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Help4Health, Registered Nurse
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 7639
Experience:  Relax. Let's work together. Practical solutions.
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Last night I started suddenly having lower back pain and

Customer Question

Last night I started suddenly having lower back pain and it's continued through today. It specifically hurts like a dull pain when I breathe deeply. I've read that this could be a sign of kidney stones but could also be a sign of constipation. I did have a bowel movement this morning but not since. I've eaten a lot of pizza with extra cheese over the past few days and I've also drank about a 6-pack a day over the past week. Last night I ate some stew that was rather salty. It seemed like the pain lessened a bit after my bowel movement this morning but is now coming back after I've eaten a couple sandwiches and some coffee today. I've not had any alcohol today, only water coffee and carrot juice to drink. Could this be a sign of onset constipation or something more serious having to do with my kidneys? Help!! :(
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  Help4Health replied 6 years ago.

Hello and thanks for choosing Just Answer®.

I am a registered nurse and will be glad to try and assist you. To provide you with accurate information, could you please clarify this point:

  1. Do you have any of the following symptoms?: fever, chills, cough, sputum (phlegm) production, shortness of breath

Once I hear back from you, I will be glad to let you know my answer. There may be some delay as I am assisting other customers or am away from my computer. Please rest assured, however, that I will get back to you as soon as possible.


Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I've been clearing my throat a lot and some phlegm for the past week or so, but that is it.
Expert:  Help4Health replied 6 years ago.
Thanks so much for choosing this forum to pose your important legal question. I will do my best to give you some honest and accurate guidance as I answer your question.


  1. I am a registered nurse with acute adult health care experience. I will be glad to try and answer your question. I hope that the following information will be helpful to you, but please just write back if you have any follow-up questions or need clarification after reviewing the following information.
  2. "Could this be a sign of onset constipation or something more serious having to do with my kidneys?" Thank you for taking the time to write back and supply the additional information as requested, which was helpful to my analysis of your inquiry. Please allow me to wish you the very best in terms of your health. Alright, here is what represents the most likely possibilities based on your description. I was about concerned about the possibility of an occult pneumonia. However, based on your negative review of symptoms that would be far from the top of the list of concerns. Yes, this could absolutely be simple obstipation. In a (hopefully) generally healthy young male who admits to eating a good amount of cheese, that would be the most logical first educated guess. Water is nature's softener, so liberally consuming plenty of that along with adequate dietary fiber is the first step. However, there are a couple of much more serious potentials concerns, namely pyelonephritis (kidney infection) or pyelolithiasis (kidney stone). Both are generally quite painful and accompanied by more "dramatic" signs and symptoms (i.e. fever, generalized malaise, urinary symptoms, etc.) that your more subtle clinical presentation. If you do not find relief with your next bowel movement, which if hard in texture can easily be remedied by water and an over-the-counter stool softener, you should definitely seek a medical evaluation. Seeing a health care provider would always be the most prudent approach should your problem not promptly resolve on its own.
  3. I hope that makes sense, but please do not hesitate to write back if needed. I shall be signing off soon to attend to some other professional obligations. Please rest assured, however, that I will be sure to check for any updated posts from you when I return to this online forum.

I hope that this information has been helpful to you. If we can be of any further assistance please free to use our service again. Best wishes for a successful outcome.

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The information provided is general in nature only and should not be construed as legal advice. By using this forum, you acknowledge that no nurse-patient relationship has been created between you and Benjamin M. Burt, Jr., RN, BSN, MSN/FNP/APRN Candidate. You should always consult in person with a licensed, practicing health care professional of an applicable discipline/specialty in your state.