Upper Left Abdominal Pain Under Ribs: Symptoms and 18 Causes

Ache in your higher left stomach underneath your ribs can have quite a lot of causes. It’s because there are a number of vital organs on this space, together with the:

Though the guts isn’t within the higher left stomach, it might refer ache to the world.

A few of the causes of ache within the higher left stomach could also be handled at dwelling, however others might be life threatening. So it’s vital to contact your physician in case your ache is unexplained, persistent, or extreme — even if you happen to don’t suppose it’s severe.

Learn on to search out out the potential causes and signs of one of these ache, and what it’s best to do.

Coronary heart assault

For those who suspect it’s possible you’ll be having a heart attack or one other medical emergency, name 911 or your native emergency quantity instantly.

Some of the widespread signs of a coronary heart assault is tightness, ache, aching, strain, or squeezing in your chest or arms. This will likely unfold to your jaw, again, or neck.

Different widespread coronary heart assault signs embrace:

You could have all or only one or two of those signs, however if you happen to expertise any of them and suppose it’s possible you’ll be having a coronary heart assault, name 911 or your native emergency quantity instantly.

Treating a coronary heart assault

Coronary heart assaults should be handled in a hospital. The therapy choices embrace medicines and surgical procedure, corresponding to:


Angina is one other heart-related situation that will trigger ache on this space. Angina happens when the blood touring to your coronary heart doesn’t include sufficient oxygen. This will likely trigger tightening or ache in your chest, jaw, again, shoulders, and arms.

Further signs embrace:

  • shortness of breath
  • dizziness
  • nausea
  • fatigue
  • sweating

Angina isn’t a illness of the guts. Slightly, it’s a symptom of a potential undiagnosed coronary heart challenge corresponding to coronary heart disease or coronary microvascular disease.

Treating angina

The therapy choices for angina rely upon the underlying trigger. Remedy choices embrace:

  • medicines like blood thinners and beta-blockers
  • way of life modifications to scale back danger of additional heart disease
  • surgical procedures corresponding to stents or bypass surgical procedure


Pericarditis is brought on by the swelling of the membrane round your coronary heart. This membrane, which additionally turns into irritated, is known as the pericardium.

There are 4 forms of pericarditis. The sort is decided by how lengthy the signs final. These 4 sorts are:

  • Acute: Signs final lower than 3 weeks.
  • Incessant: Signs are steady and final 4 to six weeks.
  • Recurrent: Signs reoccur 4 to six weeks later with no signs between the prior episode.
  • Power: Signs last more than 3 months.

The signs fluctuate barely for every kind, and should embrace:

  • sharp ache within the center or left facet of your chest that will worsen if you inhale
  • a basic feeling of being sick, exhausted, or weak
  • cough
  • uncommon swelling in your stomach or leg
  • shortness of breath whereas mendacity down or reclining
  • heart palpitations
  • slight fever

Treating pericarditis

Remedy depends upon the sort, trigger, and severity. Choices embrace:

Trapped gasoline

Trapped gas happens when gasoline is sluggish or not in a position to transfer by means of your digestive tract. It may be brought on by meals or digestive circumstances. The signs of trapped gasoline embrace:


Treating trapped gasoline

Gasoline is a standard a part of the digestion course of, however it might trigger discomfort. Trapped gasoline might be handled by:

  • making modifications to your weight loss plan
  • lowering or eliminating meals that may trigger gasoline, corresponding to:
  • altering your consuming habits by consuming slower and taking smaller parts
  • stopping gum chewing or utilizing a straw
  • taking over-the-counter (OTC) medicines like Beano, GasX, or Mylanta

For those who expertise persistent trapped gasoline, it’s a good suggestion to verify in along with your physician to see if it’s being trigger by a digestive situation.


Constipation happens when you will have fewer than three bowel actions per week or have stools which might be exhausting and tough to cross.

Constipation is the most common reason for stomach ache in youngsters. Signs of constipation embrace:

  • exhausting stools
  • straining to cross stool
  • feeling unable to empty bowels
  • feeling a blockage stopping a bowel motion
  • needing to press on the stomach to cross stools

Treating constipation

Treatment options for constipation could embrace:

  • making way of life modifications corresponding to making certain you often train
  • not delaying when you will have the urge to have a bowel motion
  • consuming extra fiber in foods and dietary supplements
  • taking OTC and prescription medicines corresponding to laxatives
  • getting remedy to tighten and loosen your pelvic floor muscles

For some individuals with chronic constipation, surgical procedure can also be wanted.


Heartburn is a standard situation that includes delicate to extreme ache within the chest. It’s estimated that greater than 60 million Americans expertise heartburn at the least as soon as a month. Heartburn often happens after consuming.

