Seeking Advice on Gallbladder Problem.

Updated on February 19, 2008
A.G. asks from Montclair, CA
53 answers

I have to have my gall bladder taken out and I am scared to death about it.

What can I do next?

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A.G.

answers from Los Angeles on

I had to have mine removed after my second pregnancy. It is much less painful than a c-section since it is just laproscopy. In fact, having the gallstones in was muuuuch more painful than taking them out. Peace of cake, you'll be fine!

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K.H.

answers from San Diego on

Do a gallbladder cleanse. It only take one day. You will pass stones! It is crazy. Google the recipe. It it Epsom salt, olive oil and grapefruit juice.

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L.L.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hi A.,
A dear friend of mine passed away last year after being hopspitalized for months.She was in her seventies, and apparently her problem stemmed from NOT having her gall bladder removed when it was recommended thirty some years ago. Her husband told me,to tell anyone I know that if a dr. tells them to have their gall bladder removed to do it.
Hope this helps. Good Luck.

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A.K.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hi A.,

I jsut turned 40 yrs old. My mother and sister both had their gallb;adders removed before the age of 40.

I had my gall bladder taken out (non-emergency) 2 yrs ago when doctors discovered gall stones. I was 38 yrs old. The unexplained pain I was suffering from for 2-3 yrs did subside following the suregery so that was a relief to me. However, I was unknowingly pregnant at the time of the surgery so I recommend that you take a pregnancy test no mattter what before they operate. The hospital deos not do it automatically. My baby is miraclously a healthy 17 month old today, but it was all very scary and disconcerting at the time.

As far as living today without a gall bladder, I became very ill following the surgery and the(cesarean)birth of my baby. Today I have major, debiltating digestive issues, including leaky gut, gluten intolerance and IBS that I am challenged with. It is sometimes possible to deal with gall bladder issues through diet and without surgery. I did not know this before I had my surgery. Alternative therapies and Diet are not quick fixes, like surgeries seem to be. I urge anyone who is contemplating non-emergencey surgery to exhaust all other avenues first. That is what i would do if I was to do it all over again. Although it is a relatively "easy" surgery with minimal recovery, it is still taking out an organ from your body that is there for a reason. Sometimes it has to come out. And sometimes, a surgeon will convince us that if they take it out,all will be well. In my case, all is not well. In fact, I ahve been told by subsequent doctors ath too many abdominal surgeries, too many antibiotics and multiple pregnancies are the casue of my current condition today. The surgery, including the anesthesia and painkillers, etc, was a huge burden for my body. My doctors insisted that I would not need bile pills,etc, but my digestive system is a complete mess and I am on a very restricted diet now and I take digestive enzymes which sometimes work and sometimes don't. Our digestive sytem is 60% of the immune system. It is all interconnected so you should just understand this completely before letting anyone remove an organ from your body.

If your body continues to produce gall stones and you have tried everything else, you may need to have your gall bladder removed. That procedure is relatively mild as far as surgeries go. Also, you may feel an emptiness in the area where your gall baldder was. Over time, the area will rebuild scar tissue and then you will not have the discomfort or feel as if you are missing something. Time does heal.

Best of luck to you!

Dana

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B.L.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hi A.,
I had my gallbladder out in 2000, after 2 gallbladder attacks, which were excruciatingly painful. The actual surgery was pretty straightforward. In my experience, they removed the gallbladder through 2 places- a small incision through the belly button area and one just below my bust area. Both incisions are about 3/4 of an inch. I was sore afterwards for about a week, but I think the recovery time was very quick. I don't even think twice about it now.

Considering those attacks I had prior to removal, I am glad I got it taken out. I have not noticed any negative effects from not having the gallbladder.

Best wishes for a speedy recovery!

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A.S.

answers from Las Vegas on

Hi! My name is Sharon, and I work in day surgery center in a hospital, and I would have been scared to death too, BEFORE working in surgery. The gallbladder operation is a piece of cake - you go home the same day. If you have a laser surgery, it's even easier. Don't worry, you'll do just fine!! Good Luck! Sharon U

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A.S.

answers from Los Angeles on

I had mine out when I was 40, and it was no big deal. I did it because I was afraid I would have an attack when I was alone with my baby, or when I would be driving, and could not do anything about it. You wont have to worry about it any more. Just think positive.

