Anyone had their gallbladder removed?

Discussion in 'Off-topic' started by psrumors, Oct 12, 2010.

  1. psrumors

    psrumors Well-Known Member

    The wife is having hers removed Oct 20th and just trying to figure out what to expect. Doc says at least a week and upwards of two weeks recovery.

    They are doing this via laparoscopic.

    The last time she had surgery, 2004, she contracted a staff infection which caused SEVERE hemolytic anemia. It was literally touch and go for 4 days, the doctors didn't think she would recover. So we are a little anxious.
  2. inkdaddy

    inkdaddy Member

    Had mine removed the same way 15 years ago......and my wife had hers removed a year ago this coming January at Emory. If you wife is in good health otherwise, recovery time is usually back to work within 2 weeks. Scarring is very very small and should heal quickly. She should be able to eat anything her heart desires after the surgery. The only thing I would caution her on after recovery is that with the gallbladder missing food digestion is a little different when it comes to eating anything fried or greasy. Until her body re-adjusts, she might want to stay close to a bathroom, if she is eating fried or greasy foods for the first few months. It tends to go right through you very quickly and in the beginning with very little warning. She can talk to her doctor about this more in detail. Other than that she will feel like a brand new person especially if she has been in a lot of pain, like I was and my wife was.....good luck to really is a simple procedure

  3. Adam5

    Adam5 Atlanta Overwatch


    This is the same experience we had with my wife. She had hers taken out about two years ago.
  4. spotco2

    spotco2 New Member

    Nobody in my family still has theirs and none of us miss it.

    Mine was taken out 5 years ago. Best thing I ever did.

    Recovery is not bad. Just make sure she walks as much as she can for the first couple of days to get the air out of her body. If she does not walk, then the air will gather in her body cavity and it feels like horrible indigestion in your chest.

    I hope everything goes well.
  5. Gunstar1

    Gunstar1 Administrator

    Same here, roughly 2 weeks. I will echo staying far away from grease and fat until she is fully healed, and work into it slowly... don't treat her to a catfish fry or a big burger with fries soon after surgery.

    Also eat pleanty of snacks between meals (crackers work fine) and don't skip meals. The bile will constantly be sent to the stomach and if too much builds up without any food then there will be a need to quickly get to the bathroom (similar to if grease or fat was eaten, but worse).

    Do note though that about a week into it she may feel much better and ready to go back to work... that would be a mistake I made. For the most part the pain was not that much while moving around by the one week mark but what I did not consider was the stamina of those muscles. It may not hurt to lean over to answer a phone or to type on a computer while you are doing it, but if you do it all day you will be very sorry the next few days.

    Final bit of info, get some STRONG scented air spray/candles/whatever because some of the smells that will be produced on a trip to the bathroom will literally make you gag.
  6. mathar1

    mathar1 New Member

    AMEN x1000! Do NOT assume you are good to go after a few days. Mine was a bit more..(they took my spleen while they were in there) and I felt damn good after a week. Went back to work and ended up laying on the floor in the office from the pain/nausea.Ended up missing another 10 days.... :cantsay:
  7. psrumors

    psrumors Well-Known Member

    Thanks for all the info!!! She is excited and nervous. This aint her first rodeo with surgery but after 2004 she is just uneasy but she wants relief. She has been having symptons since June.
  8. spector

    spector New Member

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    Gluten = bad. For everyone. It just manifests itself strongly in those predisposed to it.

    OP, Best of luck to your wife. I bring up the gluten issue because galbladder trouble is usually a symptom of a greater problem. It's a canary in the coal mine. You can manage fine without one (as others have said) but without removing the cause, you're likely going to run into problems with auto-immunity/inflammation (chron's, IBS, arthritis, asthma, , atherosclerosis, etc) down the road. Food for thought.
  9. bgs210

    bgs210 Luggage Killer

    June 2008

    I had suffered with gallbladder symptoms for YEARS!!! For. Too. Many. Years!!!
    The straw that broke the camel's back - VBS at church, we do a full meal for the kids and the workers. Sunday night was Breakfast for Supper(tm). Grits, eggs, sausage, ham, bacon, biscuits, etc. That put me in such pain. Usually it would ease after a couple of hours. A trip to the ER around 1 AM and the most STUPID ER doctor I have ever seen, sent home around 5 AM. Saw the family doc the next morning and was admitted. Ultrasound and other test on Monday. IV's and antibiotics for two days. Surgery on Wednesday afternoon.

    Only one stone - the size of a Peewee hen egg!!!


    Gallbladder was the size of an medium Baking Potato.

    I went back to work on 11 days later.

    I had a bit of the crushed stone that was left behind and got stuck in the common bile duct. But that's another story (and another surgery 5 weeks later)...

    I will be praying for your wife and you... Let us know post-op!!!
  10. vr6glidriver

    vr6glidriver New Member

    My mother had hers removed several years ago, pretty much the same symptoms and recovery path/timeline as above - not sure if there's anything else I can add other than prayers for a successful surgery and speedy recovery!
  11. gsusnake

    gsusnake Token Liberal Hippie

    Only thing I can add to the great info presented above is to hold a pillow kinda tight across your stomach to cough, sneeze, or go to the bathroom. It'll help with some of the muscle strain.

