Kidney pain — also called renal pain — refers to pain arising from infection, injury or inflammation of a kidney. You may feel kidney pain as a dull, one-sided ache in your upper back, often accompanied by fever and urinary symptoms.

Some people are surprised to learn exactly where the kidneys are located. Your kidneys are located relatively high in your body, under your lower ribs. It's not unusual to attribute back pain or side (flank) pain to your kidneys. But more often than not, your kidneys probably aren't the cause of your back or flank pain.

Call your doctor for a same-day appointment if:

  • You have constant, dull, one-sided pain in your back or flank
  • You experience fever, body aches and fatigue
  • You've recently had a urinary tract infection

Seek emergency care if you develop sudden, severe kidney pain, with or without blood in your urine. This could mean you have a problem with the blood circulation in your kidneys, such as a blood clot or hemorrhage, and it's important to have it evaluated right away.

May 05, 2014