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Gallbladder op info

(11 Posts)
kayleigh39 Tue 27-Sep-16 20:44:39

Hi there's mummies,
Cut a long story short, I'm being referred to have my gallbladder out, so was wondering what experiences others have had and what to expect?
When can I drive again after etc?
Thanks x

TiffanyAching42 Fri 30-Sep-16 20:53:18

I had mine out by keyhole surgery in January. It was supposed to be day surgery but as I was not taken until 4pm I had an overnight in hospital. My gallbladder was keen to stay where it was so I ended up with a drain in for four days, after surgery, but I was able to go home with it, and I think that's quite unusual to have one. I had surgery on Monday and the drain was out by Friday. I had some back/shoulder pain for about a week after due to the gas that was used in the surgery to inflate the abdomen, this wasn't too severe and settled down quite quickly. Legally you can't drive for 24 hours after a general anaesthetic, but I was told I could drive once I could do an emergency stop (I would check with your surgeon). I was driving after a week. You will be very tired immediately after and you will need to rest and allow yourself to recouperate. I was taking a combination of dihydrocodine, paracetamol and ibruprofen for pain initially and my advice would be to take it regularly at first so you don't let the pain get stated. By the end of the week I was able to start reducing the amount of painkillers I was taking.

I went back to work after a fortnight, but I work in an office, if you're doing anything strenuous you'll need loner. No heavy lifting for two weeks and generally a month for full recovery.

This is a link to the Royal College of Surgeon's leaflet on recovery etc

snozzlemaid Fri 30-Sep-16 21:11:55

Had mine out in April. Home the same day. Recovered well until I developed an infection in one of my wounds a few days after surgery. Became an abcess so i had antibiotics and had to have it packed and dressed every two days for three weeks.
I would have been fine to go back to work after two weeks if it wasn't for the infection. Ended up off work for four weeks though. The other two wounds healed really quickly.
It was definitely worth it. I'm completely back to normal now and can eat without fear again.

PandoNoPants Sat 01-Oct-16 22:12:09

I had issues (no stones) and had mine out in 2011. Honestly? It's my easiest surgery to date. I had keyhole and the most discomfort was from the gas they use to inflate you during surgery (I recommend peppermint tea to help that!!). I was also quite fatigued.

I had co codamol 30/500 for the pain but didn't actually need to take that strength.

The driving part depends on how you have it taken out. Your surgeon will be able to advise.

I did have a few issues after with a really bad upset stomach for a while. I do have a really sensitive stomach though. I still can't eat eggs (fatty foods, even good fats!) without trouble, especially on an empty stomach.

However, my Mum had hers out last year with no issues at all!

...and no more gallbladder pain/infections! (hands down the most painful thing ever for me!) Ouch!

welshweasel Sat 01-Oct-16 22:17:21

I tell people a week for driving and back to work after 2 weeks. Some people are able to go back sooner but in general most feel a but rubbish the first week but much better the second week.

kayleigh39 Sat 01-Oct-16 23:11:09

Thanks guys!!

WordsAreWind Sun 02-Oct-16 16:58:10

Hi Kayleigh

I was just about to have a look for my own thread to update and saw this.

I had mine out on the 12th Sept, so tomorrow it will be exactly 3 weeks ago.

It took 4 months from referral to getting my Pre-Op and and Day Surgery appointments through. The wait is depending on how busy your area is. Try and eat as low fat as you possibly can leading up to surgery.

I was in and out the same day. I arrived at 12pm and was home by 9.30pm. The Nurses, Anaesthetists and Surgeons i spoke to before the Op were all wonderful and made me feel at ease.

When i came round after the Op, i was massively spaced out lol due to the Anaesthetic and Fentynal. For pain relief in recovery i was given a bit more Fentynal and a slow release Tramadol.
They will get you to carefully sit, drink, eat, walk and have a pee before they are satisfied you can go home. I was sore and stoned but got there in the end.
They'll ring your Husband/Partner or named responsible adult to come and pick you up when they know you are nearly ready to go home.
This responsible adult needs to be with you for 24 hours after surgery because of the GA.

I was discharged with 30/500 Co-codamol to take every 6 hours and standard Ibruprofen to take every 8 hours. Take your pain relief as prescribed to start with, you will need them.

When i got home i went straight to bed. I'm not going to lie, when all the hospital grade painkillers wore off, it was quite painful. I took my painkillers as prescribed.

