Gallstones, Hiatus Hernia and Acid Reflux.......What to do about it all!?

Posted , 7 users are following.

Hi Everyone

Here is my story. About a year ago, I had a severe reaction to a meal at work. It led to diorrehea, being sick and having the most excrutiating pains in my chest that I've ever had. It was hoorific and I was rushed to A&E thinking I was having a heart attack as I couldn't breathe. Thankfully it died down after about 4 hours.

I then started to get these regular attacks about once a month, but I just put them down to either food poisoning, bad indigestion, food introlrance. I was often ok the next day and just went on with life. then after six months it was 3 times a week and it started to take me longer to feel better. I just tried to brush it off and I was very naive and irnorant about it. 

Then in December last year things were really bad, I was having these attacks several times a week and was in agony for hours on end, ending up at A&E. It took ages to get my GP to refer me for tests, as they thought it was just gastronetiritis or IBS or a virus. One doctor would not refer me to hospital or do anything else and suggested I go private!!

So I got an endoscopy in February, but my stomach wasn't in the best of conditions, and they couldn't complete the test because I was in too much pain. By this time I had evaluated alot of things in my life as this had all shocked me and my family, as I have never had any major health problems. I stopped drinking totally and cut out all fatty and take away foods. I lost about two stone in weight and then watched what I ate to see what triggered these symptoms off. I now realise that I was leading a very stressful life and job last year, which may have been big factors in what has happened.

After Feb/March things seemed to pickup and I slowly regained my confidence in eating and the attacks went away and I only suffered mild indigestion after that. I thought I was on the mend and things were getting back to normal, but the past month I have been getting an acid taste in mouth again. I've had two bad indigestion attacks from eating the wrong foods(pizza). I was able to get through it, but it was like the attacks of last year.

I finally got to see a GI specialist and just the other week, and a surgeon who was very helpful and explained a lot of things in great detail. I went for another endoscopy and got through it (yah!). they said everything looked fine apart from a large hiatus hernia. I am booked in for a barium meal next month.

So to confirm, I have a hiatus hernia, gallstones and a bit of acid reflux. I'm not in any great pain at the moment and the acid coming up is only small, with a bit of coughing. I do get the odd pain and heat where my gallbladder is and sometimes pain in my back, which I understand is normal. My digestion of food sometimes seems to be a bit slow and often I have to wait for things to push through the system so to speak, before I can have something to eat, otherwise I get severe pains, stomach cramps, bloating etc...Its kind of like knowing your own body and its routines and habits. I do feel tons better after giving up drinking and have cut out all fatty foods and have had to even give up pizza(sob!) as the bread or dough is like digesting glass, same with crusty bread!

The specialist has suggested taking my gall bladder out, as he thinks the gallstones are causing a lot of my digestion issues. He's not forcing me and is letting me make up my mind, but he wants to do the barium meal to get a better picture of my insides. So I go back in a month to see him. All my GP is interested in, is giving me pills, pills, pills. He tried to give me lanszaprole and got angry when I said I didn't take them, as I will only take them as a last resort. I'm already on one set of tablets from something different that happened ten years ago, and that was only supposed to be a temporary solution! It all seems to easy for doctors to give out pills for everything. 

I must admit, my head is in a spin and I've been reading a lot of all the symptoms on the internet. I've got a week off work so I'm going to have a good think about things. I don't know if the gallstones cause the acid reflux or not? If they don't, I'm not sure if I need my gall bladder removed. Even if I did get it removed, would the acid problem still persist and would I then need another operation on the hiatus hernia?

Would love to hear from anyone who has/is going through similar things.

All the best


1 like, 9 replies

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9 Replies

  • Posted

    The bile the gallbladder produces purpose is to break down fats. So I don't know having it out would effect the acid reflux problems you're having. I would suggest taking the PPI's that the GI Dr suggested (just for now) because until they pin point everything for you, you really don't want the acid backing up into the esophagus as that can cause an even more serious complication.
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    • Posted

      Thanksfor your reply. Is it easy to come off the lanszaprole once you have started taking it for a while and are there any nasty side effects? Is it ok to take them just when you need them, as I'm loathe to take any kind of pills that I could become dependant upon.
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    • Posted

      Yes you can just take it when needed but you must take it 15-20 mins before you eat. (however if you have symptoms every day then it's usually suggested you take it every day)
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  • Posted

    How old are you David? What happens to a lot of us here is we get a huge shock that frightens the sox off us BUT then we are very good and start to feel better. We then relax a bit and whammo we are back in big strife. It seems to me there is no total cure and we just have to adapt to a very plain way of eating.
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    • Posted

      Hi rex. I'm the grand old age of 38. Yes I've certainly had to trim my diet and watch what I eat. I have adjusted, but some days I can eat certain foods and other days it puts me in hospital lol

      Have you gone through similar things?

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    • Posted

      Yes the same as you and its gone on for years. Trouble is ones symptoms change and you just have to keep reviewing your strategy. I have gone into remission twice now and if it happens again I'm going to be duper carefull and have a very boring life! Try a health diary. It does tell you a lot. Keep a record of how you feel as well. The trick is to never give up!
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  • Posted

    Hi, I suffer from all this too, been on omeprozole for 18 years.  Seams to be getting worse again. 

    The Attacks you have could be comming from the Gall Bladder, I had these terrible attacks, put me laying down on the couch for at least 3 days, in severe pain in the side, chest and all over.  I was once taken to the hospital for possible heart attack, but after all there testing it was fine. 

    The attacks continued for another 8 months till they were happening almost continuously and I could not function.  Had a scan of the Gall Bladder, and it was enlarged, and inflammed.

    I was on a fat free diet because if I ate fat, I would be in pain to where I couldn't stand up.  Pizza woud deffinitly kill me, but mainly from the Cheese, and other good stuff on it.

    They set me up with a surgeon, and removed the gall bladder.  It didn't take long to recover.  They called it an angry gall bladder.  I still have the Hiatus Hernia and Acid Reflux.  I am able to eat some fat again, and pizza but do to the other stomach problems still having heatburn, and gerd.  When the Gall bladder locks up with stones, it can no longer do its job. 

    Recently I have heard that Omeprozole, can acutally affect the gall bladder also, and may have caused some of the inflamation.  I am living again because I had the Gall Bladder taken out

    Hope it helps you

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  • Posted

     Well ican only give yo the benefit of my experience. I have eosophoghitus, hiatus hernia and a polp inmy stomach . Had bad acid in my throat no other symptoms . Medication did me no good the only answer is a strict no or low acid diet .It s the only thing that healed me . Occasionally I can now eat the occasional naughty foods!! and a glass of wine but thats it back to the healing foods. Its far better than pills but needs strength of character to maintain, very difficult at times especially with your social life .Stress also makes things worse too,so keeping  calm and relaxed as much s possible helps . Haven't been on this site for a while as I am coping well these days , so just popped in to see whats coming up .But I swear by Kuafman as a good book to get you started . Hope that helps .Lots of places to find low acid recipes on Line too.  
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