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    Old 12-03-2005, 07:58 AM   #1
    scottv
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    Question Gall Bladder surgery

    1st a little history. I have gerd/acid reflux and I am on Nexium and that controls the acid reflux pretty good. But I was also having some other problems with my stomach. The symptoms being some minor progressive bloating during the day and some minor discomfort and the the occasional severe pain between the shoulders. Other times I would waking up in the middle of the night with severe bloating and reflux so bad even sitting up in a chair wouldn't help. What ever was creeping back up my esophagus was the nastiest tasting stuff you could imagine. During those times my last ditch efforts of either Rolaids or pepto bismol wouldn't have the slightest affect, the only relief at all would be to make my self throw up to relieve some of the pressure. I would be so sick after an attack like that I would be so sick the next day work was pretty much out the question.

    This has been happening on a occasional basis about every couple months until a couple weeks ago I had three attacks like that in 9 days. So I figure there has to be something more than just normal reflux going on here. So I go and visit the Doc and he is concerned about possible gall stones and sends me off to get an ultra sound. Sure enough there is something there that doesn't belong there. The Radiologist says there is medium sized polyp on the gall bladder, so I am sent off to chat with a surgeon. After looking at the ultra sound he says it is either polyp, hopefully benign or a stone (the techs in ultra sound said I was not echo friendly ). He also mentioned that although rare gall bladder cancer wasa possiblity and a very nasty thing to have. There is a bit of cancer history in my family.

    Ok so at this point I am convinced that it should probably come out. All scheduled to have the gall bladder remove this Monday and laparoscopy will be the procedure. He told me to expect some diarrhea for a couple weeks and the I should be back up to speed and feeling well in no time.

    I did do some research on this before making the decision and feel that I made the right one, mainly because I am overall pretty healthy now and that would probably be the best time to surgery done.

    Anyone that has had this procedure care share what I really should expect? I am guessing I should probably stay away from fatty foods for a while at least, but I have also been told I should be able to eat normally after 3 or 4 weeks. Is this pretty much factual?

    Sorry for the long post, I guess I am a little verbose.

     
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    Old 12-03-2005, 11:44 AM   #2
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    Re: Gall Bladder surgery

    Well, everyone is different but I would stay off the fatty stuff for a least a month and then start adding back in slowly. That's what I did. FOr some reason after about 4 months, I had spell for several weeks where the most odd things gave me diarrhea but then it just quit on its own and no problems since. I had mine out in February. Doc sid it just happens that way sometimes and not to worry. So I didn't and now things are fine. I did find that there is one salad (that I LOVED!) at one restaurant that I just can't eat any more...and I probably don't need to because it's loaded with stuff that's bad for you! The surgery for me was pretty easy. I had it on Monday, worked 1/2 day on Wednesday and then all day Thursday and Friday. Jogged two mile the folowing Monday...but I jog all the time amyway. Stayed out of the gym for about 3 weeks or so. The first two days were hard because I kept wanting to straighten up...not a good thing to do! And you'll probably need to wear loose fitting pants for a week or so as the holes at the belly button and right above will be tender. And the one under your breastbone...don't cross your arms for a while either! Good luck!

     
    Old 12-03-2005, 01:27 PM   #3
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    Re: Gall Bladder surgery

    My surgery was scheduled for 1:00. I got to the hospital at 11:00 and checked in. Then they take your blood pressure and pulse and ask you all kinds of questions, then have you change into the hospital gown. Then they come in and start an IV, and the anesthesiologist and surgeon will come by to make sure you don't have any questions or concerns. I was feeling nauseated, so I told the anesthesiologist and she gave me some meds for that. I was also worried about feeling sick when I woke up, so she promised to give me some meds throughout the surgery and before I went into recovery.

    They do have to insert a breathing tube, but they do that after you go to sleep and take it out before you wake up. That's because they inflate your abdomen with gas, which makes it hard for you to breathe on your own. But the anesthesiologist's only job is to take care of your breathing and heart rate and medications, so you will be well taken care of.

    The surgery took 45 minutes. I woke up in the recovery room around 3:00. I was in pain, so I got some drugs through the IV. The nurse checked my incisions, and then my mom came in. Here is a key thing: They gave me some pain PILLS at that point, with some juice and graham crackers. Before the pills kicked in, the pain came back and I got another shot through the IV. But by the time that shot wore off, the pills had kicked in. Be sure that you get pills and that the pain is under control from the pills before you leave. And then take the pills on schedule, before the pain gets bad. If you let the pain get bad, it will be harder to get it under control with the pills.

