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Old 04-28-2012, 01:03 PM   #1
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Is this typical gallbladder pain?

Over the course of this past year, I have been dealing with some unnerving and downright painful symptoms...I need to hear advice or opinions on what my issue is before I go nuts.

I have had three bouts of upper right quadrant pain in the typical gallbladder location. It was mostly an "ow" pain the first time I had it that lasted for a few days. I thought for sure it was gas, because the pain went away.

Two months down the road, I experienced pain in the same location with a higher intensity for a good solid two weeks off/on. The pain got worse at night, and this was the first time I felt a flutter pain that I think felt just as bad as a labor contraction (it only lasted 10 - 20 seconds at a time, but it was enough to get my attention). I finally scheduled a doctor's appointment - he thought it was my gallbladder and sent me for an u/s. I thought for sure this would find the cause but a week later my doc calls and says all is normal. I took the "all is normal" diagnosis and chalked up my pain to being overly in tune with my body and just "toughed it out" until it passed. After a few more days the pain was gone. I didn't think a thing about it until four months later when the pain plagued me again.

Which brings me to the present moment. I have had upper right quadrant pain just below my ribs for the last SEVEN WEEKS!!! When it first started I thought it was more gas pain so I just ignored it. Well all was fine and dandy until three weeks into this crazy "attack." The pain had intensified to a moderate to severe level which radiated into my back AND lower right side (it feels like gallbladder, kidney, and urinary pain), I developed nausea, lost my appetite, have trouble digesting, and rotate from diarrhea to constipation. I had finally had enough pain for one day (it was just before Easter and I was eating A LOT of eggs) and went to the ER. As soon as I got there I explained what was going on, what tests were previously done, etc. and an u/s and blood work was ordered - all came back normal. The only thing "wrong" with me was elevated bp 155/95, (my normal bp is 120/80) and given the circumstances... They gave me pain pills and sent me home with instructions to contact my doctor about getting a HIDA scan and what foods to avoid.

I had a HIDA scan done and the only issue during the scan was my small bowel didn't show up after the first 60 min. - it took another hour for it to show - and the tech kept asking the other nurse why my kidney showed up before everything else did. I have no idea if that means anything at all, but anything to get this mystery solved would be nice. I finally got the CCK injection and the results were NORMAL!! Talk about EXTREMELY frustrating!

The doctor gave me a referral for the surgeon, but obviously my gallbladder is NORMAL. Please, if you have ANY suggestions, advice, help, previous experience I am willing to listen. I don't want to keep visiting doctors and paying copious amounts of money to be found normal. Help, help, help!!

 
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Old 04-28-2012, 02:08 PM   #2
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Re: Is this typical gallbladder pain?

Call the doctor who has the results from the HIDA and ask for your EXACT score - not whether it was "normal." Anything below 35%or ABOVE 75% is considered non functioning. Many doctors don't know that too high a score is just as bad as too low. And eat no fat till you find out.

 
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Old 05-05-2012, 12:06 PM   #3
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Re: Is this typical gallbladder pain?

I am more or less giving an update on my "quest" for answers as the cause to my URQ pain (that has been radiating all over my stomach and back). Even though my tests were all normal - u/s of abdomen, hida scan, and blood work - the doctor said she wanted me to see the surgeon. I went ahead and made an appointment with him, which is a month down the road, but in the meantime I went and had an upper gi series xray test as originally suggested to be done after the HIDA. (I have a friend that thought she had gallbladder problems, went through all of the tests, but it turned out that she had a hernia diagnosed during an upper gi - I figured I'd give this shot.)

I go into the exam and I am happy to see that a radiologist will be there during the test and able to tell me results right away. Before starting he asked what my symptoms were and I proceeded to tell him - essentially upper right quadrant pain that has been strangely radiating to the lower right abdomen...I told him it felt like there was a little man in there knocking on my belly trying to get out. (To me it feels like kidney AND ovary AND flank pain all rolled into one. I have a right ovarian cyst which has been there a long time, but the pain doesn't feel the cyst pain I've had over the last five years and I didn't tell him that.) Before the official exam starts, the xray machine is already on me and he asks me to turn a bit. He immediately said it looked like there was a kidney stone there (he was talking to a tech) and commented on a shadow in my kidney. He didn't say anything further about the shadow on my kidney. The test proceeded and finished, which he said was normal and everything looked good. He left the room, of course I was relieved but still frustrated, and said hang out for a minute until he has a chance to review my films. Five minutes later the tech comes back in and says he needs to get one more xray. I went back up on the table and got one last xray - I believe it was of my right kidney area because the guy used my hip bone to "center" the image; at least I think that's what he was doing because before the exam he used my left rib to "center" pictures of my stomach.

