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Old 07-07-2008, 10:09 AM   #16
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Re: Life after gall bladder removal - pros and cons

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Originally Posted by nikkilewis View Post
Just wondering how you're doing now? Are you still getting the backaches? I had mine out on 6/24/08, and made the mistake of eating something fatty, which made me have the back pains. They weren't as severe as pre-surgery, but it was enough to get my attention.
they seem to be getting better - but I notice it more if I sit after I eat. seems the full stomach tends to cause the pressure that translates to the back pain. more at the lower lh shoulder blade. xrays showed nothing.

 
Old 07-09-2008, 02:15 PM   #17
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Re: Life after gall bladder removal - pros and cons

Hi, found this post and thought I'd share my story....

I am recovering from having my gall bladder removed on June 25th. I had no stones. Hida Scan 16%. Ultrasound showed thickening of the gall bladder walls. My surgeon advised me that removal may not cure my symptoms, which were at the point of debilitating (couldn't eat anything without nausea and explosive bile diarrhea and extreme stabbing pain under my right rib cage and under my right shoulder blade or I would go for days with constipation and cramps) so I decided to have it taken out.

Other than the gall problems prior to surgery I am in good health though I am skinny and have always had a voracious appetite and totally unrestricted diet, eating everything and anything all the time. Gall disease runs on both sides of my family so I imagine I was predisposed to problems and my diet didn't help.

So its been two weeks of ups and downs. It took me about a week to get my appetite back after the surgery and it now seems to be decreased. I had a lot of abdominal pain the first week and stayed pretty doped up on pain killers. I ate low fat, high fiber the first week (when I did eat) with no bowel problems other than some pain in my lower right back and a few muscle spasms just to the left of my middle incision, just under my rib cage.

Had my follow up appointment with the surgeon 2 days ago. The back pain is normal, body's compensation for the punctures in the right abdomen. The muscle spasms, which remain pretty persistent, may be nerve damage from the incisions and never go away. That's a bummer.

I'm able to manage pain with ibuprofen now and am done with the narcotics.

This week I decided to go back to my uninhibited diet. I have had a few issues with diarrhea, usually very soon after lunch, but no abdominal pain or nausea or anything even close to what food would do to me prior to surgery. Last night's curry chicken was a mistake. I had 3 rounds of D starting at noon today. So I think I will have to go back to the low fat diet, although i have eaten fried halibut and prime rib with no repercussions. Had 2 cups of coffee this morning with cream... that may have gotten things started.

So I'm going into week three. I don't regret my choice to have my gall bladder removed. I do regret not having health insurance. I'm still a little too weak to go back to work (fishing guide, drift boat, very physical) but am going to try to get back in my boat on the 15th.

I can't count the hours of reading and research I did on boards like this leading up to my decision to have surgery, It's good to get input from other people's perspectives. I hope my story helps someone and I look forward to any advise or replies.

good luck

 
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Old 07-09-2008, 08:31 PM   #18
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Re: Life after gall bladder removal - pros and cons

Dang, I could've almost written your post! Sounds so much like me, for the most part.

Curry chicken? Wow, that sounds so good! I swore I would wait until I was 1 month post-op before I'd start trying regular foods, but I did try some today - WITH success!!! I ate 3/4 of a slice of pepperoni pizza (with extra cheese), and it didn't bother me one bit. The last time I tried that, I had problems (back pains). So I'm pretty excited! I'm still not going to go crazy and just start eating any and everything. But, this is very promising. I can't wait to eat normal again, and I really believe I'll be able to - especially after today.

Good luck with your recovery. I hope you're able to return to your regular diet soon!

 
Old 07-11-2008, 02:06 AM   #19
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Re: Life after gall bladder removal - pros and cons

My goodness, I should have had my head examined before cooking a dish with coconut oil. 50% saturated fat! My mistake and I paid dearly for 2 days.

I am back to no fat diet after that experience. Doc prescribed Questran (sp?) for the past two days of dumping, but i feel if i keep off the fats all will be good.

Thanks for the reply NIKKI, how have things been going? I think we had our op on the same day.

Good luck and hope all is well

 
Old 07-13-2008, 07:02 AM   #20
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Re: Life after gall bladder removal - pros and cons

Well here is my gb story, I have had pancreatitis for 19years, I am 38 year old female, I have been resisting having my gall bladder removed for about 10 years because none of the test show anything wrong with it, I guess it is just something the dr's like to eliminate for pancreatitis. I had an EUS and a MRCP done in jan or feb, no stones showed there was possibly some sludge, so I had the gb removed via lap on 6-18-2008, well I don't have diahrea, but everything else is worse, pain, labs (amalyse,lipase, liver functions) so now they say I have SOD type I, was supposed to have an ERCP last Friday, but dr. had scheduling issues, so now I get to wait till 7-30, I hope you have better luck, oh yeah the gb was normal for all test after removal.

