Flank pain is a type of abdominal pain that is usually felt in the lower outside edge of one side of the torso, just above the hip. It is sometimes referred to as loin pain or side pain. The area of flank pain is commonly referred to as the renal angle, as it coincides with the area where the kidneys are located.
In some people, flank pain can be caused by disorders of the urinary tract, including the kidneys, ureters, and bladder, and is often accompanied by other symptoms such as bloody or cloudy urine, chills, fever, or abdominal pain.
Common causes of flank pain include urinary tract infections, kidney stones, trauma to the kidney, tumors, or other conditions that involve the urinary tract or kidneys. Flank pain is usually diagnosed with a physical examination and history of the patient, as well as further testing, such as an ultrasound, x-ray, or CT scan.
Treatment depends on the cause of the pain and may involve medication, lifestyle changes, or other options.
What does flank pain feel like?
Flank pain can feel like a sharp, stabbing pain or a dull, achy pain that radiates across the lower back and/or sides of the abdomen. It typically takes the form of a dull, cramp-like ache that may be constant or may come and go.
In more severe cases, you may feel a sharp, knife-like pain that radiates from the lower back to the sides of the abdomen, back, or groin. You may also experience muscle spasms or tenderness in the area.
Depending on the cause of your flank pain, you may feel it on one or both sides of your body. Some people may experience radiating pain in their testicles when flank pain is present. It’s important to seek medical attention if you experience persistent or severe flank pain, as it could be a sign of infection or other medical condition.
How do I know if I have flank pain?
Flank pain is pain that occurs in the lower back and is often accompanied by abdominal discomfort, such as nausea and vomiting. To determine if you have flank pain, pay attention to where your pain is located.
It will likely be located in your lower back, specifically near your kidneys. You may also feel tenderness in that area when you press on it. In addition to your back, you may also experience pain in your hips and legs.
Other common symptoms of flank pain include fever, nausea, and chills. If you are experiencing flank pain, it is important to consult your doctor as it may be a sign of an underlying medical condition.
Furthermore, your doctor may recommend that you get imaging tests, such as an ultrasound or a CT scan, to further investigate the cause of your symptoms.
Where do you press to check for kidney pain?
To check for kidney pain, you need to press firmly on both of your sides just below your rib cage. If you press on one side and feel pain, it may be a sign that you have a kidney infection or other kidney-related problem.
You should also pay close attention to the area around your belly button. If you experience pain in this area, this could be a sign of a problem with the urinary tract, such as a kidney stone. Additionally, it is important to talk to your doctor if you have any pain in your abdomen or lower back, even if it is just dull or intermittent.
While these symptoms can be common in a variety of conditions, they can also indicate kidney issues and should be investigated as soon as possible.
What is the most common cause of flank pain?
The most common cause of flank pain is kidney stones. When kidney stones move through the urinary tract, they can cause severe pain in the side or back, below the ribs, and sometimes in the groin. Other causes of flank pain include muscle strain, urinary tract infections, herniated discs, and bladder infections.
Other less common causes of flank pain can include vascular disorders, ruptured ovarian cysts, organ bleeding, and diseases like pancreatitis and appendicitis. If an individual is experiencing flank pain, it is important to visit a doctor to determine the cause.
How do I know if my pain is from my kidney?
If your pain is originating from your kidney, then it may be sharp, cramping pain that is focused around your mid to lower back region. You may also notice any pain radiating down to your abdomen, groin and other nearby areas.
Additional symptoms to keep an eye out for include fever, nausea, vomiting, chills, severe pain with movement, and a feeling of urgency when you urinate. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is important to contact your doctor as soon as possible to determine if the cause is your kidneys.
How can you tell difference between back pain and kidney pain?
Back pain and kidney pain can be difficult to tell the difference between at times, as the pain can feel very similar. However, there are some key differences that can help you tell the difference. Firstly, back pain usually presents itself as a constant pain in the lower or middle back and is usually caused by an issue with the spine.
Kidney pain, on the other hand, typically originates from either one or both kidneys and is more often than not a sharp, shooting pain that can be episodic in nature. Furthermore, back pain can often be accompanied by stiffness in the area or even muscle spasms, whereas kidney pain is much less likely to have these symptoms.
Additionally, when it comes to kidney pain, pain or pressure in the abdomen and groin area can also be a symptom and is much less common with back pain.
If you are concerned that you or someone else is experiencing kidney pain, it is important to seek medical advice and attention as soon as possible. Proper diagnosis and treatments can be administered to alleviate symptoms and diagnose underlying issues.
How do you know if your kidneys are hurting you?
If you are experiencing pain, it is important to visit your healthcare provider to determine the source. While the exact cause of your pain may not be immediately clear, there are a few symptoms to be on the lookout for associated with kidney pain.
These may include, but are not limited to, lower back pain, pain on either side of your spine, pain that spreads to your abdomen and groin, pain when urinating, frequent urination, cloudy, dark, or blood-tinged urine, or a fever.
If you are experiencing these symptoms, it is important to speak to your healthcare provider to get an accurate diagnosis and determine appropriate treatment. Additionally, it is important to take care of other aspects of your health such as diet, physical activity, stress, and drinking plenty of water, as this can help prevent the escalation of kidney problems.
When should I worry about flank pain?
You should be concerned about flank pain when your pain is severe or has lasted for an extended period of time, especially if it is accompanied by other symptoms like fever, chills, nausea, vomiting, or difficulty urinating.