I spent the first 4 days in bed mostly. I used 3 pillows to prop me up so i was wasn't flat on my back and i made sure i got up to walk around every couple of hours. I made sure when i ate i would get up to eat at the dining table even if it was only for 5 minutes. They advise you not to take to your bed and stay there as moving around promotes healing and helps blood flow.

The first 3 days i had no appetite, but made sure i would eat something, even if it was just a banana, some toast or some soup. After those 3 days i was ravenous lol.
My DP did everything for me whilst i recovered thankfully.

I kept myself occupied between resting watching TV shows on my laptop.

When moving around for first few days make small careful movements, especially when getting on and off bed, going to the toilet etc. It gets easier.

They inflate your abdomen with air during surgery. This will bloat you a lot and you will have some trapped wind pain for a few days. Peppermint tea really helped me.

The Surgery and Co-codamol will slow your digestion down for a few days. I got some Senokot and started taking this every night whilst i was taking Co-codamol. Within 3 days after surgery things started improving.

Try not to eat any big heavy meals. For the first two weeks i ate litte and often and stayed away from high fats and spices. I've been adding small amounts of fats and spices slowly into my diet this last week and i have been ok so far. My stomach is still a little unsettled, but it's improving day by day.

By the end of the first week i was already swapping my Co-codamol for normal Paracetamol and taking less throughout the day, walking around more.
When i got into the second week i was doing more outside the house. Taking a slow careful walk down the road with my DP and eventually leading up to getting the bus into town and going round the shops and attending a hobby group i go to just for the cup of tea and chat. You will get some tightness and pulling sensation around your wound sites, so be careful and don't over do it, move around at a pace you are comfortable with.
Into week 3 and i was already back into my normal routine albeit a bit more careful and slow than i usually am and a little bit more tired towards the end of the day.
I was advised not to lift anything heavier than a kettle for upto 4 weeks and nothing heavy at all for atleast 6 weeks, this is because you are high risk for an abdominal hernia until you are fully healed.

You will be given loads of information during your Pre-op assessment and some more information on discharge, including wound care etc.

I have 4 wound sites. One under my right side rib cage, another about two inches below that. one just below my sternum and one at the top of my belly button. I had disolvable stitches and i had no problem with any of the wounds and they are healing nicely. I would imagine as time goes on you will barely notice they are there.

Because of where the wounds will be, you will need to wear loose fitting elasticated trousers (Trackies or PJ bottoms) and i wouldn't advise on wearing a bra post op for about a week or until you're comfortable wearing one.

I was bit nervous before i went to have mine done. I made a thread on here and some lovely Mumsnetters came along and set my mind at ease and got me prepared for what was about to happen and it all went really well.

I hope this has been helpful to you.

If you have anymore questions don't hesitate to ask.

Rolypoly Sun 02-Oct-16 17:08:20

I had my gallbladder removed by keyhole surgery. The worst proplem I had was pain in my shoulder area from the gas they pump in to enable them to operate but that subsided in a couple of days. I found getting out of a chair difficult for a few days as I could not use my stomach muscles. I was functioning at about 90% after a week and was able to go running (gently) in three weeks. I was in absolute agony from attacks before the op. but have had no problems since. I would recommend it to anyone.

snozzlemaid Sun 02-Oct-16 17:32:33

I will add that I just took normal paracetamol and ibuprofen after the surgery. I didn't need anything stronger than that. And i was up and about the day after. I didn't feel that I needed to stay in bed. I didn't do much mind, but felt better being out of bed.

hells456 Mon 03-Oct-16 17:58:29

I had mine out a year ago. I was all prepared to ease back into fats over a month or so, but my consultant said the patients he had that jumped straight back into a normal diet tended to suffer less from stomach issues. I followed his advice with plenty of cheese, chocolate and bacon sarnies and I can eat anything in any amount without side effects, even things that had upset my stomach for years.

Post surgery I was given paracetamol and I did wish I could have had something stronger for the first three days. I didn't take anything after a week. I found that extra pillows so I didn't have to sleep flat and lots of comfort telly helped the most.

fuckweasel Mon 03-Oct-16 19:55:19

Watching this thread with interest as my gallbladder removal will be happening soon (no date yet). I'm just out of a couple of days in hospital with acute cholecystitis and was on IV antibiotics and various opiates! No prior attacks before this so came as a bit of a shock. Ultrasound showed a nice big gallstone blocking a duct. It was reassuring that the woman in the bed next to me had the operation at the same time I was admitted and she was up and walking the same day (albeit a bit gingerly).+

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