Potential Causes of Lower Back Pain in the Right Side

Back pain—the annoying, all-too-familiar foe. It can occur anywhere, from the base of your neck, down to your lumbar area (lower back).

For upper and middle back pain, your lifestyle can play a role, but so can poor posture, stress, and injury. However, if your pain is isolated to just one side of your lower back, you may wonder what it could be due to: whether it is something triggered by the same factors, or it denotes a more serious condition.

Let’s go over a few common potential causes of lower right back pain and find out which of them warrant emergency care or a visit to either your pain management specialist or primary care physician.


Appendicitis refers to the inflammation of the finger-shaped pouch (appendix) that protrudes from your colon. The inflammation occurs as a result of a blockage brought on by a hardened stool (in some cases, a tumor); or bacterial, parasitic, or viral infection in your gastrointestinal tract.

The appendix sits in the lower right part of your abdomen. If your appendix gets inflamed, you may feel lower right back pain along with low-grade fever (which intensifies as your condition progresses, nausea and vomiting, loss of appetite, and other symptoms.

Appendicitis is a medical emergency, as it can lead to potentially life-threatening complications: it requires antibiotic therapy and surgery.

Herniated Discs

This common spinal condition affects the gel-filled cushions between the small, individual bones that form the spinal column (vertebrae). Disc herniation occurs when a fragment of the inner core of the disc (nucleus) pushes through a crack or tear in its exterior layer (annulus).

Discs herniate due to aging, injury, or a combination of both. If you have a physically demanding job or pastime, or one that involves pulling, pushing, heavy lifting, or twisting, you may be at a greater risk of herniating your disc.

The discs in the lumbar area are the most prone to herniation because they are the most mobile, and they bear the greatest amount of biomechanical strains in your spine.

A herniated lumbar disc can cause intermittent or continuous pain that you may feel in the lower right area of your back. If the herniated disc presses on your sciatic nerve, which starts right outside of your lower back), it can cause discomfort that can range from a mild ache to a sharp, burning, or excruciating pain that can sometimes feel like an electric shock. The pain is often unilateral (affecting just one side of your body), and can radiate down the back of your leg. You may also experience numbness, tingling sensation, or muscle weakness in your affected leg.

Muscle Spasms

Sitting for prolonged periods of time, especially in a hunched-over position, can put a tremendous amount of pressure on your lower back muscles and cause spasms. Prolonged sitting can also put your disc at risk for herniation and lead to recurring episodes of lower back pain.

Kidney and Bladder Problems

Also called renal calculi, kidney stones are hard, mineral deposits that form in the interior of the kidneys. Kidney stones can cause lower back pain, sometimes in the right side, though it can occur on both sides. The pain can be spasmodic and intense and accompanied by difficulty urinating, fever, and nausea.

Urinary tract infections can impact the kidneys and bladder as well. They cause lower back pain in both sides, flank or groin pain, pain during urination, fever, chills, and nausea.

Kidney and bladder problems can be treated by your primary care physician or urologist.

Lower Back Pain Treatment in Dover, DE

At the Delaware Back Pain & Sports Rehabilitation Centers, our interventional pain management specialists offer an extensive range of nonsurgical treatment options—all proven to effectively quell back pain or even reverse it.

For back pain whose underlying causes warrant surgical or advanced care, we will be glad to point you to the right specialist.

To arrange a consultation with one of our pain management doctors, contact our staff at one of our seven convenient locations. You may also use our request form to schedule an appointment today.

Leave a Reply