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N.M.

answers from Los Angeles on

You will be fine!!!! I had to have mine out three weeks after giving birth and I was scared too. I went to sleep, woke up and it was done. I wasn't able to really walk the first two days only because your midsection is pretty sore; but other than that it was no big deal at all. Good luck!!!!

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L.L.

answers from Las Vegas on

Hi, A., I was 57 when I had my gall bladder removed and it was done with micro surgery so all I had was a couple of little scars on my tummy and I was up and going strong in about 4 days. Actually my experience was quite pleasant and all went well. Nothing I eat now bothers me and I'm glad I had it done. Good luck and be optimistic.

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B.T.

answers from San Luis Obispo on

I had my gall bladder removed while I was pregnant with my first child. It is a pretty common procedure now. You should do just fine with it. Are you worried about the actual surgery or getting knocked out? The recovery is quick. I think it was a little more painful for me because my tummy was growing while my body was healing. But it was very manageable.

Share your concerns with your doctor. He/She should be comforting to you. I have had procedures done with a doctor who I did not feel comfortable with and that was terrifying for me. If you don't feel comfortable with your doctor, then find another one.

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K.J.

answers from Los Angeles on

I was in my very early 30's when I had my first gall bladder attack. After all was said and done, I only had two attacks that sent me screaming to the ER for Morphine before I agreed to have the surgery to remove it. The surgery is very simple, quick and you recover in about a weekend. I felt better immediately and haven't had any problems since.

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E.S.

answers from San Diego on

Try to not to be afraid. I am 28 years yo old and last year i had it down and I'm glad. The horrid pain is not here. i was in the hospital for a week and 3days and only cause i wound up with pancreatitis. Which is why especially you need it out stones can block it and cause much more harm to you. You do not necessarily need a gallbladder. As for lifestyle change you just need to eat healthier. No more hamburgers from fastfood or anything supergreasy or fried. there might be other foods you might not tolerate well as well. I'd recommend going to Traders Joe which for literally pennies more you can get the healthiest food. Many supermarkest carry extra lean as well. The surgery is usually down by laser as it cuts down on recovery and leads to fewer scars. It doesn't hurt to get the few staples outif it wasn't for the fact i just literally had a baby (she was 3 weeks old when I went in) oh and the pancreatitis it would have been only about 2 1/2 to 3 weeks. Good luck i hope this helps

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B.S.

answers from Visalia on

Hi Anne G.,
I had mine out a few years ago. I had no problems. They only cut a very little incision from your naval. I was up & around in no time. You will be just fine. I was older than you are, when I had mine out. Don't worry about it. Let me know how it goes.
Blessings, Barb

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L.A.

answers from San Diego on

Don't worry! It is an extremely simple surgical procedure with a relatively quick recovery time. You will never miss it.

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A.L.

answers from Las Vegas on

I had my gallbladder out 8 years ago. It really was not a big deal, they did a laproscopic procedure & the heal time was just days. I had mine done when my daughter who is now 9 was about one. The gall bladder attack was MUCH worse than the surgery EVER could have been.... :)

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L.I.

answers from San Luis Obispo on

Hello A.,
I had my first gallbladder attack when my son was 3 wks old, and it was finally removed when he was 8 mos. old. Those attacks were terrible! I had a c-section w/ my son and I was sick of doctors. But the surgery wasn't that bad. Four small scars, one for the light, a camera, something to blow up your abdomen with air and the surgery itself. Now, coming off a c-section, I was ready. Just know that you will have pain in your left shoulder, that will move down and finally be passed. The pain is gas. Take your vicodin and you should be fine in a couple of days. Really, so much better than having those attacks. ugh! Hope this helps.
L.

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B.K.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hi there~ I had my gallbladder removed via laporoscopy about 8 years ago. As far as surgery goes, it was pretty simple...you can't even see my incisions anymore really. I remember it took about 2 weeks to 'feel right' again. The worst part was that the incision for the scope in your bellybutton ~ it took the longest to heal. The only other memory really was that it 'really hurt to laugh' that first week.

As far as the 'aftermath' I don't really notice too much of a difference in what I can eat...just that really fatty foods make me feel bad so I avoid them, which isn't a bad thing, right? It was just such a relief not to have the pain from the failing gallbladder, ya know?

