I'm at my wits end

Posted , 5 users are following.

now having biliary colic every night. Missing work, barely eating. Had ultrasound confirmed gallstones but surgeon refused to put me on waiting list due to high bmi. Referred to dietician next month. Can't live like this. Any advice?

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10 Replies

  • Posted

    That's ridiculous how can they leave you in pain. NHS? Can't offer any advice other than phone them up and say don't bother with the dietician because i can't eat anyway.

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  • Posted

    I work for the NHS. They are writing threatening letters to me because I've had time off because they won't operate.

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    • Posted

      I find boiled veg, prawns, turkey, soup, tuna in spring water, toast, soup, fat free cottage cheese and muller lights ok. If you work for the NHS they of all people should understand.

      Take Care.

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  • Posted

    Try BRATs: bananas, rice, applesauce, tea and toasts. This is sometimes used in hospitals to calm symptoms. Obviously it cannot be used long term but may help in the short term. I have a friend who claimed eating pears helped her.

    I ate a low fat diet and it did help. Attacks became less severe, less frequent and shorter. It also had the added benefit of weight loss. I lost around three stones in five months while I was waiting for surgery due mainly to eating low fat, but also I was nil by mouth for several procedures and I had no appetite. If you get pain when you eat, it does put you off food: there were days I had to force myself to eat something- usually toast or baked or mashed potato.

    Also ask doctor for pain killers. Avoid morphine and codeine based meds as they constipate and you don't need that on top of the pain you're in already. I found simple Paracetamol helped ease pain a little.

    I sympathise with you. It's almost cruel the way some doctors treat gallbladder patients. Having to wait until next month before you can see a dietician is ridiculous when you're in so much pain. Pain wears you down. By the time I had surgery I was exhausted. My attacks sometimes lasted 3-4 days during which I couldn't eat or sleep.

    How much weight will you need to lose before they agree to do the surgery? If they can do bariatric surgery, when patients have really high bmis, why can't they do cholecystectomy?

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  • Posted

    I don't know how much weight I need to lose. The surgeon did not tell me. I left feeling ashamed and embarrassed, that I've brought this on myself. I wasn't brave enough to ask after that. I am now about 10 pounds lighter. Should I ask to be referred again so that I can ask? Can I not be put on a waiting list while I lose weight? 

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    • Posted

      I think you need to stand your ground and be firm, Rosemary. Sadly, I'm afraid that, unless you pester every time you have an attack, they are going to think you are coping and won't show any urgency. Next (and every) time you have an attack, attend A&E and tell them you've lost weight and how desperate you are to have surgery. Ask them why patients with high BMIs can have bariatric surgery and yet you can't have cholecystectomy? We'd all like to know the answer to that one!

      Alternatively ask to be referred to another surgeon. I opted to have any HB surgeon and said I could be available at short notice. Just over a month later, I was rang and asked to attend a pre op next day. Had surgery a week later.

      Please don't feel ashamed. There are other reasons why people get gallstones: it not just being overweight that causes them. In fact there's a theory that gallstones can cause people to put weight on. What about people who smoke or drink heavily? Or those who get STDs? Nobody suggests they shouldn't be treated.

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    • Posted

      I wanted to go to a & e the other night - the attack was a really bad one - but I don't know how I'd get home. A taxi would cost a fortune and I don't know anyone who could come and fetch me. I have a houseful of pets but my family live a long way way sad . Since I have an attack virtually every night ( although ,fingers crossed, not tonight) I'd never be out of the place! I think I've had 5 attacks in 7 days.

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    • Posted

      Ok, I get your situation. Go to GP and explain how often these attacks are occurring. Unless the medics know you're having these attacks, they'll just assume you're coping with them. The thing is, these attacks won't go away. They will get worse. I'm concerned about that and you being on your own.

      You could email or write to your local PALS if you're in uk. The Patient and Liaison Service is there to be the patient's advocate with the hospital. State your case to them for why you should get surgery and explain your situation. They have to reply within a certain time. They may be able to influence your surgeon or find one who is prepared to do the surgery. As I've said, no matter what your BMI is, they do bariatric surgery so why not cholecystectomy?

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  • Posted

    That is so shocking. My daughter had a similar situation. She was referred to the fertility clinic, they wouldn't even see her because of her weight. They didn't write to her with an explanation. She found out when her GP phoned to find out what was happening. And she's a ward sister with the NHS.  

    They cant leave you in pain. And then pressure you for being off. Is there no one in the hospital, such as PALS, that could help. 

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