Some possible causes of pain on the left side under the ribs include acid reflux, indigestion or gas in the colon according to MedGuidance.com. Other causes include gas in the intestinal tract, problems with the spleen or irritable bowel syndrome.
If a person feels the pain after a large meal and there are no other symptoms, the cause may be indigestion or acid reflux, according to MedGuidance.com. Consuming food or drinks with a high acidic content causes acid reflux. Gas trapped in the colon can also cause pain in the upper abdomen or lower chest on the left side. Sitting in an upright position helps relieve the discomfort.
Stomach ulcers cause pain under the left rib cage that can also reach the shoulder blades. The pain can last a few minutes and be recurring, according to MedGuidance.com. Pain, bloating and intestinal cramps on the left side can point to irritable bowel syndrome, which also presents with loose stools or constipation.
A sudden, sharp pain under the ribs on the left of the body that also radiates to the shoulders can signify an enlarged spleen when the pain is sharper while breathing in deeply, according to WebMD. Other symptoms of an enlarged spleen include fatigue, jaundice and weight loss.