Mild Left Side Pain with Gallstones

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I've had some troublesome symptoms for about two years now. I have... 

1. A dull ache just below my left lower rib that increases in severity depending on how I eat. I can't tell exactly what makes it hurt more.. what I eat, how often I eat.. how much.. I can just tell that sometimes its worse. Though a post meal smoothie with lots of greens seems to help a lot.

2. Gallstones. Pain on the right side near the bottom of my ribs. Sometimes the pain radiates up into my right shoulder blade.

3. Itching without any rash. I itch all over my body. It seems to be greatly reduced by exercise.. the more intense the exercise it seems like the greater the relief. Before I figured this out I was scratching sores into my skin to the point where I have permanent scars now.

4. Weight loss. I started losing weight initially after recognizing I needed to make a lifestyle change. I was 6'5" and 240 - 250 lbs and obese. I started losing weight rapidly with minimal effort and only minor lifestyle changes. In 6 months I'd dropped to 230 lbs. Starting in January I got a lot more concerned about my health and got a lot more diligent about dieting and exercise. I lost about 40 lbs since January leaving me with 190 lbs on my 6'5" frame. 

5. Tapeworms. I've seen several tapeworms in my stool. These were passed during enemas. In this loose material the tapeworms were easy to spot and identify. I have pictures.

6. Oily foul smelling stools. I've since started taking pancreatic enzymes which greatly relieved this symptom but the original cause is most likely still there.

7. Hiatal hernia. I don't notice many symptoms from this.

8. Acid Reflux. Since my diet/lifestyle changes I don't notice much from this either.

9. Chronic Constipation. I've had chronic constipation for the last 20 years.

I've had an ultrasound that revealed gallstones and an upper endoscopy that revealed the hiatal hernia and what the GI said was inflammation he would expect to see in most anyone's stomach. A colonoscopy performed at the same time showed my colon to be "pristine" according to the GI. 

All blood work is normal. Amylase/lipase levels normal, normal liver function, normal kidney function, excellent lipid panel, excellent CBC.

I was diagnosed by two mental health professionals with OCD. I know anxiety such as mine can greatly affect my ability to deal with this rationally but that doesn't necessarily de-legitimize my fears. I know a lot of things fly under the radar for a long time, sometimes beyond the point where anything can be done.  I'm concerned about chronic pancreatitis. Or possibly, the pain I feel in my left side could be caused by the mild inflammation the GI saw in my stomach.

Any thoughts?

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4 Replies

  • Posted

    Wow - I'm not medically trained so cannot answer your list of questions but my dietitian recommend sprinkling some Linseeds (Flaxseeds) onto my breakfast cereals to help with constipation.

    Just another question - have your Vitamin B12 and Folate (B9) levels been tested?

    I wish you well

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    • Posted

      Thanks for the reply Clive.

      I have not had B12 or Folate tested. I know parasites such as tapeworms can lead to B12 deficiency. I supplement regularly with B12 as well as a B Complex. Aside from parasites, what would those deficiencies pertain to?


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    • Posted

      Not sure what the question means - all I know is that if the tapeworms etc affect absorption of nutrients supplementing orally may not be sufficient.

      Symptoms of B12 deficiency tend to develop slowly and may not be recognised immediately. As the condition worsens, common symptoms include:

      Weakness and fatigue

      Light-headedness and dizziness

      Palpitations and rapid heartbeat

      Shortness of breath

      A sore tongue that has a red, beefy appearance

      Nausea or poor appetite

      Weight loss


      Yellowish tinge to the skin and eyes

      If low levels of B12 remain for a long time, the condition also can lead to irreversible damage to nerve cells, which can cause the following symptoms:

      Numbness and tingling in the hands and feet

      Difficulty walking

      Muscle weakness


      Memory loss




       As I say, I am not a medically trained person but I've had Pernicious Anaemia (a form of B12 deficiency) for more than 46 years and have an "under performing" pancreas as a result of gastric surgery 59 years ago.


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    • Posted

      I just meant which of my symptoms could have been explained by deficiency in B12 or Folate. Your answer was good though. 

      I've had some of that. The weight loss, palpatations, lightheadedness.. I go to the doc tomorrow. I'll mention those to him.

      Thanks again for the reply.


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