If you are still nursing, you might experience more discomfort is my final thought...

Good luck

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D.W.

answers from San Diego on

I had my gallbladder removed 3 years ago. I had no problems with it. My doctor did it laprosopically (spelling?) and I have 5 small dots on my torso.
There was not much pain and I healed quickly. Leave your fears behind and feel better after the surgery.
God Bless you
D.

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L.M.

answers from Los Angeles on

I just had mine out and it was an easier recovery than child birth! Good luck!

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K.B.

answers from Los Angeles on

Having my gallbladder removed was the BEST thing ever! I have several attacks and the ER doctor knew my name and so did the nurses. My primary care doctor didn't seem to give a rats behind about my problem. We moved to another state and from all the stress I had two more attacks and the last one landed me with an emergency surgery. Since the surgery I have had ZERO problems and have no regrets. It took me about a week to bounce back. I have three 1/2 inch tiny scars from the "lap coli" procedure. My mother-in-law had it done back in the 70's and she has this HUGE ugly scar from it. Back then it was major surgery.
The one thing they didn' tell me is that you need to be mindful of what you eat. Nothing fried or oily, nothing too spicy. This is an overshare but I had horrible diarhea. I adjusted my diet and after a while I was fine. I lost 10 pounds after the diet change, but hey my jeans fit better and I felt great.

Good luck! Be positive about the whole thing and it will all go well.

K.

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S.B.

answers from Los Angeles on

I had my gall bladder removed in Dec '04. I was only 30 at the time. I was kind of scared but it was emergency surgery so I didn't have a lot of time to think about it and just wanted the PAIN TO STOP! The recovery time was 2-4 weeks and lifting things was painful. I would get a parent or friend to stay with you for a week or so to help with your 1 year old. YOu're not going to feel up to being a mom for a little while. THe surgery itself only took an hour and 1/2. Have you ever been under before? If not, that is probably the reason for your fear. The first time is the scariest, for sure. If you have any questions, e-mail me at [email protected]____.com I'm S..
Good Luck and you'll feel better soon!

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A.O.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hi A.,

I had my gall bladder out a couple of years ago - it was no problem. I went home the same day. My doctor told me to stick to a non-fat diet for about 10 days after the surgery, which was great because I managed to lose a couple of pounds.

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K.H.

answers from Los Angeles on

Any surgery is scary but think about it this way... it's not a life-threatening problem like cancer or worse (I hope it's not more than that for you!) that you need to deal with. Just a temporary discomfort and a slight change in lifestyle like not eating spicy or greasy foods which may not be such a bad thing.

Haven't had my gall bladder out but did have an emergency laparascopic appendectomy at age 44 about 9 months ago (right before school let out and the night of my preschooler's graduation!)and previous to that two c-sections and a laparoscopy procedure for fertility issues. I'm no stranger to surgery and have been lucky to have very little complications from the surgeries.

My step-mom-in-law had her gallbladder out and is doing fine. She just has to watch what she eats and is happy to have lost some weight due to better eating habits.

If you're having a laparoscopic procedure, the recovery time is way less than a full "cut you up" surgery. You may have 2-3 little 1 inch incisions... 1 on either side of your body and 1 right near your belly button. Way better than having a 4 inch incision (like my 1st unplanned c-section) and having to be careful lifting stuff for over a month. Not to mention being a first time mom with the 1st c-section and having difficulty breastfeeding!

I hope you have access to some child-care during your recovery period. If you can avoid it you shouldn't lift anything after your first week (to be safe) then after two weeks to a month keep it light... no more than 10-20 pounds.

Try to train your child NOW to take lots of hugs instead of "pick me up's". It's going to be tough to refuse to pick up your child for over a week, but you're need to so you can heal properly and don't have any possible complications. If you haven't stopped nursing, now is the time to wean.

1 year old's are really hard to care for since they are just mobile enough to get into lots of trouble! I hope you baby-proofed your entire home already. If you can't do it there are services that will baby-proof your home. Set up a baby-proofed area for your child to play in - close to where you plan to rest after surgery. You'll recover faster if you can rest and not have to keep on getting up and chasing a 1 year old out of trouble spots!

You might want to go to the library or ask your pediatrician for a good book on dealing with separation from your child while you're in the hospital. If your child was older, there are books talking about family members going to the hospital that explain how mommy or daddy has to stay there to get well, etc.

