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Short of breath and pain in my back. Had gallbladder removed last week

(56 Posts)
Starshaker Wed 04-Dec-13 08:41:43

I'm in pain and feel short of breath/winded. It feels like I have an elephant sitting on my back. Going to the docs isn't exactly an option as I have 2 3 year olds off nursery with D&V and there is no way I can take them with me. Is this normal?

passedgo Wed 04-Dec-13 08:46:44

Not normal, call the doc and explain about dcs and they will get you in or arrange a home visit. It could be a serious infection.

Shazjack1 Wed 04-Dec-13 08:49:04

Why don't you give the gp a ring and speak to him over the phone if possible just to put your mind at rest.

Grokette Wed 04-Dec-13 09:09:49

Not normal. What painkillers are you taking if any? Codeine can cause sphincter of Oddi dysfunction after cholecystectomy, and it hurts like hell and feels very similar to gallbladder stones or inflammation.

ipswichwitch Wed 04-Dec-13 09:14:32

If you are short of breath and the pain is in your chest it could indicate a pulmonary embolism (blood clot in the lung) - which can be a complication post surgery.
You do need to get checked, and get it done today so ring the Gp, explain as well about the DC being ill and hopefully they will do a home visit

Jollyb Wed 04-Dec-13 09:14:40

I think you need to go to A&E . You have had recent surgery and so are at risk of developing a pulmonary embolism (blood clot on lung) which can cause these symptoms

DowntonTrout Wed 04-Dec-13 09:19:56

I too, would be worried about a blod clot. You must seek urgent medical advice. If you are alone with young children you should call someone to look after them straight away- your GP will want you to go to hospital to get checked.

purplewithred Wed 04-Dec-13 09:29:56

Urgent advice now.

I would phone the GP surgery now and explain the situation and ask to be seen today.

I am also thinking blood clot when I hear your symptoms. Hopefully it's nothing but it's really not worth taking the risk.

Starshaker Wed 04-Dec-13 09:35:15

I don't have anybody who can have them. Being sick is something only people with a support network can manage. Will see if I can get to the doctors later. Feeling a bit worried now though

StarShaker I really think you need to put yourself first here for the sake of your children.

Phone the doctors now and explain the situation. Is there nobody at all you can ask to watch your children for a short while?

It is better to get checked now than to run the risk of becoming seriously unwell.

Phone your GP now.

DowntonTrout Wed 04-Dec-13 10:04:39

starshaker I don't want to be alarmist, it could be any number of things, trapped wind, an infection, muscle cramps etc, but the worst scenario is a blood clot, and that is very serious. If it were a pulmonary embolism it could be life threatening.

So, for the sake of your DCs and yourself, you must get urgent medical attention now. Leaving it could mean you don't have chance to sort out someone to look after yourvDDs. Why not ring NHS direct if you don't want to go out now? Please do that at least.

Did you contact your GP StarShaker?

Starshaker Wed 04-Dec-13 15:00:24

I called and was told they couldn't do a house call and if I was feeling unwell I needed to come in to the surgery. I'm feeling a bit better. Still winded but with ought the feeling in my back. If I still feel unwell tomorrow I'll go down cos the twins will be in nursery

NCISaddict Wed 04-Dec-13 18:50:49

Did you tell them you were short of breath and had chest pain? That would normally trigger a 999 response certainly in my trusts area.

DowntonTrout Wed 04-Dec-13 18:58:14

Is someone in the house with you now? Do you have a partner/DH?

If so I would still call NHS direct with your symptoms. The breathlessness is worrying.

revivingshower Wed 04-Dec-13 20:16:47

Its bad they didn't do home visit. Hope you are ok now.

AnyFuckersfrogslegs35 Thu 05-Dec-13 08:54:12

I'm sadly not shock at your Gp's response.
It happened to me after my own cholecystectomy.
4 days post op I was very unwell and called my Gp - they knew I'd just had surgery but still forced me attend an appt. I took a taxi, didn't even make it into the examination room before before I collapsed on the floor.
Before I was rushed to hospital I did make sure I angrily asked 'is this severe enough to warrent a bloody house call?'
Anyway - my bile duct was damaged during the op but wasn't noticed and was causing pain, including what like you describe.
It could be similar (especially accompanied with yellow eyes/skin and vomitting bile) but could also be more serious, please get yourself checked asap.

