Right lower abdominal pain

Why you experience pain in the lower right stomach when sitting down?


right stomach painThere are various factors that contribute to pain in the lower right stomach. Some factors that lead to the pain is due to mild causes whereas there are hidden emergency factors that need immediate management to prevent complications and loss of life.

The abdomen, simply known as the stomach, is the area of your body extending from beneath the chest to just above your pelvis. The lower right abdominal area is the area below the belly button and towards the lower right of your body, which is the house of the right lower lobe of right kidney, right ureter, cecum, appendix, a section of ascending colon, right spermatic cord, and part of the female reproductive organs (right ovary, right fallopian tube, part of the uterus).

right lower side stomach acheA right lower side stomach ache can be a result of any irritation or infection to the organs located in this area. However, most lower abdominal pain subsides on its own without requiring any intervention. There are a number of other causes too for developing lower right abdominal pain that can cause a threat to the individual if timely action not taken. If the pain is not getting subsided and its intensity increases you need to consult a physician.

What are the various causes for right lower abdominal pain while sitting?

What are the various causes for right lower abdominal pain while sitting


Now let’s discuss the above-mentioned causes of right lower abdominal pain in detail….

Mild and less severe causes of right lower side stomach pain

These causes would be relieved without much intervention as most of them are caused by improper food intake which will be resolved on its own. You need to follow dietary modification and lifestyle changes to experience comfort and relief of lower right abdominal pain.


When you have a lower right abdominal pain after a meal and feeling of fullness or belching and a nauseated feeling then you can suspect an indigestion of food, there are also chances for experiencing heartburn.


  • Eating too much food
  • Eating too much non-vegetarian and spicy food items
  • Ingestion of certain fruits and vegetables that are difficult to digest
  • Eating too many chocolates and sweets
  • Consuming too much alcohol, caffeinated drinks, etc.
  • Anxiety and stress
  • Some medications too cause indigestion

Intestinal gas

The gas formed and locked in the large intestine or bowels leads to the right lower abdominal pain and discomfort along with gurgling sensation in the abdomen, often audible due to movements of bowel with gas locked within it.


  • Inadequate digestion of carbohydrates causes their fermentation in the gastrointestinal tract and thus gas is formed which inturn causes lower abdominal pain.
  • If the protein intake is too much in the diet, they do not get digested completely and thus decompose to form a gas.
  • Indigestion of food after a meal
  • Poor function of bowel in elderly people that can cause gas or flatulence
  • Constipation too locks gas in the bowel leading to lower stomach pain


A condition characterized by the passage of hard and dry stools once in 3 or more days it is associated with clinical features such as pain in the lower stomach region with restlessness, nausea, giddiness, flatulence, and so on.



Traumatic Injury

An accidental trauma caused to the right lower side abdomen leads to intense pain with vomiting, abdominal distention, shock.


  • Blunt trauma to the lower right abdomen
  • Penetrating injury to the lower right abdomen with knife or bullet

Muscle strain and spasm

Muscle strain is the unexpected tearing of abdominal muscle whereas muscle spasm is due to spasmodic contraction of the smooth muscle of bowel both can occur when any strenuous workout or lifting of heavy objects are been performed. These both create sharp spontaneous pain in the lower abdominal area.

Gastritis and Gastroenteritis

Gastritis is a condition characterized by an inflammation of the lining of the stomach resulting in nausea, vomiting, pain in the upper part of the stomach sometimes rating to lower areas of the abdomen.


  • Excessive intake of alcohol, spicy food
  • Intake of uncooked meat, food, and fruit
  • Food poisoning
  • Viral infection
  • Irregular food habits

Gastroenteritis is a condition caused by virus, bacteria or parasites which leads to inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract that results in lower right abdominal pain along with the passage of frequent liquid stools, vomiting, fever, dehydration. It can be acute and chronic.


  • consumption of alcohol and spicy food
  • Intake of improperly cooked meat, fish, and fruits
  • Poisoning

Which are the severe causes requiring immediate medical management?


The appendix is a vestigial organ, which is a finger like projection that extends from the colon and located at the right lower abdomen. Inflammation of the appendix is known as appendicitis and is a condition that requires immediate medical attention. If left untreated the appendix can burst and infection will spread and this becomes a life-threatening situation that alerts a medical emergency. An individual with severe right-side lower abdomen pain will make the medical team suspect appendicitis.


  • A block in the lining of the appendix caused by any sort of obstruction can result in multiplication of bacteria and thus results in swelling and pus formation leaving the appendix inflamed.

Surgical removal of the appendix (appendectomy) is the treatment of choice in most persons. If the obstruction has just started and you consulted the doctor in the initial stage where pus is not too much and swelling is mild then medical management with antibiotics or drainage of pus can cure your appendicitis. If the appendix bursts then, it’s an emergency and life-threatening condition where an emergency appendectomy is the treatment of choice.