Best wishes and hope you have a speedy recovery. Hope your child doesn't have terrible separation issues either!

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A.P.

answers from Los Angeles on

I had mine taken out at the age of 39. It is a common problem with women our age and above. it was a simple procedure. There are four little incisions and you are home the same day. If you have it done the other way, the healing time is longer of course. I am so glad mine is out! Caution! As weird as it sounds, I use to have the ache on the top portion of my rib cage to my right lower back even after the surgery. It was not as intense but annoying! I have not had it in a long time. I was told that was pretty common too. It happened to 2 of my other friends as well. I feel great now. Good luck!

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V.B.

answers from San Luis Obispo on

I had mine out 2 weeks after a C-Section!!! Talk about being scared! LOL! It wasnt so bad, it will most likley be a liproscopic procedure so you wont have a big insicison to deal with but you will be sore and have 3 little incisions (bellybutton, and eiter side of your abdomn) They will pump you full of air so they can see what there doing in there that is the most uncomfortable part of recovery!You will have to pass gass and go to the bathroom while under observation that sucks! Not to bad though 100 x's better then gaulbladder attacks I tell you that! Your gaulbladdr is your grease trap so stay away from high fat and greasy foods they will upset your tummy and cause direaha (with a grease layer on top of the water! LOL!You will be fine don't worry!

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J.B.

answers from Las Vegas on

I do gallbladder flushes often to get rid of the stones. Medical Doctors do not believe that anyone can get rid of stones from their gallbladder but they are wrong. Years ago these painless flushes were routine for patients with gallbladder problems until they discovered surgery. You might research about gallbladder flushes. If you google "Dr. Hulda Clark liver/gallbladder flush" you will find lots of information, pictures and the recipe for the flush. It's sooo easy to do, I just did one this week and feel SO much better since it had almost been a year since my last one.

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D.M.

answers from Los Angeles on

I had my gallbladder removed just after my second child. I had no problem what so ever with the surgery. It was quick and the recovery only took a couple of days. I have three tiny scars on my abdomen to show for it (the doctor even repaired a small hernia for me while he was near by bellybutton!) and that's it. I had terrible attacks and it was worth not going through them anymore! Don't worry...you should do great! Just one quick suggestion that I was given I will pass along. I was told to keep Gas-x on hand to dispell the gas while recovering and that helped me a lot. Good luck!

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W.J.

answers from Los Angeles on

You need to find out the proceedure your surgeon plans to use. You should also tell your fears to your doctor. If they are going to use a scope and make a small incision on you abdomen that is very easy to heal from. There should be no fear from this surgery. It is very common and we really don't need our gallbladder. The gladder only stores bile.

You will heal very quickly! Good luck to you!

by the way I am an RN.

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L.K.

answers from San Diego on

Hi A.,
I had my gall bladder out when my children were very young and I was 35 years old. Both of my grandmothers had gall bladder problems and one died of it so I didn't hesitate. I asked the doctor if I didn't need it and he said it hadn't been working right anyway so it would be fine. I felt like a walking time bomb until I had it out. One thing you should be aware of, though, is that you need to be careful of your intake of fats after you have it out. You can gain weight easily if you aren't careful. It will be great after it's out because you won't have to worry about having an attack. I actually had an attack while in labor with my second child. It wasn't fun. You should be fine if you don't eat too many fatty foods after it's out.
L.

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T.T.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hi A.,
I had my gallbladder taken out 9yrs. ago, it really is a quick procedure, and recovery time depends on you. Taking it easy and definitely not doing anything strenuous. You might have to be careful with certain foods. I occasionally get a slight pain in my side when I eat spicy
foods. Ask you Doctor they'll advise you.
Try not to worry it will be alright.

Maria T.
Highland, CA

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J.S.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hi A.,

I am an Altearnative Health Practitioner and I would recommend some alternative things before having your gallbladder removed. I have been able to help 6 people who were scheduled for surgery not to have it. Cleansing is an important component of the program. We have several different service we can offer to help you. Check out our website at www.kaysnutrition.com. You can e-mail me at [email protected]____.com

Just know that surgery is not the only option. Gallbladder surgery is the most common surgery. Don't become one more statistic until you have tried all other things.