Starshaker Thu 05-Dec-13 18:02:25

I got to the doc today and was told it's not normal but there isn't anything he can treat. Not sure what that means but he said if I start coughing stuff up or it gets worse I've to go back

nightcat Thu 05-Dec-13 18:37:00

after any surgery there could be a risk of blood clot, it's not worth taking a risk imo

Norem Thu 05-Dec-13 18:49:26

Starshaker your dr sounds like an idiot sorry.
You are complaining of not insignificant symptoms within a week of surgery. It could be a clot it could be an infection.
It might be something else entirely.
The point is that some of the above can be very serious and even fatal if not treated promptly.
Call the out of hours provision in your area and go tonight and be seen again.
If you can't be seen by them go to a and e.
Good luck.

Starshaker Thu 05-Dec-13 20:11:25

I feel like id be making a fuss. Im not in huge agony and im only breathless when i walk about or stand for a wee bit. The incisions have pretty much healed completely now too. I dont know what to do for the best. If i call out of hours or go to hospital i will need to find somebody to watch the kids which in turn will be putting somebody out. The id feel really bad and stupid for causing drama when there isnt any.

Jollyb Thu 05-Dec-13 21:07:51

Being breathless is not normal. You are not wasting anyone's time. I really think that you need to be checked out and this should be in a hospital where you can have the necessary tests.

Please call someone in to look after the kids and go to A&E. I'll take the blame.

passedgo Thu 05-Dec-13 21:38:37

Idiot doctors. Go to A&E - it's probably an infection which means there's some kind of fluid inside you, building up and causing a feeling of pressure. It could have spread to your lungs which explains being short of breath, or your heart is under such stress that you need more oxygen to cope with it.

If this infection gets into your bloodstream it could kill you.

Sorry to be alarmist, but this kind of thing can't wait IMO. I'm absolutely shocked that your GP didn't give you a decent dose of antibiotics. Even if you get them now they take time to take effect.

ChestyNutRoastingOnAnOpenFire Fri 06-Dec-13 00:05:29


Shortness of breath and back/chest pain coupled with recent surgery make alarm bells ring for a PE.

Untreated that would be a bigger inconvenience sad

DowntonTrout Fri 06-Dec-13 00:16:28

starshaker I have followed and commented on this since you first posted.

There is no easyvway to say this. If you leave this you could die. Who will look after your children then? Of course it could be nothing but do you really want to take hat risk? I mean that in the kindest possible way.

Leverette Fri 06-Dec-13 00:19:04

A&E please.

Call an ambulance and take the kids with you if there is no-one to help.

purplewithred Fri 06-Dec-13 00:49:06

What's your pulse like?

ipswichwitch Fri 06-Dec-13 09:21:13

Op please take note of what downtontrout has posted. Your Gp is an idiot - you can't diagnose a PE just by looking at you, and your symptoms plus the fact you are post surgery ring gigantic alarm bells for me - i do the scans that check for pulmonary embolism, you should have a blood test (d-dimer), chest X-ray and if that's clear a lung scan.

Better to inconvenience someone for a few hours to get yourself checked out than the alternative.

ipswichwitch Fri 06-Dec-13 09:25:47

Also, even if it is "just an infection" it needs treated. Simple infections can develop into something a whole hell of a lot worse.

LittleMissRed Fri 06-Dec-13 09:29:09

I came on to say exactly what Downtown said. It might sound harsh, but you need to be healthy and get better for your children. Go to A & E and get to the bottom of it.

Ledkr Fri 06-Dec-13 09:35:32

Op a few months ago another mumsnetter had these symptoms and I (an ex nurse) made her go to the drs where she was found to have a pulmonary embolism (clot in lung) which will definitely kill if left untreated.
After surgery you are susceptible to this so I really would say that you need to go to a and e kids In tow if necessary.
Death from this would be sudden and could be far more traumatic for your kids than a trio to the hospital.
Oh and change GPS too.

DowntonTrout Fri 06-Dec-13 09:46:50

My DD had her appendix out a few years ago.

A week later she was complaining of pain and couldn't stand up straight. We saw a GP who was quite dismissive, saying that he had been out playing tennis a week after his appendectomy. The wound had healed nicely, her temp was fine and he obviously felt she was swinging the lead.