Renal stones

Hard deposits of mineral and salts formed inside kidneys are renal stones. It is caused due to high protein intake in the diet, avoiding water intake, obesity, intake of medications for long periods and so on.

Clinical features

  • Pain in the right lower abdomen radiating to back
  • Fever
  • Pain while urinating and burning sensation
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Urine color changes to pink, red with a foul smell

If the renal stone is formed in the right kidneys, right ureter then there will be intense pain in the right lower abdominal region while doing various activities like sitting. Small stones would pass along with urine if the individual drinks lots and lots of water. If the size of stone increases and the severity of pain increases and recurrent urinary tract infections occur surgery and removal of stone should be done.

Renal infection

A type of urinary tract infection that begins at the urethra (the tube that carries urine) or urinary bladder (a pouch that stores urine before voiding) and can spread upwards along the ureters to the kidneys. In some unusual situations, bacteria causing infection in another part of the body can travel through the bloodstream and can cause infection of the kidneys. It is a rare situation but can happen at times.

Clinical features

  • Fever with chills
  • Pain in the lower right abdomen while sitting
  • Burning sensation when passing urine

Antibiotics are the treatment of choice for renal infection. If the condition is worsening an intravenous antibiotic therapy is recommended by the physician. As it is a life-threatening situation in some cases if any obstruction present anywhere in the urinary system surgical management may be needed to get it corrected and save the life.


Diverticula are small bulged pouches found in the lining of the lower part of the large intestine mainly the colon. When these pouches get inflamed and infected it leads to the condition called diverticulitis.

Clinical features

  • Fever
  • Pain in the left lower abdomen is commonly seen but in some people, pain is more severe in the right lower abdomen area.

People with mild diverticulitis can be treated with rest, antibiotics, and change in dietary pattern, severe diverticulitis requires surgical management.

Inflammatory bowel disease

This is a disease that includes a group of chronic disorders due to inflammation of the digestive tract.

Inflammatory bowel disease

Both these disorders cause fever, pain in the lower right stomach region along with discomfort. As this is not a serious condition, but in some people it becomes fatal and life-threatening if not managed properly. Antibiotics along with dietary modification and medications to relieve symptoms are prescribed by the physician. If severe pain persists and the condition cannot be managed with medicines surgery is the option to prevent complications and relieve discomfort.

Irritable bowel syndrome

This is a type of disorder where a group of symptoms related to the gastrointestinal system is seen in the person. The individual suffers from abdominal pain in the right lower portion with disturbed bowel movements. Diarrhea and constipation may occur alternatively.

Clinical features

  • Pain in the lower stomach region sometimes get worst after meals and sometimes get relieved after a bowel movement
  • Diarrhoea and constipation alternatively may occur
  • Indigestion and gas formation

As the exact cause of the IBS still remain unknown the person suffering from IBS need to change their dietary pattern and life style changes are mandatory with the consultation of a physician or therapist.


A hernia is a bulge or protrusion of a tissue or organ through the lining of the muscle. The most commonly seen hernia is the abdominal hernias. A hernia is felt like a small lump near your belly or groin. If you press it or lie down in a prone position it will go inside. It would be painful when you lift something while coughing, sitting, etc.

Clinical features

  • Pain in the lower abdominal region
  • A lump or mass felt which is not felt when lying down
  • Pain intensified when lifting something, sitting, and so on

A surgeon either repairs the hernia or does a surgery based on the type of hernia. It is always important that you seek immediate medical advice with regard to hernia. As it cannot be self repaired, instead of leading to complication and going for emergency surgery it is always advisable to act promptly during the early stage of hernia.

Do you wonder what are the gender-specific causes?

Male-specific causes

Inguinal hernia

Inguinal canal is the passageway for the blood vessels and spermatic cord towards the testicles in males. The fatty tissue or part of the intestine protrudes through the inguinal canal into the groin.

Clinical features

  • A bulge on any side of the lower abdominal region
  • Pain on the right lower abdomen if the lump on the right side
  • Pain intensifies while lifting something, sitting and so on

A surgical repair is recommended as early as possible based upon the severity of the protrusion. A self-repair is not possible so early surgical correction prevents complications and emergency life-threatening situations.

Testicular torsion

In males the testis rest inside the scrotum. The blood supply to the testis is provided by the spermatic cord. In the case of testicular torsion, the spermatic cord gets twisted and thus the blood supply to the testis is cut off. The cause of testicular torsion may be congenital i.e in some individuals the testis moves very rapidly from birth thus, leading to twisting of the spermatic cord and resulting in torsion. Accidents and sports injuries can also lead to testicular torsion.

Clinical features

  • Pain and swelling of the scrotal sac
  • Pain in the lower abdomen
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Blood in semen

An immediate surgical management is required to avoid emergencies and complications. If testicular torsion is not corrected within 6 hours the blood supply to the testis will be cut off and testicular tissue will die requiring its removal.

