Having a pain in right side of chest is a reason to worry but not a reason to panic. Generally, only pains in the left side of the chest are linked to heart problems, but pain in the right side of chest can have a wide variety of causes, some of which can be life-threatening health problems. Even so, most right side chest pain is not a sign of major health problems. You should consult a medical professional, if such a pain persists and gets out of control.

Causes of Pain in Right Side of Chest


Digestion-Related Causes

  • Indigestion or heartburn is one of the major causes of such pain. Indigestion occurs when stomach acid gets into the esophagus or windpipe causing the stomach filled with undigested food. Many people have indigestion these days because of a poor diet, medications, stress, smoking and drinking too much of certain liquids like alcohol and coffee. Most people can overcome indigestion by turning to a healthy diet, getting rid of bad habits and using probiotics to restore the good bacteria needed for digestion in the stomach.

  • Basically, Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease is chronic indigestion that doesn't go away. The cause is usually problems with the digestive system, such as infections or a lack of bacteria needed for digestion. Medical treatment is necessary if indigestion does not clear up on its own.

  • Food blockages: The esophagus, the tube that connects the mouth to the digestive system, is very small and it can easily get blocked, causing pain and requiring medical attention.


Viral Infections

Viruses like those that cause colds and the flu can cause pleurisy and pain in right side of chest. The pain usually occurs while you breathe or cough. In a healthy person, these infections usually clear up with rest. You can avoid some of these pains by getting your flu vaccination every year.


Gallbladder Infection

The gallbladder is a small pouch under the liver that stores bile, a substance necessary for digestion. The gallbladder can get blocked and infected, usually by gallstones. This can create sharp pain in right side of chest. In order to make a diagnosis, doctors will need to scan or x-ray your chest. There are a wide variety of treatments for gallbladder infections, including surgery and antibiotics. The good news is most people will recover with proper treatment.


Pancreas Inflammation

Pain in right side of chest that gets worse when you lie down often originates in the pancreas. The pancreas is a small organ and can be associated with serious health problems, including cystic fibrosis, cancer and diabetes, so medical help is needed.


Liver Inflammation

The usual cause of liver inflammation is an infection of the liver or hepatitis. It can also be caused by alcohol abuse, toxic chemicals and some other problems. Hepatitis can be treated with antibiotics, but it does require medical care because serious cases can be debilitating.



This condition is caused by an infection that creates inflammations around the lungs. Pleurisy causes pain when a person coughs or breathes. It isn’t as common anymore because of antibiotics and other medical treatments. You should seek medical care because it can be a symptom of serious infections, such as pneumonia.


Lung Diseases

Lung problems, including asthma, bronchitis, emphysema and infections can trigger pain in right side of chest. Such problems are often worse in smokers and people with damaged lungs.

  • Pneumothorax is a serious condition that occurs when a part of a lung collapses. Pneumothorax usually occurs after an injury such as those from falls and car accidents. If you experience right-side chest pain after an accident, you should seek medical help immediately.

  • Pneumonia occurs when the lungs fill up with fluid and over 50 different infections can cause it. Some causes can be prevented by vaccines, but severe cases can be fatal so medical care is needed.


Cardiovascular Problems

Pain in right side of chest can be caused by some heart problems, including heart attacks, angina, cardiomyopathy and the like.

  • Angina can cause chest pains accompanied by discomfort, heaviness, aching, burning and pressure is usually a symptom of heart disease.

  • Aortic dissection occurs when a small tear develops in the aorta, the valve that connects the heart to the rest of the body. It can be caused by accidents or high blood pressure and can be life-threatening. If this is the case, surgery is required.


Other Causes

  • Stress can cause right-side chest pain and worsen it. Stress can usually be dealt with through lifestyle changes and practices like meditation.

  • Rib displacement occurs when a rib is slightly out of alignment. It usually happens after excessive coughing, athletic activities or an accident. This usually clears by itself; but if it doesn’t, it could be a rib fracture, which will require medical care.

  • Fibromyalgia is a serious inflammation of the cartilage and joints in the ribs, similar to arthritis; it can be treated with prescription medicines and pain relievers.

