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So I ended up in hospital last night with severe pain in my stomach, turns out to be gallstones, apparently the fact that I had a baby 8 weeks ago puts me at higher risk of this. So they sent me home and now I'm awaiting an ultra sound scan and then if all comes back confirmed I will be having my gall bladder out. I'm now so scared to eat as I don't want to eat the wrong thing and set it off again as the pain is intense and as I'm breast feeding can't take strong pain killers, but at the same time I need to eat for breastfeeding... Anyone else had this problem and have any tips to keep the flare ups at bay until I get my gall bladder removed?
Main thing is avoid really fatty food, greasy fish and chips are a big no no! Anything with high fat content likely to cause a flare up.
You might not have gallstones if it was a one off episode of pain. Gallstones more likely to cause recurrent pain. Fingers crossed your scan will be clear and won't need surgery!
You have my every sympathy - gall bladder pain is horrendous. I had my only ever attack 3 weeks after having my first baby and was rolling around the floor in agony. Much more painful than labour. Although I only ever had one severe attack, the gall bladder was constantly grumbling and I was going through Gaviscon by the gallon. I didn't have stones as such - the scan showed up that my gall bladder was filled with what the sonographer described as "sand".
Having it out was the best thing I ever did! The surgery is usually done keyhole style which means you are usually in and out the same day, or stay one night only and the recovery is pretty quick too. Just make sure you read up on breastfeeding and general anaesthetic as it can be done.
The consultant told me a low fat, vegetarian diet with moderate amounts of alcohol would help. You soon learn what sets you off - for me it was custard, cheese and pastries. So croissants and that sort of thing were completely off the menu. Eating little and often is better than big meals.
Don't be put off by the surgery - pregnancy raises the risk of gallstones (think it's something to do with the oestrogen) and the last thing you want is a severe attack during a future pregnancy if you decide to have another baby.
Good luck :-)
I too developed gallstones after pregnancy. My full sympathies as the attacks are awful. I was diagnosed early December and had my gallbladder out last week. My DD is now 9 months and is still BF.
In terms of food, I stuck to a very low fat diet. Lean meats such as turkey and chicken with rice, pasta, potatoes and veg. I didn't eat anything above 5g of fat per 100g. Haribo and marshmallows were my 'treats'. I read online that eggs and bananas can cause attacks so avoided them too. You do need to eat, your body will still make milk but your health will suffer.
I couldn't have any caffeine which is probably wise if you're bf anyway. It always had me running for the loo My liver function was deranged after one attack and was only back to normal last week...5 months later! Apparently this is common so might be wise to avoid alcohol too.
I was prescribed buscopan after an attack and it seemed to work well in relaxing the GB. It's worth asking your gp for painkillers, I'd also give the lovely people at the drugs in bf network helpline a call as often GPs aren't fully aware of recent updates and studies www.breastfeedingnetwork.org.uk/detailed-information/drugs-in-breastmilk/
The NHS guidelines are 18 weeks from referral to treatment in England. Not sure if the strikes are affecting this timescale though.
The operation was fine. Keyhole with 4 small incisions. I only took painkillers for 2 days. Not allowed to lift the baby for a couple of weeks but have felt well enough to potter around IKEA yesterday and go out for lunch today.
I hope you get referred and treated quickly. If you have ant questions or worries, just ask
I had my gallbladder removed earlier today. As others have said avoid fatty foods. My episodes were rare thankfully but it does make you terrified to eat. I rarely ate outside the house. I learnt to cope with the pain of an attack once I knew what it was for sure. I would lie down and concentrate on my breathing and tell myself that it will pass. Mine tended to last for about an hour.
I hope you get scanned and sorted as soon as possible, it's horrid to live with that fear.
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