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Those with Gall Bladder problems/experience -can I ask your advice please

(8 Posts)
NorbertDentressangle Mon 10-Aug-09 12:32:57

Over the past couple of years I've had a couple of presumed gall bladder attacks -I say presumed as I've never managed to see a doctor when its happened (snowed in/bank hol/weekend etc) so its never been confirmed.

I had one ultrasound but this was after the event so nothing was found but I was told it could have been a stone that had passed through.

After a further attack the GP (who I couldn't get to see until afterwards) gave me an ultrasound form all filled in and signed other than the date and said that I should just turn up at the hospital (30mins away) and be scanned during the next attack.

Anyway yesterday and today I am getting discomfort verging on mild pain (not as acute as some of the attacks I've had in the past) under my ribs/top of abdomen area.

My dilemma is, as its mild, I have both DCs, the hospital is a drive away, theres no guarantee they'll scan me etc do I go or wait until its a more definite pain/attack?

Everytime I think I should go it seems to ease off a bit.

Interestingly we were on holiday last week and last year I also had an attack after we returned from holiday. Different diet triggering it maybe?

Kayteee Mon 10-Aug-09 16:18:02

Could you call the hospital first?

Also, I am wondering why your doc said to get a scan when you're having an attack hmm

As far as I know, you can see gallstones on a scan even when your not having an attack. Well you can see mine anyway!

I'm not medically qualified but I find it a bit strange tbh. Can you get a second opinion?

Also there are blood tests that you can have to test for them. Has he not mentioned this?

Naetha Mon 10-Aug-09 16:37:31

The key things to check for, are:

* Is it roughly 6 hours since you had a fatty meal? You will get a gall bladder attack as the stomach gets rid of its contents into the small intestine. So if you had a very fatty meal about 6-8 hours ago then it's likely. By very fatty, I'm talking fry-up, fish and chips, roast dinner, curry/chinese, not just a bit of bread and butter.

* Have you tried indigestion medicine? Rennie used to do the trick for me when sometimes I thought I was having a gall bladder attack, as the pain is very similar.

I'd also disagree with the whole having a scan when you're having an attack thing - I don't understand this at all. The gallstones will be there all the time, there's just an increased chance of blockage while you're having an attack.

How long has the pain been going on for? From the sounds of it, you're talking about an attack lasting 12 hours or more. This doesn't sound like a gall bladder problem unless you've been constantly eating fatty food for the past 24 hours.

Sorry if I'm not giving you the answers you're looking for, I'm just going on my past experience

NorbertDentressangle Mon 10-Aug-09 17:36:19

Thanks folks. You both talk sense as you will see from my up-date.

I went to the hospital ultrasound dept. as after lunch I was in agaony again. They wouldn't scan me as they don't see people on a "walk-in" basis, but as the GP had ticked the Urgent box they will see me within 10days.

I then went to the GP (same one who had given me the form for the ultrasound about 6 months ago ) who said that my last ultrasound (which had showed no gallbladder/gall stone problems) would have showed problems even if I wasn't having an attack at the time and theres no actual benefit to having a scan during an attack, which is not what he said back then hmm (although you both knew that smile!).

He is now saying that it sounds like an IBS/bowel/colon type problem and has referred me to a consultant who can do more involved scans.

Thanks again for your help and suggestions.

NorbertDentressangle Mon 10-Aug-09 17:39:31

oh, and to answer your questions Naetha:

-I had indigestion when pregnant and this seems completely different (location and type of pain)

-my diet is usually pretty good, also I'm veggie which tends to make it quite healthy, but having just been away on holiday we did eat out quite a bit. We got back Saturday and I've eaten simply and healthily since then.

Kayteee Tue 11-Aug-09 00:34:36


they give you antacid medication sometimes if an attack is really bad. I've taken Gaviscon in hospital and it relieves the pain quite well.

I always have a bottle of that lying around because it works usually.

mathanxiety Mon 17-Aug-09 08:51:07

Still, if it's gallstones, it will have to be dealt with. Yes, I knew the whole scan during an attack thing sounded crazy. If you can arrange childcare for a while, would you be willing to deviate from your healthy diet for a bit and see if the symptoms come back? There are blood tests too. The pain is in the right place for gallstones.

Anste Tue 25-Aug-09 18:03:03

I know how terrible the pain is, I was back and too at docs for ages. Even gave me indegestion remedies, then I could only eat dry cream crackers. I was admitted to hospital when I couldn't get out of bed or move (not even for toilet). It was an ambulance job, but too swollen to operate, sent home and sent for when swelling had improved. Good luck you've got my sympathy.

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