J. Sanders
Alternative Health Practitioner

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A.D.

answers from Las Vegas on

Hi, i had my gallbladder out a year ago. The operation is easy, but they fail to tell you, you need to take bile pills after. I found a very good cold bile pill i take before i eat(about 3 a day) it helps with the digestive system. You can order these or find them at your local health store. Good luck. A.

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L.D.

answers from Los Angeles on

I had my gall bladder out about two years ago at age 44 and it was much, much easier than I anticipated. The day after surgery was rough because of the "gas" that they put in your system to expand the surgical area so plan one day with some help and take it very easy. Also, a heating pad helped a lot. But, two days later, I went out to lunch with my husband with no problem.

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R.G.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hi:
I had my gallbladder removed laparoscopically about 2 years ago. I am 37 years old. I don't know if you have it, but I had intolerable pain (worse than childbirth without an epideral!) When I went in to the ER, they gave me a morphine shot to ease the pain. After the surgery, the pain was so severe, they had me on Morphene for a whole day. As soon as I'd have pain, I'd press a button and self-medicate myself. It felt so good. After that first 24 hours, no more morphine and they would just give me a pain shot (demoral). The next day (48 hrs later) I was home and there was no more pain. I was sore for about 2 weeks after the surgery, but a little vicodin took care of it. After the surgery you shouldn't lift anything heavier than 25 lbs for about 3 months to avoid getting any kind of hernia. Well, it's been 2 years, and it's been great. NO MORE PAIN!! I hope this was helpful : )

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J.L.

answers from Santa Barbara on

My husbnad had his gall bladder removed about 5 years ago (when our first child was also 1 year old. He was 44 years old. It was a very simple out-patient procedure and he recovered fully in 1-2 days. It was such a smaller ordeal than either of us had anticipated! You have absolutley nothing to worry about - in fact, if it were me, I'd be looking forward to the couple of days of rest!!! Enjoy.

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P.N.

answers from Los Angeles on

I had gall stone and ended up having a laser procedure and
all went well. My sister had her gall bladder removed and all went well. Do not be afraid there's nothing to it. I tell you one thing........your pain will vanish.
Good luck! oh, I,m 40 and my sister is 39

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M.L.

answers from Los Angeles on

i had my gallbladder taken out. its not a big issue, it being out of your body. the only thing you need to be careful of is dairy foods.
i have a great book for you to read called.

you can heal your life
by louise l hay

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T.M.

answers from Los Angeles on

I had mine taken out about 12 years ago and it was nothing. Very easy surgery and little pain. I was 21 when I had it done and I was scared too, but after it was done, it was nothing! Small scares on the stomach but nothing to be worries about, they are small and the recovery is minor. RELAX and you will be fine!

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G.P.

answers from Los Angeles on

hi A., all i could say is pray. i to will pray for u. i have had surgury 4 times already, and everytime before going in i i have prayed. i wish u the best of luck and god be with u. take care, G.

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C.H.

answers from San Diego on

My mom had hers out, and felt so much better afterwards. She said she wished she'd done it much earlier, it was well worth it. I hope it goes well for you!

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C.T.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hi A.,
I'm 64 years old and retired. Last summer, I made my yearly visit to my family half way across the country in Illinois. On Wednesday morning, I went to Curves to work out as I do every morning. As I finished the workout, I started feeling abdominal cramps and they didn't subside. I turned clammy, became soaking wet with persperation, couldn't catch my breath, could hardly speak. I actually sat in the bathroom for a while thinking it would go away. Finally, I slowly walked to the front and sat down at the membership desk. "Are you alright?" the attendant asked.
"No," I replied. "Do you have any antacids? I'll be ok; this has happened several times before."
"I'm calling 911," the attendant looked worried. "I'm calling 911!"
Yep, sirens blaring, off I went, with the paramedics sticking needles in me and taking pulses and asking questions which I couldn't answer because I still couldn't breathe. Of course, everyone was thinking "heart attack." They stablized me in the ER, shot me with morphine, and the pain finally ended.
I was placed in intensive care where I spent Wednesday night. Thursday they gave me a stress test to check my heart, and a sonogram to check my abdomen. Guess what...GALL STONES! Friday they removed my gall bladder, Saturday I went back to my dad's house, and Sunday I went to the family reunion at a nearby pizza house.
Perhaps it all happened too fast for me to be scared. I certainly didn't have time to think about it. But there wasn't much to it. They don't "cut you open" like they used to (be sure you're getting orthoscopic surgery.) They make 3 puncture holes in the abdomen and one in the belly button and pull the gall bladder out of the bellybutton. You're sore for a week, but I was up walking by Sunday to get my strength back. You need to take it easy for another few weeks and then it's "all better." You also need to watch out for spicey foods, although I haven't had a problem.
I spent an extra week with my dad before taking the plane trip back to California. I was back at Curves in 5 weeks. It's been 7 months and you can hardly see the incision scars. The worst problem I had was finding a bra that wouldn't rub one of the incision areas. They found several gall stones and evidence of multiple gall bladder attacks with scarring of the gall bladder walls. The best thing is ...no more painful attacks, which were much worse than the surgery and recovery.
...and that's how I spent my summer vacation.
Hope this helps.
C. T.

