Very Depressed

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I am both happy and upset right now. I wish I'd had a little more money saved and gone private as I planned to do, but then had to divert the money to my father for his surgery.

I met my consultant this morning. He was totally wonderful. We had conversed via email beforehand, so I was actually really looking forward to meeting him. It all went very well indeed, He was great. He told me the risks too - but I can't handle that - I know the risks, I just have to live in denial and deal with any chaos should it arise. My BMI was also higher than he first expected, but he said he would be happy to go ahead.

He then sent me off for a couple more tests, after the weigh in and height measure. I had never understood how people knew their height. I hadn't been measured since school and at school without shoes, I'd come in at 5ft 6inches and always said that, but I've shrunk 2 inches. I'm only 34years old, and always thought you shrink after umm... yea.

And my home scales lied to me!!!!! The hospital scales are a stone heavier. My weight was never an issue to me, although seemed to bug others, but I did feel a little deflated about it.

Then after that, he sent me down for pre-assessment (wasn't expecting that so soon, so was hopeful for surgery date very soon). The nurse was horrible! She said my body mass index was \"a huge 38\"! I should be 26 for surgery however, its up to the surgeon, but really I should go away and lose weight. I was shocked at her statement, because the surgeon had said it wasn't ideal by any means, but it was cool enough. I told her since Feb, my weight has dropped 5 stones...she replied, then you should keep trying to lose more. Ummm.... it wasn't by choice in the first place, but just one of the few positives of actually having gallstones! And it's worse for me too as the doctors can't explain why my Arthritis in my ankles is so much worse, when all my life they predicted it would be easier without weight. The only thing they can see is that the fat deposits between my ankle bones, have got smaller - so maybe my joints aren't as support! Grrrr!

Then when I told her about the Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, relating to a car crash and hospitalisation I have, she smothered a giggle when I told her about some sizeist comments I'd over heard the staff make like the one about the 'beached whale in Cubicle 5 that needs a trawler to haul her\" and other such comments. I was then 19.5 stones, and very big, but still wearing size 28 clothing comfortably. And very traumatised after the crash, so it really hit my hard. She composed herself, and said that it was awful, but I 'must have been a sight, strapped to the board\" !!! She added that it was just as well I will have to lead a zero fat lifestyle after surgery. I told her angrily I'm living on chicken drumsticks, fish, and Applejuice and water only since Feb. She said, 'well you shouldn't be frying them'. At which point I gave her a very big peice of my mind. The drumsticks have been roasted skinless, the fish is fresh not breadcrumbed, and baked as it comes from the sea! I have just posted a complaint letter to the hospital.

But anyway..... Then I told her about my OCD. This is a big thing for me. Perhaps bigger to me than the surgery. She bushed it off like it was nothing. Told me to just 'deal with it'. I couldn't make her understand how big a deal my anxiety is. I asked her to put it in my notes that I will be a panic stricken mess on the day, due to OCD, and would need 'kid-glove' handling. She said no, it wasn't necessary. But when she was out of the room, I added it in there myself - I didn't care.

Then the kicker. I have been in pain since January, and finally caved in and went to start the ball rolling in February. Under NHS rules the whole thing for this type of surgery, is meant to take 18 weeks. I am on my 25th week. As I am so bad at the moment, I am not fit to work, as I can't sit up for long, and am in constant pain, I have been praying for a date very soon - the mental battle is killing me. Unfortunately, my doctor didn't write immediately to the surgeon, and the nurse said its 18weeks from the date on the letter....that was July 17th! I can't believe it.

I'm so upset. I've been sitting here waiting all this time watching the world pass by my window, while my finances plummet around me . I want a job again, I want my life back, I want to be pain free, and more than anything in the world, I so very desperately want to go to Germany for a weekend, and see my boyfriend who is now staying out there for the foroeseeable future now. I just can't sit up that long at the moment. The surgeon said I can't fly for 6-8 weeks after surgery. And then I'd need stockings and injections in my tummy against Deep Vein Thrombosis....why the injections!!!!! But it basically means I won't be able to see him until next year March time, and the money is fast falling away. I'm so very upset right now.

Sorry for the rant. I'm just so upset with everything. And at the back of my mind, my brain is still screaming that there is something wrong with removing the gallbladder when so many people report issues afterwards, and why hasn't medical science come up with a way of preserving the gallbladder. And the fear is that it turns out bad, and I am stuck with the issues for the rest of my life......and yet, I can't live like I am now.

Massive Apologies for the rant. I was fine-ish before the horrible pre-assessment nurse made me depressed and anxious about it all again.

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8 Replies

  • Posted

    What an awful experience for you. I weighed 15st 11 and lost 4 stones due to the gallstones etc. I was lucky enough to see a wonderful surgeon, as a NHS patient but at a private hospital. I thought he would make some comment about my weight, but he did not. In fact he made me feel at ease when it was me who mentioned my weight to him, by saying that he fitted gastric bands and that I was no way near as big as some patients he had to operate on. I was 17st something when I had my hernia done in 1997 and the consultant then said he was fine with doing it.

    Don't allow people to speak to you in that way. They are way out of line and you should stop them before they carry on. How rude they are and very ignorant. You must stand up for your rights and demand the op. You cannot go on this way. Don't give up heart.

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  • Posted

    I am still so upset about the words of the pre-assessment nurse. I feel so stupid about feeling this way anyway. Could be nerves again I guess. I'm justso worried about having it and then regretting it, and not being able to go back. And her comment of \"you will never be able to eat anything with any fats ever again\" didn't help, I know I will have to be extremely careful, but how on earth - in this day and age - can you live a fat free diet? - there is even fats in some fruits!

