Gallbladder pain - where is/was yours????

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Hello everyone,

I've recently had an ultrasound and diagnosis of inflammation of my gallbladder and a very small polyp in situ. Waiting to see specialist now.

?I've looked up where the pain can refer to (between and under shoulder-blades, in the back and around front ribcage /abdomen) - it's a tick on all of those from me. My question is did anyone have pain on their right side going down from their right side of ribs/flank even to just above their hipbone area. Hard to describe!

?I would really appreciate hearing from anyone who can reassure me this sounds "normal" or similar to their experience. Many thanks.


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  • Posted


    Before I had my gallbladder removed I had a constant ache underneath my rib cage on right hand side which radiated up my back between my shoulder blades. I had numerous tests which included blood tests, CT scan, MRI scan, ultrasound and endoscopy. I was diagnosed with an enlarged gallbladder but no gallstones. I had gallbladder removed by keyhole surgery just over a year ago. The surgeon stated that my gallbladder as well as being enlarged was badly diseased. Have had a few niggles at times but generally eat a low fat diet and everything is fine x

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    • Posted

      Thanks for your response Gwyneth72826... I have a Ct scan booked in a weeks time which can't come soon enough! I'm finding it pretty debilitating and with hindsight I ignored the build up to this for months like an idiot.

      ?I just haven't heard of gallbladder pain travelling lower but my pain does seem to move around a lot so I'm hoping that's all it is.

      ?I saw a physio privately last week as I wondered if the seemingly lower pain could be unrelated to gallbladder and actually a muscular pain (I slipped on black ice late November) - she said def not muscular but obviously couldn't comment on gallbladder pain as not her job - and she said it's different for everyone. That's why I thought I'd ask here and see what people said.

      ?My Mum had her gallbladder removed years ago and funnily enough her pain was always triggered by citrus and not the fats that everyone lists as the culprit.  

      ?Thanks again anyway. Do hope you continue to do well. Sounds like you've had success with your op and I'm relieved to read that as I ventured into the forum a bit and a lot of folks seem to still have probs even with their gallbladders removed.  



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  • Posted

    The pain I felt as well as being able to feel the enlarged gall bladder was under the right bottom rib and breathing out deeply I could feel my gallbladder. I saw a very eminent lymphoma doctor & while I did not particularly consult him re lymphoma he knows every mortal thing about the human body & he said it would be interesting to him to check my gall bladder. He confirmed I was correct & that it was my enlarged gall bladder I could feel.

    As well as that the nice young lady who did my ultra sound ( second one said I had a 'big' gall bladder.

    Since I took a years course of Ursodioxycholic acid that eradicated nearly all my stones but this would of course not be advised for you as it is purely for dissolving certain type stones. The main problem was when I had eaten the terrible sickness feeling would come when I was ready to go to bed & that happened on several occasions for months and as well as the meal did not seem to digest there is a bad feeling everything is seized up under the heart due probably to wind/bloating. When I was eventually sick the feeling of wanting to die comes about because the symptoms are very bad....... A spare time nurse at the queens med was not at all sympathetic & said your gall bladder is just grumbling. She same as the registar knew nothing re the suffering patients have when they are in the state I was in..... If left too long through

    neglect by those who are supposed to be helping dire consequences can ensue.

    I believe the folks who have had the Hidra scan may well be what you will be advised to do as I believe this scan confirms the workings of the gall bladder......... I believe that they can do a lot of procedures by endoscopy these days so I hope you can get your problem sorted out quickly.

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    • Posted

      Thanks for your input Micklemus. I hope it's sorted soon too! CT scan next week and then I may learn more.

      You certainly seem to have been through the mill with things - I hope you continue to do well now.


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    • Posted

      If my symptoms do return I will not hesitate to start another course of Ursodioxycholic acid tabs as I have a bucket full of them, enough for half a dozen gall bladders I would wager!

      As I said Ursodioxycholic acid works for some but not others but to get at the truth of that method of dissolving stones it is down to those interested in keeping their gall bladder to research it.