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K.B.

answers from Los Angeles on

You'll be just fine. Sounds like it's not being done as an emergency, so you'll likely have the procedure with three very small (less than half inch) incisions. You'll have pain for a few days and discomfort for a couple weeks, dependent on your current health and fitness. I returned to work after a week. [And actually had the surgery on Christmas Eve . . . then was home on Christmas Day.]

In an emergency, dependent on the inflamation / infection level, you could have the procedure with a larger incision. This would require a longer recovery. My guess is that this will not be necessessary for you.

By the way, you'll likely be able to consume any of your favorite foods afterward -- I LOVE really spicy things and have had no problem.

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L.V.

answers from Los Angeles on

I had my gall bladder removed at the age of 30, shortly after giving birth to my 10 year old. A very simple procedure, in and out of the hopspital in hours. I didn't even have stitches. I can see no side effects and know that if I had not had it removed there was a high risk of pancreantitis (SP?) and possible death. Didn't seem worth it to me. I also discovered post surgery that my gall bladder was way worse than they even antisipated. Very glad that I did it.

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T.M.

answers from Los Angeles on

I had my gall bladder taken out about 6 yrs ago, its a peice of cake they make a teeny tiny incission under your right breast, another incission right below the belly button, all down, I was in the hospital over night. I havd no problem walking or with any pain, the surgery is the easiest one ever. You will be fine up and doing what you did in two day.. three max

Blessings

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S.G.

answers from Los Angeles on

You will be fine, it is realatively painless. I flew home to take care of my mom when she had her gall bladder taken out and she didn't even need me

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C.J.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hi A.,

I have had my gallbladder removed, and I agree with most...The surgery is an easy one, and recovery time is quick due to the newer procedures used. I have to look hard to even see my scars today as they are so small! However, let me say... This maybe contrary to popular opinion, but, I would go with he advice of your DR, and not wait if he/she does not feel that it is feasible to do so. I tried the diet and cleansing programs for almost year before I had to have emergency surgery. I had 5 to 6 stones stuck in my main bile duct, my pancreas was inflamed, and my liver had injury. This was all from waiting. Gall bladder can be dangerous if left unchecked.

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B.M.

answers from Los Angeles on

Dear A.,

I called my doctor in September (I think 1999) and told him my ulcer was acting up - he told me to start taking Zantac again. I saw him in September, and told him my ulcer was still bothering me - he ordered an ultrasound. I found out in January that I had gall stones, and my doctor wanted to see me - I said that I already had an appointment in March, and I would just be in then. I was having pretty regular attacks - maybe up to three a week. My doctor referred me to a surgeon whom I saw in April. I wanted to wait until June, so that I wouldn't have to worry about taking the kids to school, etc . . . My surgeon said that if I had the surgery on Friday, I could take the kids to school Monday morning - I asked if he was sure, he said yes. Then he suggested we do it on a long weekend, so I could take them to school Tuesday morning. We scheduled it for Memorial Day weekend. I had an attack that night - resolved to be very careful about what I ate, and was pain-free for three weeks. I had three attacks the week of my surgery (if my surgeon knew the truth, I would be in soooooooooooooooo much trouble!) I went in Friday morning, had my surgery, and was back home about 10 p.m. The surgery was done laproscopically, so I only have four little tiny scars, and the recovery was not awful. I slept sitting on the couch for about two nights - it hurt to lay flat. I took the kids to school Tuesday morning. I went to the P.T.O. luncheon Wednesday afternoon. My surgeon only gave me a week off (which I still don't think was enough time), but I was part-time, and with the way my days fell, I ended up with two weeks off. I was able to do it, and I have a fairly physical job (I am an x-ray technologist, and at the time, I didn't have a transporter - my first night back, I pushed a 350 lb man from the e.r. clear across the hospital to the other end of my department on a gurney.) And the best part of the whole deal - ? I have been (gall stone)pain-free since! Woohoo! It is wonderful! It is important to have it done - the stones can not only cause pain, but inflammation and/or infection also, this is why I would be in trouble with my surgeon if he knew how many attacks I had between my appointment with him and my surgery. Thankfully I didn't cause serious consequences to my health. Overall, mine was definitely a positive experience . . . !