 
Old 07-13-2008, 08:43 AM   #21
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Re: Life after gall bladder removal - pros and cons

JB,
I am the same age as you and live on the other side of Omaha. Same results from GB removal: no relief and now upper left side pain and increased nausea. I've recently had a few bouts of diarrhea, which is odd for me. My GI won't even see me until August! Tests are coming back normal, although no one has checked my liver/pancreatic enzymes since the surgery in Nov 07. I am now looking at Creighton and Nebraska Medical Center for help.

Good luck to you.

 
Old 07-13-2008, 09:09 AM   #22
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Re: Life after gall bladder removal - pros and cons

Hey Zoegirl,
I live in Lincoln, but I see Dr. Hutchins at the Neb med center in Omaha, trained with some great Dr's I guess. He wanted me to go to Dr. Freeman in MN. But I can not afford the trip, so we are doing what we can here. The worst is he is so busy, only one day a week seeing patients, the rest is spent doing procedures. But a least that means he has a lot of practice.

 
Old 07-14-2008, 09:38 PM   #23
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Re: Life after gall bladder removal - pros and cons

Quote:
Originally Posted by alaskanb View Post
My goodness, I should have had my head examined before cooking a dish with coconut oil. 50% saturated fat! My mistake and I paid dearly for 2 days.

I am back to no fat diet after that experience. Doc prescribed Questran (sp?) for the past two days of dumping, but i feel if i keep off the fats all will be good.

Thanks for the reply NIKKI, how have things been going? I think we had our op on the same day.

Good luck and hope all is well
I'm actually getting much better. I've been trying foods w/fat in it w/o any problems, for the most part. I actually had a cheeseburger and fries from Burger King today, and had NO ill effects at ALL. The only thing that's bothered me is some southern-style barbeque. I had a mild phantom GB attack from that, but it wasn't a big deal. I'll just wait a few weeks before I try that again. So, all in all, I cannot complain. I've had diarrhea only a couple of times, so that's another good thing. At the rate I'm going, I think I'll be back to my normal diet w/in another month or so.

How are you doing? Have you tried any new foods lately?

PS - Sorry for the delayed response. I had to help my mother move over the weekend, and what a chore that was!

 
Old 07-15-2008, 06:37 PM   #24
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Re: Life after gall bladder removal - pros and cons

Quote:
Originally Posted by nikkilewis View Post
I'm actually getting much better. I've been trying foods w/fat in it w/o any problems, for the most part. I actually had a cheeseburger and fries from Burger King today, and had NO ill effects at ALL. The only thing that's bothered me is some southern-style barbeque. I had a mild phantom GB attack from that, but it wasn't a big deal. I'll just wait a few weeks before I try that again. So, all in all, I cannot complain. I've had diarrhea only a couple of times, so that's another good thing. At the rate I'm going, I think I'll be back to my normal diet w/in another month or so.

How are you doing? Have you tried any new foods lately?

PS - Sorry for the delayed response. I had to help my mother move over the weekend, and what a chore that was!

thanks for writing back. I was curious how your recovery was going and good to hear you are doing fine. I'm not in too good of shape.

Everything was fine for the first two weeks until the episode with the curry, coconut milk. Seems like that opened the flood gates for D. Everything I ate after that, fat or no fat, sent me to the bathroom in a hurry. Four or five times even. I've been taking questran to help. I had eaten "normal food" my first week after surgery with no problems at all.. ??? I'm back to little or no fat in my diet now.

What worries me most is the development of abdominal pain I've been having. I'm not sure if I overdid it physically, or with the diet, too soon after the surgery. I know everyone heals differently from this procedure. I was thinking positive for a quick recovery, I'm only 33 and in pretty good shape.

Its seems strange that the first two weeks I felt fine and the past week has been problematic. I burp a lot, have the stabbing pain at the bottom of my rib cage on the right side and crazy muscle spasms around and under the top two incisions in my belly. Also the discomfort under the right shoulder blade is back, not severe like pre-op, but in the exact same location.

I've read a lot of gall removal recovery stories and some folks have these issues. I'm hoping very much these are healing pains rather than "get used to em' " pains.

I also tried something I think I shouldn't have.... I had four pints of beer Sunday night and I threw up like never before. I was never warned to avoid alcohol after the op but I sure will now.

I'm losing a bit of my optimism with these recovery symptoms. Do you have any pains or soreness at all? Have you consumed any alcohol since your surgery?

Thanks, hope your recovery keeps going well!

and anyone else with any advice please chime in.

 
Old 07-15-2008, 07:05 PM   #25
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Re: Life after gall bladder removal - pros and cons

I've been fortunate in that I've not had much diarrhea at all. I haven't had any weird pains, but everyone is different. I've had other surgeries and not recovered as well as other people have. It's different for everyone. You're still pretty early post-op (as am I). It may just be that you're taking longer to heal. I wouldn't give up hope at this point. You're only 3 weeks out from surgery, so keep the faith.

Did you have stones, and if so, did they check to make sure you didn't have any stones lodged in the bile duct? And when you get the pains in your shoulder, is it after you've had a "no-no" food, or does it happen no matter what you eat? When do you see your surgeon again for your post-op?

