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To ask about gallstones

(22 Posts)
dontbesillyhenry Fri 10-Feb-17 09:58:47

I know they are fairly common you see.
Anyone who has gallstones suffer from severe heartburn/reflux or is this more likely to be from something else?

dontbesillyhenry Fri 10-Feb-17 10:09:33


Ledkr Fri 10-Feb-17 10:12:46

I didn't.
Gallstone pain is under the breast and into the back and mine was worse than having my 5 kids!!
It's a pain I cannot describe and came on at night and lasted about an hour.
If you have severe reflux and heartburn I'd see the gp as it can be a sign of an underlying issue.

Doodlebug5 Fri 10-Feb-17 10:18:03

Yes me! It was horrendous for weeks leading up to my gall bladder being removed. I still get it now but not nearly as bad as it was

PopcornBits Fri 10-Feb-17 10:33:10

Yes reflux/heartburn is a common side effect of gallstones.

I had a gnawing pain in the middle of my stomach just below my sternum, it would happen even if I didn't eat and sometimes it really hurt. That didn't seem to a common side effect apparently but it definitely was from that as I've had it removed and I don't get it anymore.

PopcornBits Fri 10-Feb-17 10:34:44

Ledkr that's bilary colic and just one of many symptoms. Heartburn is very common in gallstones it can be painful.

cartismandua Fri 10-Feb-17 10:58:15

Yes, IME you will get pain from the region of the gall bladder and pancreas. It can manifest differently in people, I used to get shoulder pain from it as well. The only cure for the pain is to have the gall bladder and the stones removed. I had keyhole surgery and was home the same evening.

Beware, however there is a syndrome that you can research online which describes the condition that I, like others have where the taking of codeine and other opiate-based meds can cause severe cramping in the region of the pancreas and where the gall bladder was. 'Post-cholecistectomy cramp' I think its called. I take copies the research articles to show doctors etc. when I want to get painkillers prescribed. Worth knowing, I think. HTH.

BarbarianMum Fri 10-Feb-17 11:20:23

Popcorn that's really interesting. That's exactly the symptom I have and I'm being investigated for gallstones at the moment. I have Crohns disease so everything was put down to that for years but recently this pain is happening more and more often so I've been sent for an ultrasound.

Cherrycokehead Fri 10-Feb-17 12:05:19

cartismandua I had my gallbladder out two months ago and did not know that about opiates! Thanks for the info

TheWildRumpyPumpus Fri 10-Feb-17 12:13:17

Yes I can't take codeine since having my gallbladder removed, it brings on the same type of pains I used to get from the gallstones.

I didn't get reflux but the pain was improved by chugging large glasses of water.

Trufflethewuffle Fri 10-Feb-17 12:19:23

Awful pain! I would rather give birth to triplets in the breech position with no pain relief than suffer another gall bladder attack.

Before mine was removed, I was given dihydracodeine for the pain. It didn't help with the pain but made me incoherent. I can remember my sister and mum telling the doctor that I was feeling better as I wasn't complaining about the pain any more. The pain was unchanged but I was completely unable to speak. So frustrating.

I didn't have heartburn or reflux issues though. Hope you feel better soon.

FriedPisces Fri 10-Feb-17 12:19:48

Not severe reflux but I do suffer from heartburn and my gallbladder plays up all the bloody time. Sore today after a flare up last night actually.

Anyone who's had theirs out had any long term side effects like weight gain etc? (Tell me to bugger off and start a new thread if you like, I am possibly hijacking! wink)

emsler Fri 10-Feb-17 14:16:51

Yup, it was the worst pain I've ever experienced, indescribable really and nothing touched it, not even morphine. I had the same experience as Trufflethewuffle - I was completely off my face on morphine and had the giggles because of it but was still in agony, but nobody would take me seriously because I was laughing. It was such a horrible experience. Actually eventually a really strong muscle relaxant worked but it took them ages to figure out what it was so I was in agony on and off for about 36 hours. Awful. I didn't have any reflux though, it was just the pain - under the breastbone and into the back, like someone had my gallbladder and heart in their fist and was squeezing them. Urgh.