Good luck!
B.

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B.R.

answers from Las Vegas on

A.,

My husband is having the same problem and the doctor is recommending that he have his gall bladder out. However, we wanted to try to correct the problem naturally if at all possible. After researching it on the internet, he decided to do a gall bladder cleanse. After the second try, he passed many stones. I called our homeopathic doctor to see if she believed that it could be done naturally and she said "yes". I told her about the cleanse and she said not to do that because the gall bladder is emptying stones so fast that one could get caught in the duct. She recommended taking "stonefree" which are pills that you get at some health food stores. She said that they would dissolve the stones. She said that she herself had an attack seven years ago and took the "STONEFREE" and she has never had another attack and she can eat anything that she wants. You can research it on "CUREZONE" under gall bladder and decide for yourself. My husband is taking the pills and is doing great so far. Good luck to you.

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C.G.

answers from Los Angeles on

hi! both my husband and i had ours removed. it was no problem. of course there will be pain after the surgery and that last about a week or so. i went back to work a week and a half after the surgery.

good luck!!

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C.C.

answers from Los Angeles on

Dear A.,

I had my gall bladder taken out about 15 years ago and it wasn't bad at all. I had the orthroscopic (I think that's what it's called) procedure where they made only a few very small holes so there is really no scarring. I was a little sore for a few days, but boy was it worth it! I had suffered so much pain for such a long time and since I had the surgery everything has been great. I have no problems eating spicy foods or garlic, things that bothered me before. Really, it's not bad at all so don't be scared. It's not a long surgery either, so you won't need too much anestesia either. Try and be as positive as possible which I think is really important when having surgery. A positive outlook helps a lot with the healing.
A little about me:
I'm a stay at home mom with two boys almost 5 and 2 years.
Best wishes,
C. C.

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D.R.

answers from Los Angeles on

Me too! I just found out on 2/7 that I have gallstones. I am scared to death to "go under" but not of anything else. If I can survive a C-section then laproscopic gallbladder surgery shouldn't be too much of a problem. I know you'll be out of commission for a couple of days but many people I've spoken to say its not too big a deal. Better than dealing w/ the gall bladder attacks I say. The past few days I've been feeling bad in the afternoons, not a full attack, but just feeling not so good. I welcome the surgery so I wont have to feel this way any longer but must admit I am afraid to go under general anesthesia. Good luck to you!!

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D.D.

answers from San Diego on

Hi A.,
I know four people who have had their gall bladders removed, and all came through healthy and happy. It is a relatively common surgery. I watched my mom recover recently, and she is so glad she did it. Also - you have given birth to a child and survived your first year! You can do anything!

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A.G.

answers from Las Vegas on

The pain of the gallbladder attacks were FAR worse than getting it out!

I had gallstones while pregnant and had to have emergency surgery to remove the gallbladder the day after giving birth. My recovery was a bit longer than most because I had JUST had a baby and my liver and pancreas were infected and I had multiple stones stuck in the bile duct. Not fun! But I have 4 little scars and it was not a big deal.

I was 19 and very very hormonal and upset because I had never had surgery and I was terrified I would die and leave my 1 day old baby without a mother, but it is usually a very simple surgery and way worth not having the pain of the attacks anymore.

As for afterwards, some people get bile salt diarrhea from eating certain foods, but the vast majority do not. (TMI but for me I can't eat any greasy chicken wings without needing to be within a few feet of a bathroom lol) but otherwise things are fine.

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