Additionally, if the pain radiates from your back to your lower abdomen or groin area, or if you have a history of kidney diseases or urinary tract infections, it is important to seek medical attention.
Flank pain can be a symptom of a serious condition, such as a kidney infection, kidney stones, pyelonephritis, bladder diverticulum, appendicitis and even cancer, so it is important to contact your doctor at the first sign of it.
What can cause flank pain other than kidneys?
Flank pain can be caused by a variety of medical conditions other than kidney-related issues. Some of the more common non-kidney causes of flank pain can include:
-Muscle strains from exercise or physical activity: a mild tear of the muscle fibers can result in tenderness and pain in the flank region;
-Pancreatitis: an inflammation or infection of the pancreas can cause chronic pain in the flank;
-Testicular torsion: a twisting of the spermatic cord that affects the testicles can lead to pain in the flank;
-Uterine fibroids: growths on or inside the uterus can cause discomfort on either side in the flank region;
-Urinary tract infection: infection of the urinary tract can cause pain in the flank and lower back;
-Appendicitis: inflammation of the appendix can cause flank pain;
-Thoracic aortic aneurysm: an enlargement of the aorta in the chest cavity can cause flank pain;
-Gastrointestinal issues: a wide range of digestive problems can cause abdominal pain that radiates to the lower back, including indigestion, ulcers, and irritable bowel syndrome.
Can you have flank pain for no reason?
Yes, it is possible to experience flank pain without an identifiable reason. This type of flank pain is often referred to as idiopathic flank pain, meaning that there is no obvious cause. Idiopathic flank pain is often described as a dull ache that may spread to the lower abdomen and may come and go in intensity.
Possible causes of idiopathic flank pain include tension in the muscles of the abdomen and back, viral infections, and issues with the intestines and kidneys. On rare occasions, the cause can not be determined and the patient is said to have chronic idiopathic flank pain.
In these cases, lifestyle modifications, relaxation therapy, and medications can help to reduce the pain. Given that flank pain can also be a symptom of more serious conditions, it is important to speak with a medical professional if the pain is persistent and accompanied by other symptoms such as fever, nausea, and vomiting.
Why won’t my flank pain go away?
If you have been experiencing persistent flank pain, and it has not improved after a few days, you should consult with your healthcare provider as soon as possible. Including kidney stones, muscle strain, kidney infection, and urinary tract infection.
Kidney stones can cause a sharp pain in the back, while muscle strain can cause a dull ache. Kidney infection or urinary tract infection can result in pain, as well as other symptoms, such as fever, nausea, vomiting, and/or difficulty urinating.
Other causes of flank pain can include cysts, tumors, and blockages in the urinary tract.
If you are experiencing flank pain, it is important to understand the cause in order to begin the most effective treatment. Depending on the cause, the treatment may include antibiotics, rest and hydration, or surgery.
Therefore, it is important to speak to your healthcare provider as soon as possible to determine the cause of your flank pain and begin the appropriate treatment.
What can be mistaken for kidney pain?
Kidney pain can be mistaken for other health conditions and symptoms that may exist in the abdominal area. These include issues in the abdominal aorta, such as an abdominal aortic aneurysm, as well as certain conditions affecting the digestive system, such as constipation or irritable bowel syndrome.
Other conditions such as appendicitis, ovarian cysts, urinary tract infections, kidney stones, and even types of influenza can all cause symptoms that are similar to kidney pain. If you are experiencing sharp or dull pain in your lower back, it is important to see a doctor to determine the cause.
The doctor may run tests to confirm that the pain is coming from the kidney, such as a urinalysis or imaging tests.
What is the differential diagnosis for flank pain?
The differential diagnosis for flank pain includes many possible causes which can include but are not limited to infections, musculoskeletal disorders, urinary tract issues, diseases of the kidney or abdominal cavity, endocrine disorders, trauma, and vascular causes.
With that being said, some of the more common infectious causes are pyelonephritis, cystitis, and prostatitis. Musculoskeletal causes include vertebral fracture or infection, inflammatory conditions, intercostal neuralgia, and abdominal muscle strain.
Urinary tract disorders are any type of inflammation in the bladder, kidneys or urethra, which can cause pain in the flanks. As far as diseases of the abdomen and kidney, these can include kidney stones, renal infarcts, nephrotic syndrome or renal artery stenosis.
As far as endocrine causes, these could include hyperparathyroidism, hyperglycemia, or adrenal disorders such as Cushing syndrome or Conn’s syndrome. Lastly, ultrasound, CT or MRI may be of help in assessing for trauma or vascular sources.
In any case, further investigation into possible causes of flank pain is essential to reach a firm diagnosis and appropriate treatment plan.
What can mimic kidney stone pain?
Ranging from other kidney issues such as kidney infections and kidney cysts, to conditions that don’t involve the kidneys. Some of the more common conditions that can mimic the pain of a kidney stone include urinary tract infections, bladder infections, kidney infections, and structural abnormalities of the urinary system.
It is also possible for other abdominal or pelvic conditions to cause pain that is similar to the pain of a kidney stone, such as a central abdominal hernia. Lastly, it is possible for the pain of a kidney stone to be confused with the pain of other unrelated issues, such as appendicitis or diverticulitis.
Therefore, it is important for individuals experiencing pain that could potentially be a kidney stone to see a doctor for diagnosis and treatment.