He grudgingly took a urine sample. We got a call an hour later to go to hospital as there were raised levels of something or other in the sample. DD had infection and an internal abscess and I spent a week in hospital with her on Iv antibiotics. It took weeks and weeks to get over, much worse than the initial surgery. If we had left her much longer she would have developed septaceamia and that doesn't bear thinking about.

caketinrosie Fri 06-Dec-13 09:54:07

Starshaker ignore all scary posts ring the ward and speak to staff there. On your paperwork there will be a direct dial number. Any post op concerns should be investigated. Arrange a sitter just in case, I wouldn't feel a bit put out if a friend needed me, surely you would feel the same? You are as important as anyone else so give yourself a bit of tlc and get some medical advice. Hugs to you get well soon thanks

3littlefrogs Fri 06-Dec-13 09:55:58

As soon as I read your post Op I thought pulmonary embolus.

You need to go to A&E asap. Take the children with you if necessary.

Post operative PE can be fatal.

HansieMom Fri 06-Dec-13 18:55:34

Downtown, did that doc ever apologize to you and your DD? He certainly had a learning experience that day.

DowntonTrout Fri 06-Dec-13 20:13:56

No never, we were abroad at the time. Thank goodness for private health insurance- the hospital were fantastic.

Still, shows you can never be too careful, and even doctors get it wrong sometimes.

passedgo Sat 07-Dec-13 18:58:00

How I wish I never engaged with these medical emergency threads. I am worried about you OP. Please keep us posted.

Starshaker Sat 07-Dec-13 20:14:50

Sorry guys. I'm feeling a bit better. Didn't go back because I really didn't have anybody for the kids. I realised I really need to sort out arrangements in case I need something. I'm not breathless anymore and the pain has gone. Thank you all for the advice even though I couldn't take it

Starshaker Mon 09-Dec-13 11:28:09

Ok felt bad again so went to go this morning. I'm now in a&e waiting on an x-Ray.

notapizzaeater Mon 09-Dec-13 11:31:13

Hope it's all ok x

caketinrosie Mon 09-Dec-13 11:44:47

Ah star, Hope you find out the problem today. Get well soon, over here for handholding thanks

ChestyNutRoastingOnAnOpenFire Mon 09-Dec-13 12:42:27

Glad You've decided to get checked.

Good luck thanks

Starshaker Mon 09-Dec-13 19:27:53

They did the d-dimmer test and it came back positive. I'm getting stingy jags and being kept in. It's a good job I went back to the docs

notapizzaeater Mon 09-Dec-13 19:43:58

Best place for you to be. Hope u get better soon x

lougle Mon 09-Dec-13 19:51:24

Well done for going in. I hope you get better soon.

AnyFuckersfrogslegs35 Mon 09-Dec-13 20:19:17

Aww Star, sorry to hear you're still suffering but glad you're in the right place now.
Get well soon x

DowntonTrout Mon 09-Dec-13 20:25:10

Really glad you went back.

I was worried and kept checking to see if you'd posted again. Hope they manage to sort you out and that you're feeling better soon.

3littlefrogs Mon 09-Dec-13 20:48:00

Thank goodness you went to be checked.

Another one here who was worried.

Ledkr Mon 09-Dec-13 21:03:10

<wags finger> told you so!
I'm glad you went and are getting it sorted.
Get well soon

ipswichwitch Mon 09-Dec-13 21:34:50

Glad you've got sorted - I was concerned about PE given your symptoms. Take it the jabs are anti-coag (enoxaparin/heparin) - you may be on it a while. Hopefully you'll get home soon, and look after yourself (that's an order!)

3littlefrogs Mon 09-Dec-13 21:39:38

When you had your gall bladder op were you in hospital more than 24 hours?

If so, were you given injections in your tummy afterwards?

wonderingagain Tue 10-Dec-13 00:35:38

I'm not feeling so guilty about nagging you now!

Glad you are in safe hands. smile

Starshaker Tue 10-Dec-13 09:55:26

No when I had my op I was kept over night but that was all.

Starshaker Wed 11-Dec-13 14:17:25

Well I'll still in hospital. Had my scan today so now it's more waiting

wonderingagain Wed 11-Dec-13 14:49:07

Hope you are OK and have support smile

I take it you managed to get some childcare?

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