Thinking about it, this is the second exam I've had done in the last two weeks where each of the people performing the tests have mentioned or asked about my right kidney - I hope there is an answer waiting for me on Monday. (The good thing about tests being scheduled on Friday is a three day work free weekend; the bad thing is awaiting test results.)

Well, I told the radiologist I felt like there was a little man hanging around in my right abdomen - he said if that alien was there he would find him. I hope and pray that he found him.

 
Old 05-05-2012, 01:18 PM   #4
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Re: Is this typical gallbladder pain?

So what was the HIDA score?

 
Old 05-06-2012, 10:19 AM   #5
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Re: Is this typical gallbladder pain?

Unfortunately, my doctor's office is really slacking when it comes to giving their patients exact information. I have called them a few times and left messages with my doctor's nurse, but the only call I got back was from the secretary, I am assuming, that said a copy of the report would be mailed to me. I called the medical center where the test was performed to see if I could get a copy of the results, which I can, as soon as I fill out and mail a consent form, which will then have them mail the results back to me. Mine as well wait to get my "free" report. Ugh...I figured I'd check the mail daily to see that report for myself.

The lesson I learned from all of this, I will be switching doctors. (I recently got a new job which pays for my insurance, thus I have to do the doctor shopping all over again. I chose this doctor on a whim because they were close to my house.) I will keep you posted. I am quite the pushy patient and this doctor can hate me all she wants, but it's my body and I know when something is not right. It's really sad that some doctors can just brush you off so quickly...it's like a factory.

 
Old 05-06-2012, 01:08 PM   #6
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Re: Is this typical gallbladder pain?

You have a right to copies of any test results so do not accept "no" for an answer. Standing your ground is just what you need to do. Your results may in fact be normal but you have a right to see that for yourself. You are correct that some doctors just run you. You have to work hard to find the good docs these days. I don't know if that's a reflection on them or the "business" of healthcare but when you have an issue that is difficult to resolve, the system can work against you at times. Good luck and keep us posted.

 
Old 05-07-2012, 01:32 AM   #7
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Re: Is this typical gallbladder pain?

I had gall bladder surgery a few years back. The pain was miserable and it felt like a stabbing pain around my waist to my back. The surgery was done laproscopicaly and I was back at work in 3 days. Very little pain and I have zero pain tolerance. See a good Gastrointerologist asap. I asked an er nurse, for my recomendation. Good luck to you.

 
Old 06-08-2012, 07:37 AM   #8
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Re: Is this typical gallbladder pain?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Titchou View Post
So what was the HIDA score?
I don't even know you, but your question has been echoing in my head all day long. So here is the final report: My ejection fraction is 96% - saw the surgeon today and he says it's normal and my gb does NOT need to come out. I'm not sure what to make of this, since I have read/heard differently from my research and speaking to those who have had the same issue.

Also, on my report it says the CCK was administered after the one hour mark, which in fact is NOT the way the test went. I called the testing center to inform them of their ERROR, and hopefully by the end of today I'll have some answers, which the attendant I spoke to seemed more than willing to comply. She implied that if in fact the test took two hours for "gut" imaging, they would have to change the report to abnormal. I have no idea what the delay in transit time to my small intestine might mean, but I do know if something terrible is going on with me and the radiologist or tech missed it I will be beyond rational. Argh! Talk about frustrating! I'll keep this thread updated.

 
Old 06-08-2012, 11:02 AM   #9
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Re: Is this typical gallbladder pain?

I doubt that something "terrible" is going on but I do understand your concern. Maybe you need a gastro to tell the surgeon it needs to come out?

