Contemplating NOT having suggested gallbladder surgery!

Posted by AmericanPatriot @USA @tennisgolf, Feb 26, 2019

It is interesting reading the experience of others. I must remind myself we all are of "unknown" reliability. However, here goes: It has been suggested I have gallbladder removal due to surprising symptoms (attack?) that started 5 months ago: tremendous tightness in upper right quadrant, no warnings, "almost" some shortness of breath and vague pressure traveling upward in back/chest/arms (hard to describe), brief cold sweat. Distressing but not SUPER painful. I have only had a few of these "big" episodes; maybe weekly I have a milder version of the above. Ultrasound showed gallstones. I AM ADAMANT about trying not to lose this organ. I just had 3 elective surgeries in 3 years – all successful (2 total knee replacements and 1 dental bridge). I have always been quite healthy and will go to extremes to avoid surgery. Sorry, I am leary of doctors. I am seeking a great gastroenterologist or alternative medicine Dr. as I am determined to not follow doctors' advice. I have read about gallstones that can cause fatal damage if they pass into pancreas, etc. But I am trying to figure out how to manage. Have discovered smaller meals seem to help, choosing proper foods for this condition, eating slower (I think). But, I still cannot predict when an attack will occur. I am fearful of infections because of my 2 knee replacements. I do not get infections actually; am quite healthy, very active physically, intellectually engaged in volunteer projects and teaching. So far I REFUSE TO CONSIDER SURGERY. Please do not stereotype me when I reveal chronological age (78 yr. old female). I consider myself more like 60-65. My attitude is one of shock and annoyance that this problem arose and that surgery has (possibly) been suggested. People say "it is easy"; not a big deal. Shall I wait for more disturbing symptoms? See if I can handle this myself? Get multiple opinions? Thank you for your comments (I realize there is no definite answer.)

@liaquat

I have a solitary gall stone measuring 12 mm.Generally it has remained silent.I had a pain attack in Jan this year after about 3 years of the previous attack.My surgeon advised removal of gall bladder. However my Physician advised not to go for surgery as pain attacks were not frequent and in his view removal of GB would aggravate my acid reflux issue.I am now confused .Any advice from Group members pls in my case.

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Hi @liaquat, you will see that I moved your comment to a discussion that is ongoing about whether or not to undergo a cholecystectomy (removal of your gallbladder). I myself have had the procedure and have had a lot of issues surrounding it, though I had multiple stones and frequent pain.

How many have you had since January?

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@liaquat – I’m another one who had gallbladder removed. Different than yours- the gallbladder was full of small stones. These are more likely to pass into pancreas. 12 mm is quite big and would be less likely to pass into pancreas. Like @amandaburnett i have had many issues after surgery.
Surgeons prefer to operate on a healthy person- not waiting until there is a bigger problem, such as infection.

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I usually research medical (and other) decisions somewhat thoroughly. I did not do that with gallbladder almost 2 yrs. ago. BTW I think it is important that people mention their approx. age in these discussions – does anyone agree? Although, I do not think AGE is the KEY. I AM a robust 75+ Grandmom and consider myself healthy, very active and engaged, and in pretty good shape (until recent back issues). Re gallbladder, I only had a few bouts of pain/discomfort (not at all like the degree of my current back pain). But when young surgeon said, best to get it out because if this 'n that happen, it becomes much more serious and more difficult to deal with.
And I am shocked when they then say "you don't really need it". Dumb! But, I did it; surgery was fine. It took 1.5 years to have "normal" bathroom habits (but it was "good enough" after a few months). It was not terrible, but was A SURPRISING SET OF CIRCUMSTANCES. You know, I think the medical profession really, REALLY needs to have MUCH BETTER FOLLOW UP – NOT WITH SURGEONS BECAUSE I DO NOT THINK THEY ALWAYS LISTEN TOO WELL OR WANT TO BE INVOLVED – BUT THE SUPPORT STAFF IS MORE HELPFUL. GOD BLESS THE NURSES ALWAYS! ALSO THE PA's are pretty good.
And I am no wimp. But am always baffled by "you're on your own attitude". Are the Docs overworked? I suppose they need to have tough attitude and discipline to deal with the difficulty of physical and mental wellbeing of patients. Guess it is a lot of pressure. RE cholecystectomy, I was recovering fine but did not have "required" bm in 4 days. Called Dr. on wkend. N.A. The covering Dr. was a joke. Uncaring. He said you need enema. I did not know how to do this. Offhandedly he said, go to Emergency Room, which I did. I do not think the staff thought I belonged there. Waited a few hours (I was not really uncomfortable); did the deed; felt better; was certainly not a dignified experience; took a taxi home 10:30 on Sat. night. No follow up from any medical staff. Surgeon, apparently was not even aware of the event. I gave someone name of the incompetent covering Dr. but the word may (?) never have reached the surgeon. Breakdown in communication. Not impressed. DRS. AND SURGERY ARE NOT FOR THE WEAK IN SPIRIT.

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@amandaburnett

Hi @liaquat, you will see that I moved your comment to a discussion that is ongoing about whether or not to undergo a cholecystectomy (removal of your gallbladder). I myself have had the procedure and have had a lot of issues surrounding it, though I had multiple stones and frequent pain.

How many have you had since January?

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Hi no attack since January 21

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