A&E - must be brave and get op!

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Hi all

Just want to share my story as reading other peoples has really helped me.

I have been getting the courage up to have gallbladder removal op for 5 months now!! having had stones fr 2 whole years with little problems decided not to get op as wasnt affecting my life. (apart from when pregnant and i first found i had them. the pain back then was pretty bad).

WELL...! these last months have been so painful with a gallbladder attack most weeks. and last five weeks have given me a huge wake up call. i ended up in A&E when i had pains every day fr a week from the moment i woke up to the moment i went to bed, I couldnt eat the plainest of foods an apple a bowl of rice a drink of water were all kicking the pains off. In a&e they admitted me with nil by mouth and after scan and xray was told still had the gallstones but also had got pancreatitis due to these nasty little stones.

thankfully the pancreatitis was mild and i was allowed home in a week but having been in hosp and seeing the amount of people on my ward in with gallstone complications it has made me make the brave decision to get the op. the pain with pancreatitis was not worth the doubts i have had over the op as scared as iam!! i cant believe i have been putting this off fr two whole years without realising the compliications gallstones can cause.

wish me luck !! keep u all posted. reading ppl on here that have had the op and havnt looked back has made me feel positive. (nervous but got to be done now!)

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12 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi there - just wanted to say - yes, be brave and go for it. I was sooo scared I actually felt like I mentally fell apart before the December date I had booked which then was cancelled. I eventually had my op in June. I told everyone at the hospital connected with my surgery that I had OCD (which adds a whole other fear factor to things) and that I was very scared - and truely, the hospital staff were so wonderful. The worst part for me was the anesthetic - in as much as being wheeled into the room and thinking \"OH MY GOD - Am I really doing the right thing???????\" but that was the worst bit.

    After surgery as soon as they parked the bed on the ward, I was up, dressed and walking the corridors - and felt no pain. In fact 8 weeks on, although I am still healing in my belly button (I caught an infection in that area), I can't believe how well I feel. I never knew how ill I really was! I am still very warey of eating foods that previously had me rolling on the floor in agony, but I always make sure I eat plenty of fibre, take 3 Slippery Elm Bark tablets a day, as well as the Colpermin, and Colofac for my IBS, but that is nothing to what I had been taking for my Gallstones!

    I am a big girl - at around 13.5 stones (was 21stones in Feb 09), but in order to be as fit as possible for surgery, I took up with a Personal Trainer 3 times a week, and continued this 4 weeks after surgery - even though I felt like I could have gone back the next day. The reason I didn't return to working out sooner was because of the belly button.

    I know its scary to have to surgery - but your life without Gallstones will be so much comfier. I was petrified of the after effects because of the horror stories I'd read - but I can honestly say now, I am sooo very glad my wonderful surgeon answered all the questions I had patiently, and gave me the time I needed to think and say yes to the surgery.

    Good luck with having your operation.... even though you won't need it! smile

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  • Posted

    Big thankyou for your reply & good luck wishes!!

    I went to see surgeon yesterday and he sent me for my pre med and should be going for op within 6 weeks now!!

    you say the worry fr you was the anaesthetic well SNAP!! as that is exactly what I am worrying over - not so much the op but that feeling like u say of getting wheeled down just before they put you to sleep and thinking what am i doing...get me out of here! I have actually 'joked' with family that at this point i will probably jump off the hospital bed in my gown and run all the way home!!!

    But am honestly ready to get these lil blighters out now and get my life back on track sounds dramatic but they do take over dont they.. so deep breaths for me and bring the surgery on!

    As you said even after the op i will probably be terrified of the certain foods that become the big avoid at all costs when you have gallstones but nothing can be worse than the pain all us gallstone sufferers have to put up with.

    so glad you are recovering well afer your op and gives us people wanting to get the op positivity at what is a stressfull/tearful/scary time..

    Thankyou!!

    :D

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  • Posted

    all the best for your op - i hope you dont have to wait to long!!

    dont worry about the aneasetic - my op seemed to happen in a blink- one min i was counting down from 10 - the next i was being woken up in recovery and it was all over!! my op was a little on the long side - it was fine.

    let us know when you have a date and how you are getting on.

    please feel free to ask any questions, there is loads of experience on this site.

    good luck for your op.

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  • Posted

    Can I just ask everyone thats had the op - when you wake up from the anesthetic do you have any tubes, etc still attached to you - like from where they operated from - i have heard that you go home with a tube for bile still attached until your next hosp appt when they remove it?? is this true?? I should of asked all this at my hosp appt - and now my minds starting to tick over of what to expect when i wake up.

    Also having never been under anesthetic how can the hosp know am not going to react badly??

    Okay my nerves are starting to get the better of me now - if you can tell!!

    Still not heard my surgery date yet - but got a MRI scan in a week which if everything okay I should be getting op sometime after this!!