It usually occurs when acid comes again up from the abdomen into the esophagus. This causes a burning sensation and discomfort in your chest. The ache can really feel sharp or burning, or trigger a tightening sensation.

Some individuals can also describe heartburn as burning that strikes up round their neck and throat, or as discomfort positioned behind the breastbone.

Treating heartburn

Relying on the trigger and your technique of therapy, heartburn can last 2 or more hours. You could possibly manage your heartburn by:

Delicate, rare heartburn can be handled with medicines like antacids. Buy antacids now.

Nonetheless, if you happen to’re taking antacids a number of instances or extra per week, your physician ought to consider you. The heartburn could also be a symptom of an even bigger drawback like acid reflux or GERD.

Gastroesophageal reflux illness (GERD)

Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), generally known as acid reflux disease, is a situation that happens if you expertise heartburn greater than two instances every week. The signs of GERD can also embrace:

  • regurgitating acid
  • hoarseness
  • chest ache
  • throat tightness
  • cough
  • dangerous breath
  • hassle swallowing

Treating GERD

The therapy choices for GERD fluctuate relying on the severity of your signs. Additionally they usually embrace a mixture of way of life modifications and medicines.

Way of life modifications that may assist relieve GERD embrace:

  • shedding weight
  • quitting smoking
  • limiting alcohol consumption
  • elevating your head when you sleep
  • consuming smaller meals
  • not mendacity down inside 3 hours of consuming

Medications for GERD embrace:

In extreme circumstances, when medicines and way of life modifications aren’t efficient, or when issues happen, your physician can also suggest surgery.

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a persistent situation involving a gaggle of intestinal signs that usually happen collectively. The signs fluctuate in severity and length from individual to individual. Signs embrace:

  • stomach ache or cramping, often with diarrhea or constipation
  • stools with a white mucus
  • bloating or gasoline
  • an incapacity to complete a bowel motion or feeling like you may’t end
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Treating IBS

There’s no remedy for IBS. Remedy is aimed toward symptom aid and situation administration. This will likely embrace:

Inflammatory bowel illness (IBD)

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) contains any dysfunction that causes irritation in your digestive tract. The most typical of those circumstances is ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease.

Signs of IBD could embrace:

  • exhaustion or fatigue
  • fever
  • cramping and ache in your stomach
  • diarrhea
  • bloody stools
  • unintended weight reduction
  • lack of urge for food

Treating IBD

There are a selection of therapy choices for IBD, a lot of which might be mixed for the most effective situation administration. Therapies embrace:

  • making way of life modifications, corresponding to modifications to your weight loss plan, train routine, and stress discount methods
  • taking medicines, corresponding to:
    • antibiotics
    • anti-inflammatories
    • immunosuppressants
    • dietary supplements
    • antidiarrheal medicine
    • ache relievers
  • getting dietary assist within the type of a feeding tube, if crucial
  • having surgical procedure that will embrace eradicating the broken a part of your digestive tract or eradicating all or a part of your colon
  • utilizing various remedies like acupuncture

Kidney stones

Kidney stones occur when waste builds up in your kidneys and sticks collectively. This is because of not sufficient water passing by means of. Widespread signs of kidney stones embrace:

  • a pointy ache in your stomach and again
  • ache if you urinate
  • vomiting
  • nausea
  • blood in your urine

Treating kidney stones

The therapy for a kidney stone varies based mostly on the severity and dimension of the kidney stone. Therapies could embrace:

  • taking ache medicines
  • growing your water consumption
  • having a surgical process corresponding to:
    • shock wave lithotripsy, which makes use of sound waves to interrupt up the stone
    • ureteroscopy, which includes utilizing a small scope inserted into your ureter to take away the stone
    • percutaneous nephrolithotomy, through which a small scope is inserted by means of an incision in your again to take out the stone


Pancreatitis happens when your pancreas is infected. There are two forms of pancreatitis: acute and persistent. The signs fluctuate for every one.

Acute pancreatitis signs could embrace:

  • stomach ache that spreads to your again
  • stomach ache that’s worse after consuming
  • abdomen tenderness
  • fever
  • vomiting and nausea
  • elevated pulse price

Chronic pancreatitis signs could embrace:

  • ache in your higher stomach
  • unintentional weight reduction
  • stools that scent and look oily

Treating pancreatitis

Remedy choices for acute pancreatitis embrace:

  • ache medicines
  • momentary fasting
  • fluids by means of a tube into your vein (intravenous line, or IV)
  • surgical procedures that will contain gallbladder removing, draining fluid from the pancreas, or eradicating obstructions within the bile duct

Remedy choices for persistent pancreatitis could embrace all the remedies for acute pancreatitis, in addition to:

Enlarged spleen

An enlarged spleen, or splenomegaly, might be brought on by numerous illnesses and circumstances.

