Mid-to-right back/shoulder pain after surgery

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I had my gallbladder removed exactly 2 weeks ago today. I also had an ERCP and bile duct stent placed the next day as 3 stones were lodged in my common bile duct. Recovery has gone well, but over the last few days I've started to feel transient pain (5 out of 10) in my right shoulder/back, which lasts for literally seconds at a time and then disappears. It woke me up all through the night last night. At first I thought it was just lingering trapped wind from the surgery, but 400mg of ibuprofen this morning took it down to a 2 or a 1, which I know wouldn't happen with trapped wind.

I have a follow-up with my surgeon on Wednesday, but I wanted to know if anyone else has had this pain as a part of their recovery? I'm not too worried about it as I know I'm still in the very early stages of recovery, but my mind would be put at ease if I knew others had experienced the same thing! You know how it is. smile 

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  • Posted

    When you had the ERCP did they say they’d managed to remove the stones?

    I occasionally still get aching (like toothache) in the right shoulder blade if I overdo things and when I’m tired.  I had my gallbladder removed by open surgery just over a year ago because I had multiple large stones in my cbd. I also get aching and tenderness in right rib area where gallbladder was. I have heard others have similar. The pain is nothing like the severity of the pre op pain and no nausea, sickness or diarrhoea

    Your surgeon should be able to put your mind at rest. Ask him if all stones were removed from your cbd via ERCP. It may be you need a scan just to be sure this is the case. Good luck.

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    • Posted

      Yes this is the reason for ercp. To remove lodged stones from bile ducts. I also had a stent. Ercp. I am still recovering. Last July and August had both surgeries. Now I am tolerating foods now. Still staying on a not so fat free diet. I still watch fat intake. This is the key to staying healthy. Good Luck to you. You will improve. I know you will stay optimistic. Bye
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    • Posted

      Yes, all the stones were removed with the ERCP. The stent was placed (and is still in place... will need to be removed in 2-4 weeks) just in case any debris was left behind, and to allow the bile to flow as freely as possible. 
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    • Posted

      Just I had 2 ERCPs prior to surgery and they couldn’t remove my stones due to the large size of the stones. I ended up having open surgery.  I think I’d still ask the question just to have it confirmed.

      Otherwise it could just be that you’ve had surgery and ERCP and that’s a lot of instruments pushing around inside you. Very invasive. You’re bound to be sore. Maybe just your body settling down from this?

      Take it easy. Sleep when you need to, but make sure you move around- walking helps disperse the dreaded gas they pump into you. Eat little and often and reintroduce foods gradually. It takes a little time to get back to normal.

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