    I had mine out in 2006 and only thing I miss is the ability to eat fried foods without having to have a bathroom close at hand 15 minutes or so after the meal.
  12. BirdMan

    BirdMan Active Member

    Maybe write, "REMOVE GALLBLADDER ONLY" across her stomach in sharpie before she goes under the knife. Can't be too careful.
  13. NTA

    NTA Well-Known Member

    My Dr friend says to be sure to find a surgeon who has done hundreds (of the lapros)

    Experience really counts in avoiding complications.
  14. legacy38

    legacy38 Well-Known Member

    I had mine removed in 2/09, and it saved my life.

    On a Saturday night, I began experiencing a pain in my right side right where pain in the gallbladder would be. It started dull, but continued to get worse. At first, I thought I had just pulled something. On Sunday, it wasn't hurting too bad; so, I went to a gun show with Volgrad and Woody the Infidel. We ate lunch at a Steak & Shake, and it didn't agree with me. That night, the pain got worse and worse.

    On Monday morning I called my doctor, and he said to go to the ER, which I did. The pain was very localized, which the doctor asked about repeatedly because gall bladder attack pain usually radiates. They ended up doing a scan, and sure enough I had gall stones.

    The ER doc told me it could be treated medically or surgically. I decided on surgery then so that six months down the road I wouldn't be forced into surgery (all this happened as I was leaving the PD for the SO). The ER doc referred me to a surgeon that day. Last thing the ER doc said to me that the localized pain was very unusual.

    I see the surgeon, and have surgery scheduled for that Wednesday (2 days after ER visit). The surgery was to be a laparoscopy.

    Go in for the surgery, and everything appears like it will be a normal procedure. As I am waking up in recovery, the surgeon shows me a picture and tells me some crazy tale that just doesn't make sense.

    I wake up later in my room, and the surgeon is there. He asked if I remembered what he told me in recovery, which I didn't quite remember.

    Turns out that I did have gall stones; so, he went ahead and removed the gall bladder. However, the source of the pain was dead tissue that adhered to the abdominal wall and was brewing up to blow out in a full scale infection which they probably would have found in my autopsy. The picture he showed me was of the abdominal wall before he excised all of the infected tissue.

    If it hadn't been for the gall stones showing up in the scan, they never would have done the surgery.

    As for the recovery, I probably could have been back to work in a week, but my duty belt came into direct contact with my incision, a fact I didn't realize until I put it on for the first time (ouch!!); so, I took two weeks.

    As for post surgery symptoms, I don't have the normal issues with greasy food. If I eat anything that doesn't agree with me, it wakes me up at precisely 0322 hours to tell me about it...

    Sometimes in the evening, I have issues with nausea, but about a quarter dose of pepto seems to fix it right up.
  15. Archangel

    Archangel Moderator Staff Member

    I just had mine out in August, as well as having a 3cm umbilical hernia repaired (didn't even know about that one till after)

    This was my first surgery. Was a very positive experience since I healed fine and have NO more pain.

    I had no gall stones, but my gall bladder was not functional and would become inflamed. Extremely bad pain.

    Best of luck to your wife.
  16. gsusnake

    gsusnake Token Liberal Hippie

    Along with name and DOB. Never really a bad idea.

    Although you don't want to get in the way of the pen markings for the knife.
  17. rmodel65

    rmodel65 Yukon Cornelius

    get ready to change your diet if she has pain from brothers wife had her removed and she has constant pain if she eats the wrong foods fish is a recommended meat but anything else isnt for the most part if you google you can find the diet
  18. EJR914

    EJR914 Cheezburger Operator

    My father had his gall bladder removed, I remember he wasn't sore for very long, but he did say that he felt like he had gotten kicked in the stomach by a horse the next day after surgery, so he was quite sore.
  19. DocMindbender

    DocMindbender New Member

    I know this mostly echoes what others have written, but I had mine out earlier this year -- in April. Long story short, everything went well and it was sort of an easy recovery. They took it out on a Friday afternoon, I stayed overnight and left Saturday afternoon. Took Percocet on Saturday and was off beginning Sunday. Had some pain and swelling/bloating for a few days, but nothing terrible. Slowly got back on totally normal food (probably Monday). Went back to work Wednesday, five days after the surgery -- I don't do physical work; just sit at a desk/in a chair and assess/counsel folks. I couldn't really bend too much to get to my files, but it worked.

    The suggestion of hugging a pillow when coughing or sneezing is a good one. Also, if she uses the toilet it might be a good idea to hug on a pillow then, too.

    The only problem I now have is that *immediately* after I eat breakfast and lunch, I have to use the restroom. No pain or anything, but you have to go and you have to go *now*. Dinner hasn't been a problem for me. My doc warned me that there was a small chance of this, but so far it's mostly an inconvenience. I'm going to talk to him about a medication he mentioned called Questran, I think. It's supposed to help with this.

    Other than that, it's been no troubles and no worries.
  20. Gunstar1

    Gunstar1 Administrator

    Oh, forgot one important point. Stock up on some good quality, soft toilet paper.