Infections are one of the vital widespread causes of an enlarged spleen. Issues along with your liver, corresponding to cirrhosis and cystic fibrosis, may trigger an enlarged spleen.

Signs it’s possible you’ll expertise with an enlarged spleen embrace:

  • feeling full even after consuming little or no
  • again ache in your left facet
  • again ache that spreads as much as your shoulder
  • an elevated variety of infections
  • shortness of breath
  • tiredness

You may as well expertise no signs with an enlarged spleen.

Treating an enlarged spleen

Remedy for an enlarged spleen depends upon the underlying trigger. Therapies could embrace:

  • antibiotics
  • medicines
  • surgical procedure
  • relaxation


Pneumonia is an an infection that happens in a single or each of your lungs. It could possibly have numerous causes together with fungi, micro organism, and viruses. The next are the most typical signs of pneumonia:

  • chills
  • fever
  • cough containing mucus
  • headache
  • shortness of breath
  • sharp chest ache when coughing or respiratory deeply
  • excessive tiredness
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Treating pneumonia

Pneumonia can usually be handled at dwelling underneath the path of your physician. These at-home remedies embrace:

  • resting
  • growing fluid consumption
  • taking antibiotics
  • taking fever-reducing medicines

Extreme or persistent pneumonia requires therapy within the hospital, together with:

  • IV fluids
  • antibiotics
  • remedies to assist respiratory
  • oxygen


Pleurisy is an irritation of the membrane round your lungs, in addition to on the within of your chest wall. Signs of pleurisy could embrace:

  • chest ache if you cough, sneeze, or breathe
  • cough
  • fever
  • shortness of breath

Treating pleurisy

The therapy choices for pleurisy embrace:

  • antibiotics
  • prescription ache and cough medicine
  • anticoagulants, or medicines to interrupt up any blood clots or giant collections of pus and mucus
  • bronchodilators through metered dose inhaler gadgets, corresponding to these used to deal with bronchial asthma
  • OTC anti-inflammatory medicines and ache relievers

Collapsed lung

A collapsed lung, additionally known as pneumothorax, can happen when air will get within the house between the lung and the chest wall.

Because the air expands, it pushes in opposition to the lung, and finally the lung could collapse. The strain from this trapped air may make it tough to absorb a full breath.

The most typical signs embrace:

  • sharp chest pains
  • a bluish tint to your pores and skin
  • quick heartbeat
  • shortness of breath
  • fatigue
  • elevated price of shallow respiratory
  • cough

Treating a collapsed lung

If the collapse is delicate, then your physician could wish to watch to see if it resolves. In any other case, therapy for a collapsed lung could embrace:


Costochondritis happens when the cartilage that connects your rib cage to your breastbone turns into infected. It could possibly have signs which might be much like a coronary heart assault.

The signs of costochondritis embrace the next:

  • ache on the left facet of your chest
  • ache that’s sharp, appears like strain, or feels achy
  • ache that will increase if you breathe or cough
  • ache in multiple of your ribs

Treating costochondritis

Costochondritis could also be handled with:

  • anti-inflammatories
  • narcotics
  • antiseizure medicines to assist with ache management
  • antidepressants to assist with ache management

Damaged ribs

Damaged ribs are usually brought on by a extreme or traumatic damage. Nonetheless, when you have osteoporosis or one other situation that impacts your bones, you will get a damaged rib from a minor damage. The signs embrace:

  • extreme chest ache
  • ache that’s worse if you breathe
  • ache that makes it tough so that you can take a full breath
  • ache that lasts for an prolonged time period, generally weeks

Treating damaged ribs

Damaged ribs are often handled with:

  • ache relievers
  • deep respiratory workouts
  • coughing, to keep away from pneumonia
  • hospitalization


Endocarditis is an an infection of your coronary heart’s inside lining. The signs of endocarditis could embrace:

  • coronary heart failure
  • fever
  • coronary heart murmur
  • fatigue
  • unintended weight reduction
  • uninteresting stomach ache
  • feeling full even after a small meal

Treating endocarditis

The therapy choices for endocarditis embrace antibiotics and surgical procedure.


Appendicitis happens when your appendix is infected. Though the appendix isn’t positioned within the higher left stomach, in uncommon circumstances, it might trigger ache within the space. The signs could embrace:

Treating appendicitis

Normally, appendicitis is handled by an appendectomy surgery to take away the appendix.

As you may see, the reason for higher left stomach ache varies considerably and could also be from one thing as minor as heartburn. Nonetheless, if the ache is new, persistent, and extreme, it’s best to go to your physician.

In case your signs embrace any of the life threatening signs talked about on this article, it’s best to name 911 or your native emergency companies instantly.

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