What Causes Pain Under Right Rib Cage! (15 Important Causes)

Pain Under Right Rib Cage

What causes pain under right rib cage? Rib cage pain is a very common health condition that can occur due to multiple factors. It can be a minor or severe health problem. The cause of rib cage pain varies from fracture to lung cancer. In this article, we will discuss the possible causes of pain on the right side of the rib cage.

The rib cage is a vital part of our body because it protects the cardiovascular system and other vital organs of our body. The pain under the rib cage may change from minor discomfort to severe pain. It is essential to know what causes you pain because it will give you relief and help you to take proper medication.

The rib cage consists of 12 horizontal bones, and their primary goal is to protect the heart and lungs. Mostly rib cage pain occurs because of injury or because of some outdoor sports.

In that case, taking plenty of rest is the perfect way to treat rib cage pain. But if you have severe pain and pain for a long time then you need immediate medical attention.

There are many health diseases and specific physical disorders that may cause pain under the right rib cage especially.

What Are The Causes Of Pain Under Right Rib Cage?

The right rib cage protects several vital organs such as the intestine, pancreas, kidneys, gallbladder, liver, and spleen.  We can say it protect all abdomen area so the first symptom of pain can be a small injury or inflammation of any organ. Below we try to figure out 15 significant causes of pain under the right rib cage.

1. Injury

It is one of the most common and major reasons behind pain in the right rib cage. Sometimes you don’t even know that you have injured your ribs. This pain can occur because of fractured ribs or broken ribs or bruised ribs.

This pain can be minor or severe which depends on the seriousness of the injury. Serious rib cage injury can damage the lung or kidneys. So if you have severe pain or pain for a long time visit your doctor as soon as possible.

2. Appendicitis

Appendicitis causes dull pain under the right rib cage. It happened because of an inflamed appendix. But if you feel severe pain then you need immediate medical attention. Inflamed appendicitis can cause a serious problem, and it might result in the death of a person.

This pain starts from your belly button and intensifies with time. Along with pain, you may feel symptoms like nausea, diarrhoea, fever, continuous vomiting, abdominal swelling, etc.

3. Collapsed Lung

In medical terms, the collapsed lung is also known as pneumothorax. It happened when your air filled the wall of the chest cavity and the lungs. There are many reasons for lung collapse but smoking is one of the primary reasons for lung collapse or cancer. This pain feels like someone stabbing your right rib cage area or chest area every time you breathe.

4. Costochondritis

Costochondritis causes inflammation in the rib cage, and this pain mainly ranges from mild to severe. Due to this illness, your chest will feel tender to touch or unbearable chest pain. This pain can go away within a few weeks, but sometimes this pain requires medical attention. Symptoms of costochondritis are chest pain in the upper and middle right rib cage.

5. Pancreatitis

The infected and inflamed pancreas can cause severe pain in the left rib cage, and for a woman, it can cause pain under the right breast. The infection of the pancreas occurs because of excessive alcohol or gallstones.

We recommend you visit your doctor to get proper medical treatment for pancreas pain. Once you get rid of the pancreas infection, you should change your lifestyle and stop drinking alcohol, and quit smoking to avoid this health issue in the future.

6. Pleurisy

Another cause for the right rib cage is pleurisy which is also known as pleuritis in medical science. This affects the lining of the lungs and chest due to inflammation of tissue layers in the lungs.

Along with the pain in the chest, you can also feel breathing problems and tenderness. If this pain doesn’t get treated soon, it may spread to the shoulder and back.

7. Choledocholithiasis

This problem causes pain under the right rib cage due to the formation of stones in the bile duct. Usually, stones occur in the gallbladder but sometimes stones can develop in duct bile, and this can be more painful.

Most people don’t seem aware of this health condition, or they get to know it after 3-4 months. Sometimes it can take years to see that you have stones in duct bile. If you have symptoms of jaundice and fever, you can feel pain in your right rib cage.

8. Acid Reflux

Acid reflux can be another reason for pain in both the left rib cage and the right rib cage. It occurs when acid in your stomach reaches the oesophagus and is also known as heartburn. Common symptoms of acid reflux are inflammation or chest pain. Chest pain due to acid reflux is equally intense as a heart attack.

9. Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)

According to the World Journal of Gastroenterology, inflammatory bowel disease can damage the lungs and cause pain in the right and left rib cages. Ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease are two common inflammatory diseases that cause pain in the colon and rectum. The pain in the colon and rectum can lead to chest pain or pain in the rib cage.

10. Gallstone

One of the major reasons for pain under the right rib cage is gallstones.  Stones form in the gallbladder due to the high amount of cholesterol, bilirubin, or because of fewer bile salts. Small stones in the gallbladder block the bile duct, and causes severe pain in the rib cage. This pain in the ribs lasts for 4-5 hours.

11. Kidney Stones

Kidney stones can also cause sharp pain under the right rib cage. Stones can develop in the kidney due to external particles present in urine. Most of the time small stones passed through urine, but large stones can block the passage and cause severe pain. Kidney stones can also cause your urinary tract infection (UTI) due to blockage of urine passage. You can use natural remedies to get rid of kidney stones.

12. Liver Infection

The liver problem can also cause pain in your right ribs. Liver problems can occur because of many reasons. Sometimes it happens due to water inflammation. Hepatitis is another reason for liver infection which may lead to rib pain. Liver infection can be controlled by home remedies and if you have severe pain then consult with your doctor for a proper diagnosis.

13. Alcohol

Excessive intake of alcohol may cause a liver problem which again leads to rib pain. If you notice any pain because of excessive drinking then stop drinking to avoid rib pain. You can use the home remedy to get rid of a hangover and help to work the liver properly.

14. Tuberculosis

Tuberculosis is a severe bacterial infection that can cause pain in the right ribs. It can affect your lungs and liver. It is a contagious problem that spread to the spine and brain.

15. Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia

Leukaemia is a type of cancer that starts from the blood-forming tissue. CML can be very dangerous and may lead affected a person to death. It can cause pain in the right ribs.

How To Prevent pain under right rib cage?

  • Do not stress your body because it can change your body condition and may feel pain in your ribs.
  • If you feel pain in your rib cages avoids physical activity like gym, sports, etc.
  • During pregnancy, please do light exercise to avoid rib cage pain.
  • Eat a healthy diet to avoid forming stones in your body.


Rib cage pain is very normal, but it can lead you to a serious health condition. Sometimes the pain in the ribs gets cured itself. But if you have had pain for a long time please visit your doctor and get proper treatment.

It is very important to know the causes of rib cage pain to diagnose it properly. The above article will help you understand the causes of pain in the right rib cage. Please leave your feedback in the comment box.

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