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Have you got pain in the right side of your abdomen? It could signal four conditions

Pain in your abdomen can feel scary, especially if the cause is unknown. Most of the time, it’s nothing to be concerned about. But sometimes it can be caused by something more serious. Specifically, pain in the upper right side of your abdomen may be a warning sign of several dangerous conditions. So, what are the possible causes of pain in the upper right side of your tummy?

According to doctors, one of the most likely sources of pain in your upper abdomen is heartburn, which is usually harmless.

Doctor Roshaan Saloojee, a GP at Livi, the digital healthcare provider, explained that heartburn can cause a feeling of pressure in your tummy.

They said: “Heartburn, indigestion or acid reflux can cause pain in your upper stomach, burning in your chest and a sour taste in your mouth. It can also feel like pressure in your chest or tummy that gets better when you burp.

“Heartburn is commonly caused by overeating, diet, alcohol or stress. You can treat it with over-the-counter medicine and by avoiding things that trigger your symptoms.

“It can also help to eat smaller meals and avoid eating late at night or lying down after eating.

“On its own, heartburn is normal from time to time. But if it happens frequently and you have symptoms like fatigue, difficulty swallowing, vomiting, a lump in your stomach or weight loss, speak to a doctor.”

Could Covid be a cause?

Some people with COVID-19 have reported the appearance of various abdominal paints.

The Zoe Health study, which collects data from millions of people who report their symptoms on the study’s app, has found that tummy pain is a “fairly rare symptom” of COVID-19, according to the study leaders.

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The people in their study reported experiencing “generalised pain” in the middle of their bellies.

Early on in the coronavirus pandemic, some people with the disease also were reported to have experienced pain in their upper right abdominal area.

But according to the Zoe study, “if you’re experiencing a localised pain that appears in only one area of your belly, it’s unlikely to be COVID-19″.

Fatty liver disease

Fatty liver disease, which is characterised by the buildup of fat in the liver, is a more serious cause of tummy pain.

Fatty liver disease can be related to excessive alcohol consumption, as well as other factors. If the condition isn’t caused by alcohol consumption it is called non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.

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The buildup of fat in the liver can damage the organ and result in it becoming inflamed and scarred over time.

In its early stages, the condition doesn’t tend to show any symptoms.

But you might experience pain in the upper right of your abdomen if you have an advanced form of fatty liver disease called fibrosis.

According to the NHS, people with fibrosis could experience the following symptoms:

  • A dull or aching pain in the top right of the tummy (over the lower right side of the ribs)
  • Extreme tiredness
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Weakness.

Other conditions that can cause pain in the upper right of your tummy include gallbladder problems, gallstones, kidney problems, kidney stones, and various forms of cancer.

The health body Johns Hopkins Medicine explains: “A common symptom of pancreatic cancer is a dull pain in the upper abdomen (belly) and/or middle or upper back that comes and goes.”

According to the NHS, pain at the top of your tummy may also be a sign of stomach cancer.

Since pain that specifically affects the upper right of your abdomen can be a sign of conditions that need treatment, it is important to get checked by a health professional if you experience it.

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