Diseases & Conditions

Right Sided Chest Pain: Causes, Complications & Recommendations

The pain chest is not always associated to a heart attack. If you feel pain in the right side you can dismiss this concern, because a heart attack manifest the pain in the left side of the chest. However exist other reasons that can cause pain in the right side of the chest for example breathing issues, air excess, anxiety crisis or muscle fatigue.

How does right chest pain starts?

The most important thing that should be considered when the chest pain occur is the intensity of the pain and what kind of pain you feels, if it is sharp, oppressive, lacerating or colicky, and if it is presented with another issues such as fever or nausea.

Just to clarify all your doubts, if you feel pain in the right side of your chest, they aren’t symptoms of a heart attack, but depending of the severity of it, you maybe need medical assistance.

On the other hand, if you feel pain in the upper right chest like stitches or needles, it means that you probably have air or gas excess, this kind of pain will appear and disappears. This case is very common, and you do not need to visit the doctor due these symptoms, in general, glass of water or jog for a few minutes will be enough to overcome the pain sensation.

However, if you noted that the pain takes more than 20 minutes to diminish or even get worse while the time passes, and start to present another symptoms such as dizziness, cold sweating, difficulty breathing or severe headache, you should go to the hospital emergency, because as was already expressed something more could be affecting your body and the pain in the chest is only a consequence and not the root of the problem.

What organ is on the right side of your chest?

Now, that you know that pain in the right side of your chest is unrelated to a heart attack, is necessary to know what organs are located in the right side and how the chest anatomy is.

In this area exist a small portion of the right side of the heart and the right lung. There’s also many long blood vessels for example the ascending aorta and pulmonary blood vessels. The right side of the chest is also the region where the esophagus is located, besides any other structures such as lymph nodes, and nerves, can be found in the right side. The human ribs also are located in this side and any disorders of the spine could present pain in this side too!

Pain Origins

When, you feel pain in the right side, the origin of it could be due to a particular problem in that side or instead could be the consequence of a referred pain. The referred pain is the term used for the pain presented in any section of the body, in this case in the right thorax, but is the reflection of any other problem and the source of the pain is located to certain distance of it.

There is another case that need be take into consideration and that is the upper abdominal disorders, because this kind of issues can be felt it on the upper right chest, due the irritation of the diaphragm, another symptom associated to it, will be pain in the right shoulder.

Another fundamentals organs are located in this site such as the liver, the gallbladder, and part of the pancreas, so if you are suffering of pancreatitis or suffer of liver inflammation the body will react with pain in the right side including the upper right side chest and back.

As you can see in the right side are many organs, and when a disorder exist your body will warn you with pain in the right side of your chest. You have to take in mind, that finding the root cause of this pain, isn’t an easy task. Tthat is why it is recommended to present the medical story in order to help the doctor in the search of the problem. Think about the search of the source of right-sided chest pain like the puzzle assembly, while more pieces you have available, will be easier to solve it.

The most knowing cases that can cause pain in the right side of the chest, where the explanation is based in the symptom and how to react in those situations to overcome the pain, you have to remember that not every pain in the right side are emergencies.

Most common causes

Air or Gas Excess: The most common cause of pain chest in the right side is related to air or gas excess. This condition is often related to people that suffer from constipation. The accumulation of gas in the intestine can push some abdominal organs, eventually creating a pain that radiates to the chest. The symptom associated to this issue is the feeling of a sharp pain of the stabbing type that disappears and reappears repeatedly, especially when you bend over your belly to pick up something from the floor. The best way of overcome this pain is to do massages in the region of the intestine to help push the gases.

Anxiety and stress are another common causes that induce pain and discomfort in the right side of the thorax; besides, the sharp pain feeling, another symptoms are associated to it such as rapid breathing, excess perspiration, rapid heartbeat, nausea, and even alterations in the functioning of the intestine. In those cases it is recommended to take a long rest in a calm place, drink a valerian tea or chamomile to calm anxiety or do some entertaining activities.

Related: 5 Healthy Food Choices That Fight Stress & Keep You Calm

Muscular pain: There is a particular cause which everybody are expose day after day, which are muscular pain mainly in those people who training with regularity in the gym or does some type of sport.

Cough and carrying heavy objects: However, the pain can appear after performing the simplest activities such as coughing a lot or carrying heavy objects. Besides in scary or stressing moments, the muscles can also contract, which produce inflammation and pain typically in the right side.

Moving the torso: It is a pain that can worsen when breathing, but that is also aggravated by moving the trunk to see backwards. A good way to relieve the muscle pain is taking a rest and applying warm compresses on the painful area. So far, you had passed through some cases that are not necessarily an emergency and can be treated at home.

Complications & Medical Attention

Paying attention when the pain gets worse due to any heavy work or when it is accompanied by shortness of breath, dizziness and cold sweating. Generally, the pain is related to the muscle when you feel a pressure in the right side and when touch the affected area hurts.

If you feel any of these symptoms you should consult your doctor because the pain is reflecting other health problems. Now we are going to consider some of the most complicated cases that need medical attention. One of the most important is the pain induced by lung deficiencies. In these cases the chest pain will be associated to:

  • asthma infection
  • bronchitis.

The pain will be extended from the back side where the lung is located to the upper right side of the chest.

Depending on which lung is infected, the pain can start on the left or right side the symptoms associated are breathing difficult, especially when you want to take a deep breath. There maybe also present a feeling of wheezing or frequent coughing. The lung right or left side infection should be identified by a specialized that can prescribe the proper treatment

Stomach issues: can produce a pain in the right side of the chest, mostly the cases that involved the esophagus or organs on the right side of the body as was described before. For example the Gastro esophageal reflux disease (GERD) – GERD can be a cause of symptoms of heartburn and indigestion, which can be accompanied with pain in the right side of the chest. In these cases the doctor will recommend an antacid and antispasmodic to control the symptoms and reduce the pain.

Tests: Depending of the severity of your symptoms, your doctor can request different tests to find the problem. One of the first thing that will check is the breathing system checking your lungs and circulation vessels. If everything seems in order, a physical exam will be required.

Spine deviation: In most cases the physical exam shows the root of the problem such as a spine deviation. If you have pain in the right side of your chest maybe the ribs and spine are making pressure in a muscle or a blood vessel, for that reason when you touch that area or make any effort the pain appear again.

In case that all these results do not found any problem the doctor probably will require a magnetic resonance in the worst case, that way he/she will be able to evaluate the entire system and find the pain source.

Featured image by Shutterstock.

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