I don't drink, so no, I haven't consumed any alcohol. If and when you do decide to try alcohol again, try to drink a smaller amount (like maybe 1/2 a pint) and see how you tolerate it. If you tolerate it ok, try a whole pint next time, and so on.

Are you on anything like Nexium? Do you take Tums, or any other kind of OTC antacid? You might want to try that to help with the burping. I take Nexium, but I haven't taken it today. I'm trying to see how I do w/o taking it.

 
Old 07-15-2008, 07:22 PM   #26
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Re: Life after gall bladder removal - pros and cons

thanks again for your response. No I didn't have stones. Just 16% ef on hida scan and thick gall bladder walls. Also had 2 small polyps in it. Pathology was normal. Surgeon didn't have any reason as to why the gall bladder went bad. He said he took a good look while he was in there and everything else (other organs) looked fine.

The pains have been pretty constant for the past week, with no relation to food. It just hurts pretty much all the time. Not severe pain, but a 3 to 5 out of 10. pre op was 9 to 10 out of 10.

I don't have another follow up with the doc. I was feeling so great last time I saw him (july 7th). He told me to go back to normal physical activity when I felt ready. Things got tough for me about 3 days later. I'm going to call him in the morning and see if these symptoms are par for the course.

Last edited by alaskanb; 07-15-2008 at 07:23 PM. Reason: typo

 
Old 07-15-2008, 07:51 PM   #27
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Re: Life after gall bladder removal - pros and cons

Well, I do know that even though you may have FELT ok, it does take your body awhile to heal on the INSIDE. I've had one particular plastic surgery procedure done a few different times, and my first 2 recoveries were different from teh last one. With the first two, I FELT good so I got back to my regular activitites REALLY fast. That was a big no-no. The last time, I made sure I took it easy, and things went a lot smoother. Remember, when they did your surgery, they had to go thru the muscle, which takes time to repair. Even though they didn't have to cut a huge incision in it (since you had it done laproscopically, I assume), you STILL have a little damage that takes some time to heal. A PULLED muscle takes some time to heal, so when you have a hole (puncture) or a TINY incision, it can still cause excessive soreness if you overdo it. I've had this happen, and I don't see how GB surgery would be much different. Muscle is muscle. I would take it easy for a few days and see if that helps.

On another note, I've read a few stories of the clips coming "off" (the clips used on the bild duct). This seems to be a rare thing, but it CAN happen. So, if you keep having this pain, you might mention this to your doc. He may want to find out whether or not this has happened.

 
Old 09-22-2008, 09:22 AM   #28
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Re: Life after gall bladder removal - pros and cons

It is best to prepare your own food at home - if you get that book "Eat this Not that" you would super shocked what the restaurants put in your food and the amount of fat in your food as well. Same thing with the grocery store - I go in for surgery tomorrow and have been diagnosed about a month ago I lost 40 lbs but I had to really read labels so I would not have attacks. A quizno salad with dressing 43 grams of fat. A salad at california pizza 35 grams of fat. Chinese food out of the question. They are trying to kill us at these restaurants and no wonder we are at the hospitals with diseases.

 
Old 09-22-2008, 02:26 PM   #29
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Re: Life after gall bladder removal - pros and cons

gigi, you are right. No matter how healthy I try to eat when I eat out, I always feel better when I prepare my own meals at home. They must put a lot of extra things in the food in restaurants because I feel ill almost immediately after eating. That's even when I order things off the "healthy" menu. I've been eating certain things on a list my doctor gave me for the last few days and I've been feeling better. Of course it could be just a matter of time before things start getting worse no matter what I eat. I've been trying to hold off on the surgery. Let me know how you are feeling after yours.

 
Old 11-13-2008, 01:29 PM   #30
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Thumbs up Re: Life after gall bladder removal - pros and cons

Quote:
Originally Posted by nikkilewis View Post
Just wondering how you're doing now? Are you still getting the backaches? I had mine out on 6/24/08, and made the mistake of eating something fatty, which made me have the back pains. They weren't as severe as pre-surgery, but it was enough to get my attention.
Sorry for the long delay but this is not a regular site i log in too. The good news is that after almost 6 months I am back to normal - so to speak. If I over do it with certain foods I can still get the backaches but I have also been on Pantoprazol for the last 3 months first at 2 a day now down to 1 a day.

3 months ago I was so sure that something else was wrong with me after the surgery, I had lost 25 lbs so I went and had a upper GI scope. The results of the biopsies were negative but my stomach and esophogus were very red and irritated thus being put on the protoprazol.

Now if I eat too much in general or too much spicy foods I will get some discomfort but not like it was in the begining. So basically I save the Chinese Buffet for Friday's!

needless to say i've gained a few pounds back but when they say it can take up to a year to return to normal it is probably correct. I just wish they had better tracking of symptoms afterwards so the could have given me a little better insight into how I would feel. Most people I talked to bounced back within a month, I was longer.

Hope that helps some of you out there.

 
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