    So then I went home and I was on my couch by 5:00 (just 4 hours after surgery). The first day I didn't feel too bad, because I still had all the anesthesia drugs in my system. I think the third day was the worst in terms of pain. I actually felt okay the second day, and I stayed awake all day and actually went over to somebody's house and visited with them for a few hours. The third day was the worst, because I overdid it the second day. So I just laid around and took my pills, which made me sleep a lot. The pain wasn't really sharp, just the feeling that I had been run over by a semi truck or stabbed multiple times in the abdomen (which really wasn't too far from the truth!). I had some pain from the incisions, but I found that ice helped that (a bag of frozen peas works well). But even with the surgical pain, I could tell that the pain I had been feeling from my gallbladder was gone.

    I had my surgery on a Thursday, and I went to one class on Monday. By the next Thursday, I was able to teach and go to some classes, but I was still in some pain and tired. By two weeks I felt pretty good, and by a month I was pretty much back to normal.

    You will want to try to get up and walk a bit each day (as much as you feel like) because it will help speed up your recovery. The first day I went for one very short walk (down to the mailbox and back). The second day I walked twice. After that, I started doing some longer walks (around the block) two or three times a day. Just whatever feels okay. You might not be able to walk far at first. I went to the store with my mom the second day, but I used the little electric cart because I was tired and walking was slow because of the pain.

    And stay away from fatty foods. Your digestive system will need to adjust to fats, since the gallbladder is used in digesting fats, so you will want to introduce them slowly to avoid major diarrhea. The first week I didn't really eat anything with much fat (I mostly ate soup, salad, toast, graham crackers, etc.). I slowly added it in.

    Also, you'll want to have some nice comfy pants to wear, and some that look decent. I couldn't wear pants for nearly a month, because although I wasn't really in much pain, the incisions were still tender, and the one at the bellybutton hurt when I wore jeans.

    I think my biggest problem in the whole recovery was just that I was bored and crabby. There wasn't anything on TV, and I was tired but not sleepy, and I wanted to get up and do something but I couldn't, and I wanted something to occupy myself but I didn't feel like doing anything. Word puzzles, a silly novel, or other stuff you can do while laying on your back are a must. I tried to do a jigsaw puzzle one day, but sitting up and leaning over hurt. So prepare some activities that you can do in any position. But nothing too funny, because it hurts to laugh.

    So no worries. Unless you have some reaction to the anesthesia (very rare) or they end up doing the open surgery (also very rare) you will be going home the same day, and you will be fine. You will be much more comfortable at home, anyway. You will be up and around in a week, feeling pretty good in two weeks, and pretty much back to normal in a month. I have had other surgery, and I would rather have my gallbladder out 20 times than have my ankle surgery again. It's scary, but it really isn't a big deal (once it's over with, and it's somebody else that's having it!). Just try to relax. :-) Oh, and if you're into that sort of thing, your doctor will probably take pictures for you and print off a copy, if you want a souvenier.

     
    Old 02-12-2006, 02:54 PM   #4
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    Re: Gall Bladder surgery

    I am having my gall bladder out on Friday and I also have a 5 month old. I was wondering what weight lifting restrictions you were given when you had yours out. I am beginning to get nervous about it because of taking care of my kids. I would really appreciate any information I can get!

     
    Old 02-12-2006, 04:33 PM   #5
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    Re: Gall Bladder surgery

    I had mine out almost a year ago and at the time I had an 8 month old. I was told I could not lift anything heavy--him included for 6 weeks and that I should have someone with me the first few days. I did lift him within that 6 weeks and paid for it dearly. I had major abdomen pain and could barely move the next day. I suggest you have someone with you to help with the little one.

    Good Luck!

     
    Old 02-12-2006, 04:35 PM   #6
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    Re: Gall Bladder surgery

    Which surgery did you have? I am nursing and don't have family here in town. My mom will be here for 2 days after my surgery and my husband has to work some. I also have a 3 year old. Did they tell you a specific weight limit?

     
    Old 02-12-2006, 08:11 PM   #7
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    Re: Gall Bladder surgery

    I had laparoscopic(sp?) surgery. I also had 2 other children to look after as well, but luckily they were old enough to walk on there own without having to carry them. I think my dr. said I wasn't to lift anything over 10 lbs.

     
    Old 02-13-2006, 09:03 AM   #8
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    Re: Gall Bladder surgery

    Thank you so much for the information.

     
    Old 02-14-2006, 01:01 PM   #9
    extremesboo
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    Re: Gall Bladder surgery

    i had my gallbladder out nov 7th 2005, i had the pain like a pulled muscle underneath where i was cut like where the gallbladder was , dr said it was def just pulled muscle from moving around and not being completely healed, but now feb 14,2006 i get a call from a catscan i had last week to check on an enlarged lymph node near my heart that they also found fluid build up where my gallbladder was, then say i need to have another catscan in 6mths, i asked about the fluid and dint really get a response just that if it was serious my dr would talk to me, well hello fluid build up is serious to me if it shouldnt be there.....has anyone else had this fluid build up after surgery???????

     
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