    :shock:

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  • Posted

    lisiilee calm down - generally most people will wake up with a drip for fluids i their arm... if they need further drains etc. they will be put their for a reason!! while you are away with the faries any tubes that are inserted will be done so for a reason, and for your benifit. you will be so well monitered and any actions will be taken for the greater good. the people in attendence will only have your best interests in their minds and if any further actions become necessary they will take them. no one can garentee you will not wake up with extra tubes still in situ (i did and got through it) despite having drains and a naso gastric tube inserted they were all gone before i left the hospital. although i had to stay longer than anticipated, but i had a lot of complications.

    this op is so common it is unbelievable.

    aneasetic problems are rare and as you will be so well monitered any problems will be nipped in bud so quick and sorted so quickly you will know nothing untill after the op!! trust me it will be fine.

    all the best for your appointment. i hope you get an op date soon.

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  • Posted

    i have just had my gallbladder removed on the 30th august, i had a single incision, i came round in recovery with a drip in my arm and a mask on my face ( standard procedure ) i had no other attachments smile

    try not to worry as there will be a great time there and you are constantly monitered, just think how good you will feel when the gallbladder is actually gone, it is a great feeling smile

    i went in on the monday got taken to theatre at 2.30, i had an over night stay and got discharged on the tuesday at 6.00pm, i have been taking it easy since, but i can move very freely.

    any other questions just ask

    shelley xxx

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  • Posted

    Thanks Vixen & shelley!!

    I know I need to calm down and remember the reason I am goin in there is to get my life back on track & no more pain!!

    thanks fr the support & info - keep you posted on my op date/scan smile

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  • Posted

    Just to update!

    Had my mri scan and results all come back clear thankfully!

    So no need for endescopy (the cameras down the throat i think?) or any interference not needed before they can actually operate - such relief.

    so now will be getting gallbladder op in december - feels like its been a long time coming but deep breaths and lets get on with it!! wish me luck!!

    :D

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  • Posted

    good luck for december Lisiilee, thanks for the update and let us know how you are doing.

    vix

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  • Posted

    Just a quick update!

    Had my op two weeks ago now...

    All seems okay thankfully. had a few days on painkillers but was up out and about after a few days rest at home. 4 incisions seem to be healing - am still eating very healthy like i was preop but dont feel scared that the pains will return. how long before you can have a bit of what you like?? a drink or two?? also apart from the visible scars no real pain or discomfort now two weeks on.

    Had no problems whilst in hospital they let me go home the day after surgery - said the gallbladder had scarring but no inflamation and they no longer investigate into getting the stones from gallbladder so i didnt bring them home with me like alot of ppl seem to do. not that i would. dont want them ever again!!

    The only thing the surgeon did say is that instead of the usual clips they use he had to staple the tube duct as mine was larger than the norm but that this shouldnt cause any problems.

    For me the surgery couldnt come soon enough after a stressful and painful time (although did have my moments of wanting to cancel it and even going down to surgery was saying i cant do it!)- all has been done and now i can hopefully see the light at the end of what has been a very long tunnel at times - goodbye gallbladder hello life back!! :D

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  • Posted

    Lisiilee,

    thanks for the update, its a relief to got it over with isn't it! i am glad all went well for you.

    here's hoping for your continued recovery!!

    it's good that you have kept up the healthy eating post op - yeah you should be careful getting back to a normal eating routine! have a drink or 2 and see how you go, be careful over the festive season and don't overdo things as far as the seasonal celebrations go (treat yourself a bit - enjoy your christmas dinner, but dont stuff yourself silly as your digestive system wont be used to it) it is better to have a few goodies and pace yourself than to go all out and overdo the christmas goodies and feel the consequenses on christmas day!!! if you have eaten a good christmas dinner and feel full give your system a break and leave the pudding for a couple of hours.

    as you have said the external scars are healing, but it takes time to heal internally and if you overstreatch your digestive system this can have a knock on affect at the deeper wound site. even 4 1/2 years after my op i have learned that if i push it to much in this way i suffer for days!

    as to the stones - i was presented with a large pot of the things post op, curiosity got the better of me and i opened it to have a look - the smell was horrid - i asked a nurse to dispose of them there and then .. friends and family can believe i did not keep them as a 'momento' !!! i would not want them in the house they were manky and smelly!!

    all the best, i hope you have a good christmas and a healthy new year.

    vix

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  • Posted

    Thankyou for the advice will definately be taking it easy this xmas! - and thanks for the advice and reassurance along the way - has been a difficult time preop, very stressful, lots of tears, lots of pain, but am hoping the worst is finally over with and as you say just take it easy as still have to give time to heal. thanks vix hope you also have a great xmas and yes keep updated in the new year. all the best. smile
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