      Does anyone think for one minute that any doctor who has gall stones would not try the chemical way of treating them first before contemplating hopping onto the operating table for a removal?

      I doubt it very much and don't forget everyone who gets onto that table signs his/her life away should the unthinkable happen.

      Ok there is many a gall bladder if not all gall bladders removed by keyhole surgery but never the less there is still a risk in any operation and as well as that I was told that after 70 the mortality rate goes up by 10% but you only find that out if you research it. As well as that little lot you may be told there is added risk if you are unfortunate enough to have any other health problem that adds to the ordinary risk. Quite frankly what I was told or rather warned was exactly like asking me to run  across a minefield blindfolded. ie you've got 20% chance of being dead if you go in for a gall bladder removal. This kind lady registrar also knew nothing whatsoever  about urso which reduced my trust in her to zero.

      Research research research and always take the safest option.

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    • Posted

      Dear UKJo  I thought you said you were having a CT scan to look for stones as they can see stones on a CT scanner? That is without contrast as well just ordinary scan. The usual first line was/is

      ultrasound which I'm told is very quick and usually diagnoses a very large percentage of stones in the gall bladder and even the bile ducts and small intestine.

      Best Wishes for your CT scan.

      Incidentally my grandmother had what they termed billious bouts when I was a child but she never did have any operation at all for her problem. She lived to 84 but was not killed by her gall bladder but fell downstairs & with a broken collar bone complications that proved her 'undoing'.

      It is said that gallstone problems may well be a family affair so that may be the reason for mine

      even though I cut every bit of fat from any meat I eat.......

      Did you read the article that a low fat diet can cause gallstones? If you don't use it etc etc.....

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    • Posted

      Sorry Micklemus...I wasn't clear.

      I'm having a ct scan next week at the suggestion of my GP but it sounds as if it's to rule out anything else going on at the same time as the diagnosed gallbladder issue - I guess because all of my pain doesn't sound atypical to my GP. They seemed pretty convinced the ultrasound said no stones but as you say, maybe the ct scan will show stones after all.

      ?The reason I ended up on here was because - truth be told - I was looking for reassurance that my pain was familiar to someone. I'm actually feeling quite scared and whilst also in pain that's not a great feeling.

      ?Anyway, appreciate the messages I received and hope everyone stays well.


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    • Posted

      Dear UKjo   My symptoms were ongoing for a couple of years at least and they were vague at first but continued to worsen and I then noticed I suffered with bloating after any decent sized meal.

      Of course the sufferer tries to find what is affecting them before going to the GP and as a few realize on this blog the gall bladder can produce numerous symptoms.

      That maybe the reason the suffering can go on for a very long time but I firmly believe that if a stone is stuck in the bile duct this quickly brings severe symptoms to the fore & one soon discovers that they do have a gall bladder with problems !

      When my gall bladder was inflamed and did have stones in it it could be felt under the right bottom rib. Dipite what  the A&E aux nurse said re my gall bladder was only grumbling she was wrong because an eminent doctor told me he could never feel a persons gall bladder but he could feel mine!  He told me to consult Mr S P.... Nottingham as soon as I could. It still took over two months to get some constructive action on the go but I am thankful the outcome has been good in the end.

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  • Posted


    My pain was right across my abdomen at times, but mainly right sided and in right shoulder blade. More than a year on I still experience right sided discomfort near lower ribs and still get some right shoulder blade pain, especially if I’ve been overdoing it. It’s not diet related as I’m really careful not to eat too much fat- can’t manage a full portion of fish and chips anymore as I feel full quickly but can eat a very small portion without problems. 

    Never had pain go below waistline. Maybe referred pain? Hope someone else can help.

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    • Posted

      Gosh! So have you had your gallbladder removed Beenthruit? 

      ?I'm not a fish and chip fan these days anyway (they never taste as good as they smell!!) but I'm trying to be careful at the moment and following advice of small meals more frequently, low fat and no red meat. Too soon to say if it's helping.

      I have questions for the specialist when I get to see him/her. Adding to the list daily!

      ?Really hoping it won't be too long.

      Thanks again for your response.


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