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    Old 02-09-2004, 05:50 PM   #1
    Tina71975's Avatar
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    Questions about GallBladder Surgery?

    Hi I am new here. My name is Tina and I am 28 yrs old, married and have 2 wonderful children ages 4 1/2 and 1 1/2. I have just recently had 2 attacks with my gallbladder in the last couple of weeks. I went to the ER in the middle of the night for the second one because I had never had pain like that before and it was horrible. The ER doctor had me get an ultrasound the following Tuesday for my gallbladder and they said it was full of stones. I just went today and saw the surgeon and set up my surgery date for March 11th. My problem is.....I am scared crapless I have only been in the hospital to have my kids and that is it. No surgeries or anything so I am scared to death. I have been doing a lot of research on gallbladders and surgery on the internet and that is how I ran across these boards. I was hoping that someone could help ease my fears. If anyone has had this surgery could you please tell me how it went and how your recovery was. I am so scared and now I have a month to think about it and just hope I don't have any further attacks!!!



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    Old 02-10-2004, 07:39 AM   #2
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    Re: Questions about GallBladder Surgery?


    You've nothing to worry about at all, but I was worried before mine as well. I had it done two weeks ago. I went into hospital the day before, don't know why really and then was done at 9.30am the next morning. Brought down to theatre and knew nothing else until I woke up at 10.45am in the recovery room. My tummy especially around my belly button was a bit sore, but not agony at all, hurt to laugh and that sort of thing, but you'll get painkillers for that. I felt a bit drowsey all day, because of the painkillers, then the next day I felt fine, still the pain, but nothing you can't handle. Got out of hospital that day and realised my tummy was bruised and swollen when I tried to put the trouers back on that I'd been wearing before on. Went home and sat on the couch and got spoilt for a few days. I had the surgery on the Monday and by the Saturday, I was feeling much much better, just a little sore at that stage, but didn't take a painkiller since the Friday. So all in all it was very easy and if I had to get it done again (which I won't) I wouldn't be half as nervous now as I was then.

    Like I said that was two weeks ago yesterday and I'm fine except for small pains in my side when I walk which I'm going to the doctor about tonight, I'll let you know how I get on.

    But if you've any questions at all, you can ask me and I hope I'll be able to help you.

    Don't be worrying


    Old 02-10-2004, 11:34 AM   #3
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    Re: Questions about GallBladder Surgery?

    I can totally sympathize with you about being scared. But let me assure you there is nothing to worry about. I only had a day and a half notice and was scared to death! I had mine done at 930 am and woke up at 1045 am in the recovery room. I did have pain in my shoulders and neck from the gas. It was sore to move around and to laugh. They will give you painkillers for the pain. It is sore. I think I took painkillers for 3 days and then none after that. I felt much better by the third day. And by day 10 I felt very good. I know how you feel. I have a 3 year old daughter and I have never had any surgery before either. They will have four gauze bandages on your incision sites and you can take them off within two days. You get to have pudding and light liquids for the first couple days. Then add more solids into your diet. You might feel a little nausea from the anesthetic but that is normal. You will be fine. Make sure you talk to your surgeon about any fears and questions you may have. I had a non functioning gallbladder and after 10 years of wondering what was causing the pain they finally figured it out. Anyways, if you can have someone there with you for the first few days it would be very helpful. And I know having kids, all they want to do is crawl all over you
    Hope this has been helpful. If you have any other questions, let me know. Really, there is nothing to worry about. Worrying just makes things bigger than they actually are. Take care. *hugs*

    Last edited by moderator4; 02-11-2004 at 12:27 PM.

    Old 02-11-2004, 07:03 AM   #4
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    Re: Questions about GallBladder Surgery?

    Don't worry about it. It was my first surgery ever. I just had it on Friday. On Sunday I was already feeling better. By Monday I was basically fine with minor pain and movement issues. What killed me the most was the vicatin (sp). I was OK while I was on it, but I tell ya what, at exactly 4 hours when it wore off.. the pain wasn't bad, the head rush and other withdrawl symptoms were just awful. I think it was good to have the extra painkiller punch for the 48 hours. After that I just had to switch to extra strength Tylenol. No more narcotic withdrawl, and it was more than enough for the pain which went away fairly quickly for me.

    I went into surgery at noon. They gave me the anaestetic and a memory blocker. I remember moving myself onto the operation table. That's it. The next thing I remember was waking up with a dry heave type cough and in considerable pain in my abdomen. But I was still so out of it that I just remember "this sucks really bad I just need to lay here and hopefully it will go away." After awhile they asked if I felt up to going out of the watching area and back to an area to see family. I didn't really want to freak them out, but I decided they'd feel better seeing me. I was told later the surgery lasted exactly an hour, the surgeon had come out to tell my family every went smoothly. Then it was about another hour before I woke up and agreed to get wheeled out to another area.

    I was still in pain but they wouldn't give me the vicatin until I could get down about half of a graham cracker. They had also given me something to dry out my mucus in my mouth.. so my throat was dry and kinda sore (dry throat plus a tube that they put down it.. I don't remember this, it's just what I was told). I was sucking down water like crazy and the nurse was worried I'd get more nauseous but I couldn't swallow those dry crackers without any lubrication! Finally I got just enough of them down for the pain meds to be given. I started feeling better in another 30-45 minutes, enough to leave.

    One hint that was invaluable.. before moving, take a deep breath. Then exhale as you begin moving. It was the only way I could move around for the first couple days, even just to sit on the toilet. Exhale then start moving. If you empty, stop moving, deep breath, exhale again and resume. That will make life much better.

    I've heard it's about 60% that you will feel well enough to go home the same day. It's also only about 5-10% chance that they won't be able to do the lapro and they will have to open you up which means more hospital time and pain I assume. They told me they do plan for people to leave the same day, but if I wasn't up to it I could definitely stay. Unless the surgery was late afternoon, I just can't imagine not being able to leave the same day.

    Eating was hard for me after just because I didn't want to move around or do anything that might hurt. Plus, the vicatin killed my appetite and made me constipated on top of it. All around, the pain meds were the worst. Once I got off those, I was able to eat normally. I took a fiber pill worried about the constipation (i.e. am I clogged??) and once the vicatin stopped holding things back I had a good movement. Then the normal diarhea within an hour but it didn't last long.

    I was already used to the diarhea because I think my GB has been bad for a long time. It just hasn't been working so the bile has already been slowly dripping in. In fact, that could be causing my colon to be irritated and may explain why removal hasn't stopped my symptoms from coming back. You take something out that wasn't doing anything in the first place.. it's no guarantee that it will help but other than the surgery it doesn't hurt to try.

    Good luck!

    Old 02-11-2004, 09:58 AM   #5
    Katie G
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    Smile Re: Questions about GallBladder Surgery?

    Hi Tina - everybody here has already said what I'm going to say and that is....the surgery is no big deal. The post-op pain was the worst part of it. I returned to work within a week, and although I felt fatigued for up to a month after surgery, I resumed all activities. I had my surgery in 1997 done laproscopically and it lasted about 45-50 minutes. I didn't have stones, but a severely inflamed gall bladder. I don't miss it a bit - I had been suffering for almost a year before it was finally removed.

    The only downfall is now I have bile salt diarrhea because of the removal - only 5% of GB patients get this. However, I have great control with a medication called Colestid.

    Good luck to you and keep us posted on your outcome,
    Katie G

    Last edited by moderator4; 02-11-2004 at 12:29 PM.

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