    Im upset, fed up of being in the limbo of waiting, in pain, anxious, and confused, and I know I'm just whining now, but I just want to go to see my guy and have a big hug, and let him convince me again, that it will all be ok.

    So sorry for the outpouring.

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  • Posted

    jinny - before i got ill with gallstones i was a size 22 - from my first admission it was 7 months till i got surgery and as a result i was in a size 12 when i had it ( i was on a fat free diet all that time) in a 2 year period following sugery i went up a size (i developed a large incisional hernia from the open op i has as i was allergic to the absorbable sutures - following my hernia op i still had aborbable suture rejected through the wound from the first op) although it had not been used in the repair.

    when i went to clinic i was told by the registrar that i could not have my op and would have to go back in three months to clinic when i had lost a stone (yes a wee tad overwieght but onlly a size 14) he also told me i had had aneasetic problems due to my weight with my gallbladder op - i pointed out i was a size smaller at the time and had had a problem as they had given me gelifusin when i told them i had a meat protien allergy!! he said and that too!!

    when i went back 3 monts later i saw a different dr who could not understand why i had been not listed - i told her it was her collegue had said i was over wieght and an aneasetic risk - this was not written in my notes - so i asked if it was prehaps some way of keeping me off the list untill the new budgets came into effect (silience!!)' well i see no reason not to list you now' (april) funny that - these people are gate keepers and protect there bugets well in advance.

    i hope you get some possitive news soon.


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  • Posted

    I can't shake this downer. Its ridiculous. I can't even sleep at night much any more. I'm a wreck, and am bursting into tears at the slightest thing. My Doctor said I just have to deal with it. It's so stressful. :cry:

    The words of that nurse have shaken me up, but also my mum's Post Cholecystectomy Syndrome is so much worse at the moment, and she constantly tells me about it, or I hear her on the toilet whimpering in pain, even though I tell her that I'm sorry I can't handle hearing about the downside to the op, could she stop telling me all the details. But She won't. And it's not easy to escape the mother, when you live in the tiny, thin walled house with her and have nowhere else to hide. I'm so scared of ending up like her. She hasn't been able to leave the house in over a week because of the pain in her guts and there is nothing the Doctors can do to help her, or stop the pain or the explosive Diarrhoea if she eats anything at the moment - they simply said it is her PCS. In short - this visual and audio daily bombardment from her, is leaving me terrified of my future and that along with the nurse's pep-talk - I'm just losing the plot.

    The only good thing is that everyday now, I am getting up, and forcing myself to go for an hours walk every day, and then do an hours workout on my Ijoy/Iride exercise machine. It does hurt in my gallbladder when I do that quite a lot, so I slow down until the pain eases and then pick up again, but I'm doing it to strengthen my back and abdomen muscles for the strains of surgery, and then I also am doing 20mins Poi Spinning, to loosen my shoulders because I want them to be as flexible as possible to accommodate and help dissipate the gas they pump you up with. It's a big step for me to get out every day, because being upright for long periods of time hurts, but the only downside is that there is no-one I can walk with, and we don't have a dog, and I've found that even with a walkman, it intensifies the thinking time. And thinking time is not what I need right now at all.

    I just feel so desperately scared of everything. Obviously, no-one can tell me how it will turn out, but I am so scared of being back in pain as I was years ago, and the effect on my IBS, and/or having the explosive diarrhoea, dumping thing that everyone talks of after eating.

    I'm left just running through getting things sorted out on a practical level, so I can be fairly self sufficient, for a week after the op myself, as my family are lacking completely in support, and so help will be very limited. And that is unnerving me too.

    For those that have had surgery, so you think it would be better to be in a flat bed, or would sleeping in a recliner chair be a better option?

    Also, what did you do that worked, for you during the initial recovery time? Any hints, or tricks that made your life easier ?

    Sorry to whine - I just need to share with people who might understand better than non-gallstone sufferers.

    Thanks for listening

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  • Posted

    I think it is best to remember everyone recovers differently. Some people only have the gallbladder problem. Others have other conditions as well as gallstones so recovery is going to be different. After the op take your time with things. Introduce foods back slowly. Eat little and often. Drink plenty of water.

    I have felt that recovery was slow for me but I am 62, had several ops, and still have Barrett's and large hiatus hernia. I was getting severe back pain and nausea until recently then I saw I saw my GP who realised that I had a full bowel (so far not had the horrible runs some people have) and that I have another small hernia lower in the abdomen(no action needed to be taken on that yet) and that my Vitiman B level in my blood was low (can be the result of taking Omeprazole etc). She put me on Normacol fibre granules and Vit B tablets. I am feeling much better but still have off days ,usually when I need to go to the loo. I am still very careful what I eat and I don't touch meat. It's boring but I would rather feel well. Camomile tea is soothing as a last drink of the evening (not too late).

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  • Posted

    We'd be lying if we said you'll be perfectly fine, you certainly will have a few 'oh no' moments (days) but these are nothing compared to the constant grind of having a scabby incompetent Gallbladder smoldering away in there smile Your mum needs the attention of a good GP as theres no need for her to be moaning and suffering to such an extent :?
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  • Posted

    Well, I am in the same boat. Ineed the surgery but I am terified they will say i am too fat. i can;t take this pain much longer.

    Like you I can fit into a size 28 loosely, a 26 in some things. But I am 6ft 3" so I am hopeing it will be OK.

    The thing that makes me mad, we are probably too "thin" to be considered for gastric band surgery or similar and yet they would do that - same anasthetics?

    I have come to the conclusion it is an excuse to keep you off their precious waiting lists.


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  • Posted

    Hi again,

    well I met with the anaethsatist at the hospital and his thoughts were "your weight does increase the risks a little" so he noted me an moderate risk (not even "HIGH"). They did the op and I am fine.


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