Why back hurts and gives pain in the ribs: on one or both sides

Back pain radiating to rib are some of the most common symptoms in a number of diseases. Difficulties in diagnosis are compounded frequent spread of pain from hypochondrium to the back and vice versa.

This phenomenon of pain radiation caused by the close anatomical and functional relationship of the organs of the upper part of the abdominal cavity and the lower part of the chest.

sore ribs from the back

The spread of pain in the adjacent areas of the body (e.g. pain) is due to the concept of a dermatome, which is a segment of skin that is innervated by one of the spinae of the spine.


Cause for pain in the back radiating to the hypochondria and vice versa can be pathological processes of the following systems and organs:

  • digestive: pancreas, liver, gallbladder, small or large intestine, stomach;
  • heart disease: heart, large vessels, etc.;
  • musculoskeletal: the muscles of the abdominal wall, back muscles, ribs, vertebral column;
  • nerve: spinal roots, nerve trunks and plexuses;
  • urinary tract – the kidneys;
  • immune system: the spleen.
  • The pathology on the left side under the ribs

    Diseases of the spleen

    The most common diseases of the spleen, which is characterized by pain in the back that is placed on the upper quadrant on the front page, listed below.

    Infarction the spleen: this error occurs when acute disorders of the circulatory system of the body, due to blockage of the lumen of the splenic artery, its branches by a blood clot or embolus. The causes of infarction of the spleen are most often systemic atherosclerosis, cardiac arrhythmia, malignant neoplasms, hematologic and autoimmune diseases, injury, liver cirrhosis etc

    Clinical manifestations vary depending on the caliber of the affected vessels. Typically, the patient complains of sharp pain in left side of back radiating to the corresponding half of the abdomen, of the chest.

    Also, the patient may interfere with weakness, fever, chills, nausea, vomiting. From time to time in the event of the closure of the segmental arteries of the complaints, which are inexistent.

    Benign or malignant tumors. May also long asymptomatic.

    Important! Pain whining, stupid character in the back or the left half of the abdomen joins after germination of the tumor capsule that covers the spleen. The patient may worry, lack of appetite, asymmetry in the abdomen, weight loss, etc ..

    Abscess the spleen. Develops as a result of infection of tissues of the spleen through the lymph or blood vessels. Characterized by dull pain in left upper quadrant radiating to the back or the shoulder girdle (may be aggravated by movement), fever with chills.

    Cysts of the spleen: parasitic (echinococcosis, alveococcosis) and nonparasitica. The latter may be congenital or acquired (trauma). For large size manifested by pain, heaviness in the left hypochondrium and protrusion of the left half of the abdomen.


    sore ribs from causing back

    Angina. In the typical case, pain is localized behind the breastbone or in the left side of the chest, provoked by physical or emotional stress, lasts from seconds to several minutes and is relieved by rest or taking nitroglycerin.

    The specific symptom is pain under the shoulder blade, in arm and jaw on the left side. Quite often, atypical angina occurs: the patient may interfere with the pain in the back and left abdomen radiating to the upper quadrant (peripheral form of angina pectoris). The pain may be crushing, squeezing, stabbing, cutting, painful.

    Myocardial infarction – a condition that can lead to death of the patient.

    Pain in myocardial infarction pain, similar to angina, but differs severe intensity and no effect of taking nitroglycerin.

    Myocardial inferior wall myocardial pain can be localized in the upper abdomen and can radiate to the back (abdominal form).

    Other forms of heart disease. Pericarditis, cardiomyopathy, myocarditis, are much less, and in exceptional cases also may be accompanied by pain in left side of back radiating to the upper quadrant.


    Pancreatitis – acute or chronic inflammation of the pancreas, the leading causes are errors in diet, and excessive alcohol intake, cholelithiasis.

    The most striking symptom of acute pancreatitis – severe pain in the upper abdomen or left upper quadrant radiating to the back and under the shoulder blade. It can be so intense that the patient brings a lot of suffering and relieved only by narcotic analgesics.

    Also, the patient care nausea, repeated vomiting, disorders of stool, fever, in severe cases, hemorrhagic rashes on the body.

    Caution! Chronic pancreatitis in remission are asymptomatic. A worsening of the symptoms of acute pancreatitis.

    Neurological disease

    Back pain radiating to the upper quadrant typical for degenerative disc disease thoracic-lumbar spine, pathology of the peripheral nervous system. Osteochondrosis pain may be constant or paroxysmal.

    Most often they are shooting, cramping, and piercing in nature and aggravated by movement. To elicit pain by pressure on the trigger points in the city of painful nerve roots near the spine.

    For neuralgia of strong burning pain, which increases when you press and change the position of the body.

    In the neurological disease, the patient may be annoyed, sensory disturbances (pins and needles, reduce some types of sensitivity) and motor deficits (problems with movement).

    What triggers discomfort on the right side

    Liver failure

    Liver failure, which is called the acute or chronic condition in which the liver cells cannot adequately support the metabolism, due to various reasons:

  • toxic damage (alcohol, drugs, fertilizers, etc);
  • diseases of the liver (cirrhosis, hepatitis, infectious disease, neoplasms, thrombosis of the portal vein);
  • diseases of the other organs of the digestive system (cholecystitis, pancreatitis, tumors);
  • diseases of other organs and systems (rheumatologic, infectious, cardiovascular).
  • Most often occur liver failure due to liver cirrhosis of different origin (viral, alcoholic). In this case, for patients characterized by a dull, unbearable pain or heaviness in the right hypochondrium radiating to the back.

