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Emi Hyder
28 Apr 2018 . 1 min read

9 Possible Reasons For Pain In Lower Right Abdomen In Women


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Have you ever experienced pain in your tummy? Now you may wonder what kind of a weird question this is.

Of course, you have. Who hasn't?

Tummy pain or abdominal pain is one of the most common types of pain that people experience in their day to day lives. Usually, it goes as it comes and is relieved by rest or medication. No one really notices how big of a deal abdominal pain can become until one day, they actually experience a sharp-shooting or severely aching pain in their abdomen.

Then and there, abdominal pain becomes no longer just a mere excuse to take an off from work or college, but it turns into something so severe that it needs medical attention.

Difference Between Stomach Ache & Abdominal Pain

Yes, there is a difference, and it's a big one.

The abdomen is the area between your chest and pelvis, and as a whole, it’s a home to many organs like liver, pancreas, spleen, appendix, intestines etc. Just like these organs, the stomach is also an organ located in your abdomen.

The stomach is located in the upper left part of your abdomen. It is an organ that participates in the process of digestion by liquefying and churning the food. Pain, arising only in the stomach is known as a stomach ache. However, pain in abdomen is a very broad term.

Pain in the abdomen isn't something which is just limited to stomach ache, but it also indicates towards pain in any of the organs located in the abdomen as a whole. Therefore, stomach ache and abdominal pain should not be treated alike.

What Causes Abdominal Pain?

Abdominal pain can be caused due to a variety of reasons - inflammation, infection, obstruction, altered bowel movements and menstruation are some common causes of abdominal pain.

Abdominal pain can be achy, dull, crampy, colicky, intermittent or sharp. No matter how mild, severe or intense that abdominal pain is, don't ignore it. Informing your doctor is a necessary and important step in order to avoid it from progressing into a more serious complication.

Lower Right Abdominal Pain In Women

Pain, specifically on the lower right side of the abdomen, can indicate towards a series of problems in females. These issues can be minor or major depending on what is causing the pain. The lower right part of the abdomen is home to many organs like -

  • Cecum.
  • Appendix
  • Ascending Colon
  • Right Ovary
  • Right Fallopian tube
  • Right ureter

Development of inflammation, obstruction, infection etc in any of these organs can contribute towards the build-up of discomfort and pain in the lower right side of the abdomen.

9 Common Causes Of Lower Right Abdominal Pain In Women

Less Serious Causes

#1. Menstrual Cramps

Periods don't scare you but cramps do. No one likes period pain. There is absolutely nothing to like about it. It makes you dull, sad and cranky. Sometimes, it even makes you cry.

You bundle up into a sad ball of pain with hot pads and pillows around you hoping that it will go away. And when it finally does, it is the best feeling, isn't it? Menstrual pain usually doesn't require any serious medical attention. A little bit of heat around the lower abdomen, massage, rest and healthy food take care of it.

Menstrual pain may take a few hours or a few days to completely go away. However, if the pain becomes intolerable and very severe, informing your doctor about it is very important so that your doctor can help you feel better.

#2.Indigestion & Intestinal Gas

Turns out that your decision of having that extra serving of your favourite food didn't work out well for you. After that much-enjoyed food adventure, you're here, holding your stomach praying for the pain to go away. Don't worry, it will.

Pain caused due to indigestion usually goes away in a few hours or a day and is relieved by over the counter medications. If food isn't digested properly, there can be a build-up of gas in the intestines.This can cause bloating, discomfort and pain.

Pain due to gas usually subsides in a few hours if you move around and walk a little to release the extra gas out of your system. However, if you are experiencing nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea and severe pain along with a lot of abdominal discomforts, you should meet your doctor immediately to ensure that your pain is taken care of properly.

More Serious Causes

#3. Ovarian Cyst

Sac-like fluid-filled or solid formations called cysts can develop on the ovaries. They can cause irregularities in the menstrual cycle. They may cause heavy or light periods and can also cause bloating.

If the ovarian cysts are small, they are usually harmless. However, if they get bigger they can also cause a dull aching pain in the abdomen along with other symptoms like:

  • Sharp pain in lower abdomen
  • Pain during sex
  • Irregular menstruation
  • Increase in urination
  • Swelling of the abdomen
  • Bloating

Most ovarian cysts do not cause infertility, however, if they become infected due to pelvic inflammation, they can scar the fallopian tube and cause infertility. See your doctor right away if you are experiencing the symptoms mentioned above.

#4. Ovarian Torsion

It is the twisting or rotation of ovary. In ovarian torsion, the blood supply in ovarian artery/vein is occluded and blood flow is compromised due to the twisting of ovary around its ligamentous support. As a result, the blood flow to the fallopian tube and the ovary is reduced. This can even lead to necrosis and death of tissue.

Women can experience crampy or dull pain in their abdomen for days to weeks until a sudden sharp pain arises because of the twisting and untwisting of the ovary. Such a pain should immediately be reported to the doctor so that a proper treatment can be provided.

