Digestive Disorders / Gastroenterology Forum
This expert forum is not accepting new questions. Please post your question in one of our medical support communities.
Avatar universal

Pain in the upper right side - under rib cage

I have been having pain off and on for the past six months in my right upper side.  It is not severe and sometimes it feels like it almost goes away, almost.

My doctor thought it could be related to bout I had with dysentery while in India. Or something to do with my colon. All my blood work (liver, kidneys, CBC, WBC, BUN) are normal.  My abdominal ultrasound (liver, pancreas, kidneys and gallbladder) was normal too. I am Hep A/B negetive and have had twinrix vaccinations prior to going to India.  I have an appt tomorrow to follow up on doing more tests.

My sister did have a serious gallbladder attack and had an emergency removal of her gallbladder some years back.

I am at a loss of what this could be.  My colon, gallbladder, hernia, ulcer, appenddix????????  Has anyone ever had similar symptoms?

Thanks, Tina
15 Responses
Avatar universal
Hi, I'm not a doctor or a medical student but my grandmother has been having the same problems. Pain in the upper right side of the abdomen, pain following meals, nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, etc. She was adimitted into the hospital today and the doctor told her it was GALLSTONES. You can get information on the web by just typing that in. Hope this information helps. =)

Avatar universal
But one thing is I don't have any nausea, vomiting, weightloss problems.  Just the constant ache.  Sometimes very minor and other times more severe.  But nothing that has me writhing in pain or anything.  I can work with it.
Avatar universal
Have you gained weight recently?
Avatar universal
I had pain in my right side for years and years.  Several different doctors sent me to have my gallbladder checked and it was clear.  My blood tests always came back "normal" until I gained too much weight and finally had moderately high cholesterol and only slightly elevated liver enzymes.  Fatty infiltration of the liver is a very slowly progressing problem.  You can have it for a long time with only mild or vague symptoms.  The doctors are doing more research on it at this very moment.
Avatar universal
First let me say a big thank you to all the people on this board!  

Dear Rosnox:  I actually lost 35 pounds when I went overseas.  I was almost 190 and came back 155.

I saw my doctor today and she looked again at my blood work and ultrasound and really poked around the area that is bothering me.  She thinks I have a "floating rib" because where I go "ouch!" is on the bottom rib and I don't have any other symptoms (like nausea, vomiting, diarhhea or constipation, strange stools, etc).

I questioned her about Hep C and she said that with my background and test results I was a very low risk candidate.  But she relented (after I wouldn't shut up) and wrote up a Hep C test. I really like my doctor because she is flexible on having tests being done - even if she thinks they may not be totally needed.

As for my gallbladder, she said it looked fine.
Avatar universal
I lived overseas for 5 years and had stomach problems the entire time I was there.  I always wanted to blame the water.
Avatar universal
I have that same pain.  I stopped eating bacon and it helped.  I notice that my whole stomach area feels funny after I eat beef too.  I wish I knew what was wrong.  I have an appointment for an ultrasound of the spleen area.  Maybe it might shed some light.
Avatar universal
I too have had pain up under my right rib cage.  (I had my gall bladder removed 12 years ago, which by the way they said wasn't my problem.  No test showed that my gallbladder was bad.  But when they went in there after it, the surgeon told me it was one of the sickest gallbladders he had ever seen).  Anyway, my current pain is caused by a bile duct stricture, confirmed by an ERCP two weeks ago.
Avatar universal
Hi everyone:

I just want to thank all of you for responding.  After having normal liver, kidney, WBC, RBC, BUN tests and a normal ultrasound, I saw my doctor again.  She did a lot of physical probing in the area along with questions/answers.  She seems to think it is a "slipped rib syndrome" where your last rib loosens from the cartilage and rubs it.  My "ouches" at her poking at my rib is what convinced her.  Along with the fact the pain gets better with activity.  However, I did insist on a Hep C test anyway.

BUT....now I am facing new dilemma.  I have been having microscopic blood in my urine since last year (after a really bad, prolonged kidney infection).  I did see a urologist and get tests (cancer cells tests I am not sure they did)/ultrasound done...All normal.  But now my pcp is concerned that I still have it and I have to get this followed up.

Avatar universal
I've been having stomach pain in my lower right abdomen for five months now and a few days ago the pain spread to exactly the area you mentioned under the right side of the rib cage.  It's extremely tender to the touch and seems to be getting worse as the days pass.  Like you, I have trouble sleeping because of it and also like you, I've been through about every test imaginable and the doctors keep telling me everything is normal.  My gastroenterologist is scheduling me for a colonoscopy to check for Crohn's Disease and Colitis. A colonoscopy may find inflammations that won't show up in CAT scans barium X-rays.  You may want to see if you can get a colonoscopy.
Avatar universal
I think I'm in your same boat ...so can you help me........
I had my gall bladder remove last 4th of  July. I had a lamparoscopic and everything went really good, I had a fast recovery and I was back to work after 1 weak. I always have an excellent health until this last year. After the surgery I was feeling nauseous and not to perfect but I was thinking it was normal. but I still feeling nauseous and having a pain in my right side under my ribs and in my back, I visit my doctor and she send me to a Gastrenterologist   thinking I had stones in the common bile duct, the Gastrenterologist did an endoscopy thinking that I had an ulcer.  everything was ok... and she said that can not be stons..can she know that with just an endoscopy???.....for few weeks I thought I was getting crazy how can I imagine this pain, so I decide to go to other doctor . He make me an ultrasound. the day before the Ultrasound I talk with a friend and she said that not always a stone in the common bile duct will show in an ultrasound or endoscopy that I have to get an ERCP .....is that true??? ... the ultrasound doesn't show stones and all my blood tests are perfect the doctor said that is gastritys (but I just have a endoscopy and everything was normal)..... I am lost I need help and I don't know were to turn ..... I still having pain in my right side and in my back, feeling nauseous and vomiting few times.... some days I fell beter and with a dull pain...it can be a stone???
Avatar universal
not a doctor here or even a health professional but it sounds to me that you have fatty infiltration of the liver.  It can be caused by excessive alcohol intake, obesity, diabetes or LOSING a lot of weight quickly,,,u said u lost 35 lbs pretty quick,,,ask doc for an ultrasound to rule out fatty infiltration of the liver,,,,,mine is alcohol induced,,have been in A.A. for about a week now and the pain has diminished a wee bit,,,,but for a while there it was absolutely HORRENDOUS,,i actually had to sleep in my recliner in the living room some nights,,,EXTREMELY tender right under the right ribcage, front to back but mostly in the middle,,,no naseua or vomiting at all. hope this helps,,,,good luck!!
Avatar universal
I would like to know what treatment was given to you for the floating rib problem. I have had this same pain on and off for 7 years - it is right under the rib, and is aggravated by the waistbands of pants and sitting for extended periods of time, which happens at work. It feels better when I press in on the rib and muscles in that area, but I was lead to believe it would just have to heal on its own, that the floating rib was poking through the muscle tissue, hence the pain. Is there anything formalized to help?
Avatar universal
A related discussion, pain in the upper part of my rib cage was started.
Avatar universal
A related discussion, Right side pain was started.
Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
Learn which OTC medications can help relieve your digestive troubles.
Is a gluten-free diet right for you?
Discover common causes of and remedies for heartburn.
This common yet mysterious bowel condition plagues millions of Americans
Don't get burned again. Banish nighttime heartburn with these quick tips
Get answers to your top questions about this pervasive digestive problem