    In decompensated liver failure come edema, ascites (fluid accumulation in abdominal cavity), a tendency to bleed, the smell of ammonia from the mouth, yellowness of the skin, damage to the brain (modified speech, mental confusion, loss of coordination, etc)


    sore ribs, from the back to the left

    Inflammation of the gallbladder (cholecystitis) occurs as a result of his infection. A characteristic symptom is the pain under the right rib, which may radiate to the right back.

    The intensity of the pain can vary widely: from mild to severe pain paroxysmal. Also, the patient can disturb nausea, vomiting, the taste of bile in the mouth, fever, discoloration of stool and urine (in violation of the outflow of bile).

    The cause of acute cholecystitis is usually a violation of the diet.

    Cancer of the pancreas head

    In 60-70% of patients cancer affects the head of the pancreas. The leading symptoms are pain, jaundice and weight loss.

    Help. The pain is localized in right hypochondrium or in the epigastrium and can radiate to the interscapular region or the spine.

    She usually wears dull an arching or coercive in nature (sometimes extreme), is enhanced after violation of the diet, in the supine position at night. During germination in the solar plexus, the pain intensity increases, it becomes the surroundings of the character.

    Jaundice, weight loss, pruritus, darkening of urine and lightening of stool occurs due to compression by a tumor of the bile ducts.


    Most often, gallstone disease affects middle-aged women with excess weight.

    A typical symptom of gallstone disease is acute pain in the right side of the page that appears after a heavy meal (fatty, fried, smoked).

    It can radiate to the right scapula and interscapular region.

    Along with the pain the patient has nausea, vomiting, fever, weakness.

    Acute pain is of moderate nature, or not at all.


    Inflammation of the Appendix is the most common emergency surgical pathology. Usually it is the pain of appendicitis is localized in the lower part of the abdomen.

    However, with the high location of the Appendix occurs in the right hypochondrium extending into the right half of the back and can simulate the attack of cholecystitis. Pain in this case are different:

      pain, an arching, stitching, stupid, etc ..

    As a rule, the patient is also concerned about the nausea, occasional vomiting, moderate fever.

    The causes for the mutual pain on both sides


    This is a degenerative disease of the spine, which are accompanied by a reduction in the thickness of the intervertebral disks, excessive overgrowth of bone and the displacement of the vertebrae.

    These factors lead to pinching of spinal nerves, resulting pain syndrome.

    Important! The pain usually has a wavelike nature, increases by the movement in the forced position. This is often accompanied by numbness, tingling, burning sensation in the affected area.

    Diseases of the stomach

    Regularly the dull pain in this case is usually localized in the epigastrium but may radiate to the back on both sides, or interscapular region with involvement of the posterior wall of the stomach.

    This can occur immediately or hours after eating (ulcer) or interfere with the patient most of the time (gastric cancer).

    Other warning signs are:

      nausea, heartburn, loss of appetite, weight reduction, etc ..
    sore ribs from behind with two sides

    The most frequent diseases of the stomach, along with pain that extends to the back include:- stomach ulcers;- gastritis;- gastric cancer.

    Intestinal pathology

    Usually pain in the abdomen radiating to the back is characteristic for:

      duodenal ulcers, Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis, neoplastic lesions, etc ..

    Pain in diseases of the colon or the small intestine, associated with food intake.

    Usually there is pain in nature and rarely reaches a high intensity.

    Can be kept in different parts of the abdomen and to give in the corresponding part of the back.

    The complexity of diagnostics of mutual pain

    The diagnosis of pain without clear localization or spread to other parts of the body represents a difficult clinical problem. This is due to the extensive functional relationships of adjacent organs.

    The most important value for differential diagnosis has a character of pain (sharp, dull, aching, burning), its persistence, causes and time of occurrence. These features allow to suspect a specific pathology and hold up further consideration.

    The right approach to treatment and methods

    Mutual pain must be the reason for the consultation with the doctor. Treatment in the case of mutual pain must be carried out after the establishment of the final diagnosis by means of laboratory and instrumental methods of diagnosis.

    Please, note! In some cases, an effective conservative treatment (low back pain, gastritis, gastric ulcer), while others may require surgery (malignant neoplasm, cholelithiasis, appendicitis).

    What doctor to address

    Primary diagnosis and determine the cause of the pain syndrome involved the therapist. He can refer the patient to an appropriate specialist for advice or treatment after the establishment of the final diagnosis.

    In pathology of the digestive system therapy performed gastroenterologist, osteochondrosis neuralgia and the neurologist, in cancer – the oncologist. If necessary (appendicitis, cholecystitis) aid by the surgeon.


    Pain in the back extending into the quadrant (or vice versa), there is a wide clinical variety and can meet the extensive list of diseases of the gastrointestinal tract, the heart and the circulatory system, the nervous system. Knowledge of their properties allows you to suspect a specific pathology, for the implementation of the quality of diagnostic search and to determine the appropriate treatment.