Female-specific causes

What are the Obstetrical and gynecological factors leading to the right side lower stomach pain?

Minor causes

Menstrual pain

A throbbing, cramping pain is experienced by most women in their lower abdomen during their menstrual cycle. The pain may be severe during the first two days of each cycle along with discomfort like backache, headache, a nauseated feeling, and so on.
Taking adequate rest along with applying hot applications can relieve pain and provide discomfort. The pain will be relieved as the cycle ends without any management itself. If the pain is severe and unbearable consult a gynecologist and seek appropriate management.

Ovulation pain

Ovulation occurs in most females of the reproductive age group and pain is noticed among a few of them. The ovum is released from alternative ovaries each month, during the time of the release of egg or ovum a mild twitching pain to severe pain is developed in the lower abdomen if ovum released is from the right ovary pain will be in the right lower abdomen. Pain lasts from minutes to some hours. It would be subsiding on its own without any treatment. However, most women don’t experience this pain.

What’re the gynecological factors causing pain in the lower abdomen?

Major causes

Pelvic -inflammatory –disease (PID)

Infection of the female reproductive organs causes Pelvic Inflammatory Disease. Infection can occur in the fallopian tube, ovaries or any part of the uterus. It causes fever, severe lower right abdominal pain if the organs of the right side are affected( right ovary, right fallopian tube, right side of uterus), pain during sexual intercourse, painful frequent urination and so on.

Consulting a physician and taking appropriate medications will lead to recovery. If not treated in the initial phase the infection will spread to your nearby tissues and it can further lead to abscess formation with pus-filled pockets. In some cases, it would be a threat to the reproductive organ and thus need its removal.


The endometrium is the layer present inside the lining of the female uterus. When a layer of endometrium-like tissue grows outside your uterus the condition is called endometriosis. The tissue growth can be seen in your ovaries, bowel, and pelvic tissue lining. It causes severe lower right abdominal pain along with discomfort, excessive menstrual pain, painful sexual intercourse, and so on.

Endometriosis as such has no cure, but symptoms can be managed effectively and reduce discomfort, pain, and irritation. Surgical management is also a preferred option when consulted with a gynecologist.

Ovarian cyst

There are two ovaries for females one on the right and one on the left side. For a female of reproductive age, eggs are released from each ovary alternatively. Sometimes, pockets or sacs or pouches are formed in the ovary filled with a fluid called the cyst. If the cyst is formed in the right ovary it leads to right side lower stomach pain.

In most of the cases ovarian cyst disappears without management within months. Some women never feel any clinical signs and symptoms whereas in some females it causes too much discomfort that needs management either medically or surgically.

Uterine fibroid

Growth inside the uterus is called a uterine fibroid. This is a noncancerous growth. It causes severe pain in the lower abdomen and if it is anywhere towards the right side of the uterus a severe right lower stomach pain is felt by you while sitting and performing other activities. Severe bleeding and discomfort is associated with fibroids

In some females uterine fibroid is asymptomatic and doesn’t grow in size and there are chances for it to shrink thus a watchful waiting is recommended by experts whereas in others it is vice-versa. Medical management with hormone therapy is helpful in some of you but some need surgical removal of fibroid and in some females uterus as such need to be removed if it is neglected in the initial stages.

What’s the obstetrical (childbirth-related) factors causing pain in the lower abdomen?

Ectopic pregnancy

In a normal pregnancy, the fertilized egg implants in the uterus, and the fetus grows in it. Sometimes the fertilized egg implants in other locations like the fallopian tube, ovary, abdomen, or cervix such pregnancies are called ectopic pregnancy. Severe lower right abdominal pain is experienced in the pregnant mother if pregnancy is ectopic.

Most ectopic pregnancies will have to be terminated with the advice of an obstetrician because the sites like the fallopian tube, ovary etc would not give a favorable atmosphere for the developing embryo and as the fetus enlarges the organ would rupture causing an emergency and life-threatening situation for the mother.

How to diagnose and find out the cause for right lower abdomen pain?

  • A complete history collection including the past and present medical conditions, dietary pattern, family history give a picture for the experts regarding the probable cause of the lower right abdominal pain.
  • An abdominal palpation helps the physician to rule out any inflammation or enlargement of organs inside. Percussion helps them to figure out the abnormal sounds in the intestine.
  • To confirm the diagnosis radiological imaging techniques are used like ultrasonography, MRI scan, CT scan, and so on

How to manage the lower right abdominal pain?

The management of right lower abdominal pain depends upon the treatment of the cause of the pain. In the minor causes, adequate rest and changes in the dietary patterns will relieve the pain and provide comfort.

In case of major causes associated with organs of right lower region either pharmacological management or surgical treatment ought to be followed for relieving pain in the lower right abdomen and to increase discomfort.

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