 
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Old 06-08-2012, 11:15 AM   #10
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Re: Is this typical gallbladder pain?

I will try that - the surgeon referred me to the gastroenterologist on Monday. I'm keeping my fingers crossed. Thanks for all of your input!

 
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Old 06-15-2012, 11:17 PM   #11
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Re: Is this typical gallbladder pain?

Did you ever get any answers?

 
Old 06-16-2012, 09:55 PM   #12
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Re: Is this typical gallbladder pain?

Ah, FINALLY the mystery is solved - I have officially been diagnosed with nephrolithiasis with renal colic, or more simply put, KIDNEY STONES WITHIN THE KIDNEY. After months and months of thinking it was my gallbladder and trying everything possible to "fix" the pain, I was completely blown away by the dx.

I actually went to the er today because I was having pain and couldn't breathe. I assumed my gallbladder burst or I had a blood clot somewhere, and it was interfering with my breathing. I had the standard cardiac tests and the doc suggested another ultrasound just to check on my gallbladder. Well, the tech started the test and of course my gallbladder looked fine, but as soon as she moved the scanner to my front/side/back right rib, I yelped in pain. The tech saw the stones right away and told me I had a few stones hanging around in my kidney. I was shocked because it felt like it was my gallbladder the whole entire time. (I am obviously an idiot that hasn't a clue to basic human anatomy.) The doc said it explains all of the symptoms (minus my breathing trouble, which probably was a full blown panic attack from the intense pain) and sometimes stones within the kidney mimic gallbladder pain. I am guessing this has been missed in the past because it was assumed to be my gallbladder and techs were scrounging around like mad trying to find the "sick gallbladder."

I know when the stones pass I will be in a world of hurt (not unlike these last few months) but I am just so happy to finally have the problem discovered. Thank God for the answer! I guess I'm off to see the urologist next week, and now I can finally answer the question of what truly is more painful - labor or a kidney stone (or three) passing.

 
Old 06-18-2012, 02:09 PM   #13
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Re: Is this typical gallbladder pain?

And the official report reads: "There are several shadowing nonobstructing renal calyceal calculi; the largest one measuring 6 mm in diameter. YOWCH!!!

 
Old 06-26-2012, 07:28 PM   #14
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Re: Is this typical gallbladder pain?

Another update: So I went to the urologist and he point blank told me that kidney stones in the kidney do NOT cause pain unless they are obstructing the ureter - which mine are not. I am inclined to believe him, after all he is the "expert," so I have officially fired my old doctor and hired a new one.

The new guy seems to think it's the gallbladder even with all of the negative tests, and I hope to goodness I can find a surgeon to take this thing out of me. It seems no one in the medical community on my end of the spectrum believes in a too high gallbladder function (which mine is 96%). The new doctor wants to do a repeat HIDA Scan, among other things, which I think is just silly at this point.

This pain has been going on since mid March. It is DEFINITELY getting more intense by the day. If anyone lives in Northeastern Florida and can recommend a doctor that would be willing to yank this thing out of me, I greatly appreciate any information.

 
Old 07-20-2012, 02:34 PM   #15
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Re: Is this typical gallbladder pain?

Quote:
Originally Posted by em1lyd1ck1nson View Post
Another update: So I went to the urologist and he point blank told me that kidney stones in the kidney do NOT cause pain unless they are obstructing the ureter - which mine are not. I am inclined to believe him, after all he is the "expert," so I have officially fired my old doctor and hired a new one.

The new guy seems to think it's the gallbladder even with all of the negative tests, and I hope to goodness I can find a surgeon to take this thing out of me. It seems no one in the medical community on my end of the spectrum believes in a too high gallbladder function (which mine is 96%). The new doctor wants to do a repeat HIDA Scan, among other things, which I think is just silly at this point.

This pain has been going on since mid March. It is DEFINITELY getting more intense by the day. If anyone lives in Northeastern Florida and can recommend a doctor that would be willing to yank this thing out of me, I greatly appreciate any information.
You're not the only one in Florida looking for a doctor. I'm having trouble finding a surgeon. The nearest appointment I could get after my diagnosis was July 31 for the consultation.

 
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digestive disorder, gallbladder, kidney disorder, ruq pain



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