I had mine out and I did gain a bit of weight afterwards but lost it again and I'm not sure how much of that was just because I was feeling crap because of the GA / surgery recovery etc.

I do have symptoms of post-cholecystectomy syndrome, including phantom cramps (much milder than the real symptoms but they give me flashbacks to the real pain which is horrible, sounds stupid but it was that bad!) - those are cured by taking a Buscopan which you can get over the counter. I also get gastritis very easily which is quite common post-gallbladder removal - I can't eat any spicy crisps for some bizarre reason, or cheese Doritos!

LionRichie Fri 10-Feb-17 14:24:17

Having the gallbladder out has been life changing! I did put on weight but only because I was very underweight. It's levelled off now and I'm finding I am not gaining as easily as I expected, prob because I can't digest too much fat. Only side effect is I now get heartburn if I eat too much.

Ledkr Fri 10-Feb-17 14:27:07

I was chubby anyway but no change grin
I love that they give you pain killers as by the time they worked it would be over and also i was often sick with an attack so useless.
I had tramadol which reduced me to a vomiting staggering mess. I was literally bumping into walls when I tried to walk and sick for a whole day.
I will clearly never be an addict grin

Eolian Fri 10-Feb-17 14:29:07

I had my gallbladder out in June. No further problems of any kind since then. I have put on a bit of weight, but I had lost a lot before the op when I was eating very low fat to avoid attacks. The weight gain has tailed off now.

dontbesillyhenry Fri 10-Feb-17 16:11:39

I am awaiting a scan.
When i get an attack the pain starts right at the top of my abdomen in the centre. Then after an hour or so moves to under my right rib cage (cant lie on that side at all) but its sort of everywhere- feel like ive got knives in my back, chest and even in my forehead (sort of life the pain when you eat ice cream).
I have constant heartburn and reflux

emsler Fri 10-Feb-17 16:23:04

Yep dontbesillyhenry that sounds like it. I found being on my hands and knees gave me the most relief. You could also try Buscopan, I took 10mg instead of 5mg (which is the prescription does) and that really helped but worth checking with your GP first. Omeprazole works too and might help with your heartburn/reflux.

FriedPisces Fri 10-Feb-17 17:19:59

Ah Jesus, I've tried so many weird positions (grinwinkblush) to try to get rid of the pain, or ride it out. In the bath with one arm draped over the side, doing bloody row-row-row your boat in an inch of water while bath is running, friggin yoga poses, all sorts. It feels like I need to open up my abdomen to help it. Last night I had two hot water bottles on me and I laid down but it didn't start to ease until I started heaving into a bucket.
It is shitter than shit.

LunaLoveg00d Fri 10-Feb-17 17:28:57

Are you pregnant?

I was necking Gaviscon by the bottle when I was pregnant with my first as my indigestion and reflux was just horrific, the link wasn't made with the gallstones until I had an attack a few weeks after I'd had him. Everyone tells you that indigestion is normal in later pregnancy so I didn't even think it could be gallbladder related. Buscopan (you can get it over the counter) is an anti-spasmodic and can help with the acute pain. And Gaviscon by the litre.

dontbesillyhenry Fri 10-Feb-17 17:37:13

No I'm not pregnant my little one is 13 months and it's got worse since I had him.
Strangely enough now I'm thinking back up when I was pregnant and kept having horrible pain sending me to delivery suite. The doctor felt where the pain was coming from and said it was from the liver area but bloods were normal. So was prob rumbling then

PopcornBits Sat 11-Feb-17 19:02:34

Barbarianmum I have heard that having gallbladder out with chron's disease can make the condition worse. I'm not sure how true that is.
It's also not advisable for celiac either.

I had the burning pain every day. Sometimes it would be milder than other days sometimes I had to take omeprozole which didn't always work. I hope your scans come back clear.

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