#5. Endometriosis

Endometriosis is a condition where the tissue which lines the uterus grows outside the uterus. It can cause:

  • Pain in lower abdomen
  • Menstrual irregularities
  • Pain during sex
  • Abnormally heavy or light periods
  • Pain during bowel movements
  • Rectal pain
  • Nausea and constipation

Endometriosis also contributes towards infertility.

#6. Pelvic Inflammatory Disease

PID is caused due to the spread of infection in the organs of the female reproductive system. Uterus, ovaries, fallopian tubes and cervix are affected. The pelvic inflammatory disease is usually caused due to sexually transmitted infections like chlamydia and gonorrhoea.

Symptoms of PID are often left unnoticed in the early stages, however as the infection spreads, the following symptoms can be seen -

  • Heavy unpleasant discharge from the vagina
  • Burning pain while urination
  • Fever and chills
  • Pain in lower abdomen near the pelvis
  • Pain during sex
  • Bleeding between periods

PID can cause serious problems if left untreated. The pelvic inflammatory disease can cause persistent pain in your lower abdomen. It can even lead to infertility. Treating a sexually transmitted infection is very important in order to reduce the chances of developing PID. Meet your doctor right away if you are experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned above

#7. Ectopic Pregnancy

An ectopic pregnancy occurs when the embryo implants itself outside the uterus, usually in the fallopian tube. It happens within the first few weeks of the pregnancy. Ectopic pregnancy may lead to fallopian tube rupture, causing intense pain in the lower abdomen.

First symptoms are usually light vaginal bleeding and pelvic pain. Other symptoms are:

  • Sharp abdominal pain
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Abdominal cramps
  • Weakness and dizziness

Since the embryo cannot survive outside the uterus, usually medication is given or surgery is advised to rectify the problem. Inform your doctor right away if you experience bleeding and pain during pregnancy.

#8. Miscarriage

Losing a pregnancy can be highly emotional and a very traumatizing experience for a woman. Loss of pregnancy before the 20th week is known as miscarriage or spontaneous abortion. Almost 80% of all miscarriages occur in the first few months of pregnancy.

Symptoms of a miscarriage include -

  • Pain in lower part of the abdomen
  • Heavy bleeding
  • Back pain
  • Severe cramps
  • Fever

Miscarriages can occur due to infections, trauma, uterine problems and hormonal issues in pregnant women. If you are experiencing bleeding with fever, chills and severe pain during your pregnancy, contact your doctor right away.

#9. Urinary Tract Infection

Urinary tract infections, or UTIs, are also one of the most common causes of lower abdominal pain in women. It is the infection of the urinary system involving the kidneys, bladder and the urethra. Fever, lower abdominal pain, blood in urine, burning urination and an increase in the frequency of micturition is commonly seen in UTI.

Other symptoms are -

  • Pain in groin and pelvis
  • Foul smelling urine
  • Cloudy urine
  • Dark urine
  • Blood in urine
  • Cramping
  • Vaginal irritation and itching

Call or visit your doctor immediately if you are experiencing the symptoms listed above. UTI requires proper medical care and attention for the pain to be managed and the infection to be treated properly with the use of antibiotics.

When To See A Doctor?

Abdominal pain in the lower right side may or may not be a cause of concern depending upon the symptoms associated with it. Usually lower right abdominal pain is relieved with basic home care like taking rest, sleeping, relaxing, massaging and using a heating pad.

At times, this pain may also require the use of some over the counter medications to reduce and manage the symptoms. However, sudden sharp and persistent pain or pain that is associated with bleeding, chills or fever can indicate towards more serious causes that require proper medical attention.

Symptoms That Require Immediate Medical Attention

If your abdomen is sensitive to touch, visit your doctor immediately or call for medical help. Other symptoms that require medical intervention are -

  1. Pain in the abdomen with high fever (over 102°F).
  2. Severe concentrated pain in the right lower part of the abdomen.
  3. Bleeding during pregnancy
  4. Bloody urine
  5. Blood in stool
  6. Uncontrollable vomiting
  7. Blood in vomiting
  8. Rectal bleeding

What Can I Do?

If you are experiencing pain, no matter how mild, severe or persistent it is, never ignore it. Don't wait for the pain to subside or go on its own. Always inform your doctor if you feel that something isn't right or normal. Seek help if you are in immense pain and discomfort.

  • Call/ visit your doctor and share your symptoms in detail.
  • Request for an ambulance if you cannot visit the hospital.
  • Remain calm and try to breathe.
  • Wait for the help to reach you.

Make it a point to get routine checkups done in order to avoid any health related issues or complications. Maintain a healthy lifestyle. Eat a balanced diet and perform physical activities. Try to avoid stress as much as possible.

Things To Remember

Pain demands attention. It is an indication that something isn't right with your body and this message from your body should never be ignored or taken lightly.

Pain in the lower right side of the abdomen can turn out to be a more complicated or severe problem than you can imagine. If are ignoring the frequent, but light and bearable pain that is persistent and currently subsiding on its own, then you are inviting bigger problems.

Visit the doctor or seek medical attention immediately if you feel uneasy because of your abdominal pain. It's better to be safe than sorry.


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Emi Hyder

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