation, relieve the breathing and the appearance of pathological noise: wheezes, friction of the pleural layers.

In the area of the ribs is the pleural region of the leaf, affecting the respiratory diseases, including pneumonia.

Problems of the digestive system

Pain under the ribs is a common symptom of diseases of the gastrointestinal tract. You can affect different organs of the digestive system. In the upper left quadrant is the pancreas. Therefore, if back pain under ribs you can think about pancreatitis. During acute diseases these sensations will become stronger and will be able to in combination with other symptoms:

  • Nausea.
  • Vomiting.
  • Loss of appetite.
  • The indulgence of the chair.
  • Winds.

Palpation of the right hypochondrium will be local tenderness, and in some cases may increase body temperature. The characteristic changes in the stool: increased bowel movements, oily sheen.

On the right side may be disrupted in the case of cholecystitis. Then the pain under the ribs often radiates to the back, under the shoulder blades or in the neck. The patient feels bitter taste in mouth, nausea, soft stools. Gastric ulcer, on the contrary, most often characterized by constipation and pain, which is located in the upper middle abdomen (epigastrium) or slightly to the side in the pyloroduodenal area. Sometimes he felt pain in the back, in the region of the thoracic spine.

Diseases of the kidney and urinary tract

The kidney is in the retroperitoneum, so when there is inflammation of the pain is felt under the ribs and the lower back. This is especially noticeable in the glomerulonephritis. The urinary tract also affected due to the stones, which can damage and disrupt the dynamics. And the most frequent symptoms of this pathology are:

  • Spasms when urinating.
  • Change the color and the number of detachable urine.
  • The increase in temperature.
  • General weakness.

If impaired renal function, you may have had such symptoms as swelling of the face, and increased blood pressure. And express the changes lead to organ failure, when growing symptoms of urinary poisoning.

Kidney disease for a long time, there may be latent or little symptoms, but in the end will lead to failure.


Due to various reasons, leading to pain, especially important is the differential diagnosis of the pathology and diseases of the internal organs. In this process plays an important role not only clinical examination, but in the sense that additional methods. Include instrumental and laboratory tools, which helps the doctor to make a correct finding. If you suspect damage to the spine, the following activities:

  • The X-rays.
  • Sonography.
  • Magnetic resonance imaging.
  • CT.

And for the exclusion or confirmation of diseases of the internal organs require additional diagnostics, which will include methods appropriate for the affected system. Be sure to carry out the analysis of blood determination of total and biochemical parameters, take samples of urine. The tools include the following:

  • EKG.
  • A chest x-ray.
  • An ultrasound of the heart, abdominal organs, the kidneys.
  • A gastroscopy.

After further diagnostics the patient is necessary to review the specialized experts. And only then it becomes clear, why it hurts on the left side under the ribs. And on the basis of the results obtained designed a therapeutic program, that each disease has its own characteristics.