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Old 11-19-2012, 04:10 PM   #1
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Gallbladder symptoms without stones?

Hi, this is my first post and I just need some help and some reassurance that I'm not crazy!!
I'm a 27 year old single mom who has been having URQ pain for almost a year now, specifically under my ribs on the right side. It feels like something in there is swollen. It's not ALWAYS painful but it is always uncomfortable. I've had awful acid reflux that I have been prescribed Prilosec for and it does seem to be helping with the reflux, but the pain and discomfort is always present. The pain also manifests in my back on the right side most of the time along WITH the pain in front, and sometimes I even get pain on the left side also.
I've been dealing with this, mainly because of two things; 1) i've had so many CT scans and ultrasounds that show no stones or blockages that I can't even count them on fingers and toes anymore and 2) all my labs come back normal too and now that the reflux is under control, they're all, "Oh well you should be fine now.." except I'm NOT.
My doctor said that next time I had an acute attack I was to go directly to the ER and tell them I need a HIDA scan and not to leave until I get one. So, a little over a week ago, I woke up in so much pain I couldn't breathe and I toughed it out for a while until a visit to my GYN for an unrelated problem, when the doctor said, "Would you either go to the ER or call your gastro because I have never seen someone in so much pain in my life and I see laboring women all the time."
Well I went to the ER, and they tell me they can't to a HIDA scan through the ER and they send me for ANOTHER ultrasound and of course, they see nothing, so they gave me morphine and sent me home. I haven't had another severely acute attack since then but I've had awful indigestion almost every day since and today I'm having terrible diarrhea, and even changing my diet has not helped at all, it doesn't matter what I eat, I feel awful after I eat ANYTHING.
My doc IS sending me for a HIDA scan but it hasn't been scheduled yet and I'm starting to wonder how the heck long i can handle this. I'm SURE it's my gallbladder because my mother and her sister both had their gallbladders removed (mom had stones, and aunt had gallbladder disease, which is what i think I have..) and because these symptoms seem to fit...I think.
But my doctor is all, "I don't think the HIDA scan is going to show us anything, you're too young for your gallbladder to be diseased."
Please. Someone tell me that I'm not crazy because I'm starting to think I am since nobody believes me and things just seem to be getting WORSE, not BETTER and I'm a single mother, I can't be in this much pain all the time.

 
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Old 11-19-2012, 04:58 PM   #2
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Re: Gallbladder symptoms without stones?

SOunds like it is your gallbladder. Eat NO FAT until you get this resolved. I know that is going to be hard with Thanksgiving and Christmas coming but I was in the same boat!
Be sure and stay off the fat for 2-3 weeks after surgery and then slowly start eating it again. This means no eggs, no cheese (unless non fat), same for milk, salad dressing,e tc.

 
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Old 11-19-2012, 06:11 PM   #3
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Re: Gallbladder symptoms without stones?

Your symptoms are pretty much the classic ones for gallbladder disease, this along with your family history and the fact that you are a mother means that you are definitely on the right track.

You probably have "sludge" in your gallbladder. These are small micrcrystals, with the consistency of sand--except with sharp edges, they will eventually form into stones. So imagine your gallbladder as a small sack, filled with sand trying to squeeze out bile to help digest fat and being irritated each time it tries to squeeze. The ultrasound is not very effective at seeing sludge, though I had a tech tell me the other day that the ultrasound machines are getting better.

Keep pushing for answers, don't let them make you think it's in your head.

 
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Old 11-20-2012, 11:57 AM   #4
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Talking Re: Gallbladder symptoms without stones?

Thank you both...
I just got the call today that I go for the HIDA scan on Monday. Considering this is a holiday weekend, I'm glad that it's so fast.
I'm just so afraid that the scan won't show anything and I end up with no answers. Can either of you tell me what kind of time frame I'm looking at for results and what the 'threshold' is for them to tell me function is good versus when function is so low they take the gallbladder out? I know I should ask my doctor, but he is sometimes hard to get a hold of and you guys seem much more supportive than most health care professionals out there.
Thank you again, so much... you did help ease my mind a lot :-)

 
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Old 11-20-2012, 12:29 PM   #5
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Re: Gallbladder symptoms without stones?

They won't tell you when you take the test and facilities and doctors vary. A few days at the most would be my guess. A score below 35% is considered grounds for removal. Above 75% is also but not all doctors agree on this one.

 
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Old 11-22-2012, 04:46 PM   #6
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Re: Gallbladder symptoms without stones?

Thank you so much.
I'm curious, though, reading other posts on this board, people are saying that on other imaging tests they've had done (like ultrasounds or CT Scans, all of which I have had) have shown sludge even with no stones. With all my symptoms and all my imaging, I have no stones and none of the tests have shown sludge either. I have my HIDA scan scheduled for Monday and I'm concerned that even though I have pain and other symptoms that truly interfere with my day to day life, that the scan won't give my doctor enough of a reason to remove the gallbladder. (I am very in tune with my body and I am SURE that I have gallbladder disease, it's just a matter of getting someone to believe it too.) Even after being pretty careful with what I ate today, I am still experiencing major discomfort.
I know I can't control the outcome, but I'm really scared that I'm going to go through all of this testing for nothing and end up dealing with this again much farther down the line when it could be taken care of now.
I hope you have had a wonderful holiday (if you're celebrating) and thank you again for all your helpful info so far!!

Last edited by Ldeppect08; 11-22-2012 at 04:49 PM.

 
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Old 06-25-2013, 07:30 AM   #7
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Re: Gallbladder symptoms without stones?

Hiya,
I was just wondering if you had any luck with ur hida scan as I had an ultrasound yesterday, which apparently showed no stones but I have to wait until my doctor has received the report to talk about it property.
I have every gallbladder symptom so am very fed up that I still have no answers.

 
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