  • Costochondritis is an inflammation of cartilage and joints of the chest bone. It is not serious and can be treated with hot compress, pain relievers and rest.

  • One or more tumors in certain places can cause serious right-side chest pain. It will require medical treatment, usually surgery.

See a Doctor

A severe pain in right side of chest can be a symptom of a serious medical problem and you should see your doctor for pain in right side of chest, if:

  • The pain does not go away after a few day or starts getting worse.

  • You have problems swallowing.

  • You have fever and/or chills and cough up a lot of mucus.

  • The pain is accompanied by nausea, dizziness, trouble thinking, excessive sweating, a rapid heart rate or heavy breathing.

  • The pain starts to spread to other parts of your body.

  • The pain is accompanied by a feeling of pressure, squeezing, tightness or crushing.

  • The pain causes you to faint or collapse.

  • You are unable to get up or move.

  • The pain is accompanied by low blood pressure or a low pulse.


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  • Julian LillaOct.18 02:09
    This is a question. I just noticed my whole upper right side of my chest is hurting me, I do lift heavy things it's a part of my job, & I can't really move my arm a lot. Of I do it hurts more. Does anyone have an idea what it is? Please help it was spreading a little to my right leg.
  • Tammy LambertOct.13 19:31
    I just want to let you all know on here that my mom had this problem for a while and it was finally found that she has an esauphgus infection dr. Gave her 7 diflucan (fluconazole) she took one a day for 7 days and never had the right chest pain again, my son has been complaining about his chest on the right side for months, dr. has done xrays and checked him out, then my mom told me about her episode, he is 24 by the way, so we are going to take the medicene like she did and see if it clears up, I really think this is his problem to because he has had heartburn and indigestion in the past, you can have your dr to do a throut culture to chest for this, it could be the answer.
  • Alax Walker FadedOct.13 19:14
    Drink Desi ( Endemic Indian ) Cow Urine . I have given this to lot of people . They are now good . Add 20 ml urine to one glass of water . By reading this comment alot of masses think what I am suggesting but it is the cheapest source of remedy .
  • AshleyOct.6 19:08
    I am a 25 year old caucasian female. I randomly experience sharp pains in the right side of my chest, ONLY while trying to inhale.. This has been happening for as long as I can remember. As a child, my mother told me that it was "growing pains." Being 25 years old, 26 next month, I cannot accept the answer of "growing pains" any longer. I've researched pneumothorax, pleurisy, and other lung related issues but I do not have the symptoms/signs associated with those conditions. It has been consistently happening for as long as I can remember about 2-3 times a week?? Any suggestions/comments would be greatly appreciated.
  • NomvelisoOct.4 21:04
    I had a pain at the right side of my chest it started with the kramps on my stomach it goes to my back what should I use to relief the pain
  • TyroneOct.2 04:49
    Hi there's a little bit of pain in my right iam really freakin out cuz when I search on web some of the symptoms of pluerisy I have should I got to the doctor ?
  • FatimaSep.27 15:21
    I am 24 year old female , i am having pain in my right side for almost two year , it gets worst when i lay down or chang my side on bed , it feels like i m having space in my chest n sometimes the pain gets unbearable.
  • JeffSep.24 06:59
    I am 15 years old. I was sitting down and i suddenly got pain in the right side of my chest. I couldn't stand up because of the pain. About 10min later the pain reduced and i could get up. The pain is still there. It has been about 5 days now. The chest pain is more to the bottom right. What is the reason and what can i do?
  • MandySep.23 11:57
    Mandy Nkosi I have this unbearable pain on the left-hand side under my breast and it just won't go away,my assumption might be wrong or right though,I somehow Think i have some cardiac issues but I am not sure as the last time I was at the clinic the Nurse just said it was just stress and gave me pills then it was it...the pain just won't go away and whenever it is back i get tired....
  • Shelby Sep.14 05:43
    Im 18 yrs. Old. I've been having right side chest pains. It feels like tight pressure. It always last around 15-20 mins. They sometimes randomly occur. My guess is stress. I don't have any medical problems that I'm aware of.
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