Post cholesectomy (gallbladder removal) chronic back pain

Posted by msb18 @msb18, Dec 11, 2018

Hi – I had my gallbladder removed 17 years ago and have chronic, sharp back pain behind the port incision. That incision was in my upper left abdominal quadrant; the pain is felt in my back, directly behind the incision. It is thought that I have an adhesion in my upper left quadrant. Is it possible that nerves are trapped and that it causes referred pain in my back? The pain is nauseating and hasn’t improved. I have been on anti seizure medication and a pain killer that isn’t a percocet-type medication. I am curious if anyone else has persistent pain in their back following gallbladder surgery. If so, how is your pain treated.

@woodsiechris

Update. I had my ERCP Sphincterotomy on Friday. The surgeon cut the muscle of the Sphincter of Oddi and cleaned out my duct. I did however have extreme abdominal pain about 8 hours later and had to go to the ER to ensure it wasn't Pancreatitis. I started feeling better shortly after arriving at the ER. Blood tests were good and was sent home. They suspected I passed a stone after the Sphincter was opened or experienced a spasm. Since then the PCS seems to be improving a lot. In the spirit of not getting too confident I will update in another month. Thanks for your input everyone but so far so good.

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Hello @woodsiechris,

I'm so happy to hear from you and know that you are doing well. I'm glad that you are noticing some improvement already. Yes, please keep in touch as the healing continues!

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I had this. I was so worried something was wrong. I saw my chiropractor 1 week after and yes I had ribs out of place from surgery. He said he sees it a lot bc they have to put u on your side and contort u in crazy ways while u r out…. Needless to say I felt so much better after. Hope this helps

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Update:. After my Sphincterotomy on May 24th i had 2 days of no pain and then the pain came back. My gastro had me go for a 2nd ERCP on the 31st to put in a biliary stent as he felt my duct had narrowed. Long story short, since the stent my stomach lining has chronic inflammation and is spasmatic. Dr. thinks the irritation in my duodenum from the stent is causing a Crohn's reaction and these spasms. I was prescribed Bentyl and that was ineffective but then Dicetel which has been very effective. My pain in RUQ is now positional likely due to the stent. Anyhow, my stent gets removed on July 31st. Current status is that I am starting to feel better but the ERCPs have been very traumatic to my stomach. I dread the stent removal but hopefully it doesn't set me back too much. Btw,. Smaller meals and lower fat is also a way of life for me and that hasn't been a bad thing. I have lost around 20 lbs from this whole ordeal and bowels are also improving. Will update in Sept after 2 mos post stent removal or earlier if i feel better sooner. Part of me questions or I should have ever gotten an ERCP in the first place but another part tells me with Crohn's on top of this, I just need to be patient.

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@woodsiechris

Update:. After my Sphincterotomy on May 24th i had 2 days of no pain and then the pain came back. My gastro had me go for a 2nd ERCP on the 31st to put in a biliary stent as he felt my duct had narrowed. Long story short, since the stent my stomach lining has chronic inflammation and is spasmatic. Dr. thinks the irritation in my duodenum from the stent is causing a Crohn's reaction and these spasms. I was prescribed Bentyl and that was ineffective but then Dicetel which has been very effective. My pain in RUQ is now positional likely due to the stent. Anyhow, my stent gets removed on July 31st. Current status is that I am starting to feel better but the ERCPs have been very traumatic to my stomach. I dread the stent removal but hopefully it doesn't set me back too much. Btw,. Smaller meals and lower fat is also a way of life for me and that hasn't been a bad thing. I have lost around 20 lbs from this whole ordeal and bowels are also improving. Will update in Sept after 2 mos post stent removal or earlier if i feel better sooner. Part of me questions or I should have ever gotten an ERCP in the first place but another part tells me with Crohn's on top of this, I just need to be patient.

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@woodsiechris I so appreciate your update. It sounds like this has turned out to be a real journey for you. I'm glad that you are beginning to feel better with the smaller meals and the Dicetel. I'm sure practicing patience has not been the easiest thing to do.

Having lighter meals (both in quantity and quality) are important for any of us with digestive problems.

I'll look forward to hearing from you after the stent removal at the end of the month. I hope that it is an uneventful procedure and brings you some relief.

Thanks again for keeping in touch. Wishing you well!

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@woodsiechris

Update:. After my Sphincterotomy on May 24th i had 2 days of no pain and then the pain came back. My gastro had me go for a 2nd ERCP on the 31st to put in a biliary stent as he felt my duct had narrowed. Long story short, since the stent my stomach lining has chronic inflammation and is spasmatic. Dr. thinks the irritation in my duodenum from the stent is causing a Crohn's reaction and these spasms. I was prescribed Bentyl and that was ineffective but then Dicetel which has been very effective. My pain in RUQ is now positional likely due to the stent. Anyhow, my stent gets removed on July 31st. Current status is that I am starting to feel better but the ERCPs have been very traumatic to my stomach. I dread the stent removal but hopefully it doesn't set me back too much. Btw,. Smaller meals and lower fat is also a way of life for me and that hasn't been a bad thing. I have lost around 20 lbs from this whole ordeal and bowels are also improving. Will update in Sept after 2 mos post stent removal or earlier if i feel better sooner. Part of me questions or I should have ever gotten an ERCP in the first place but another part tells me with Crohn's on top of this, I just need to be patient.

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@woodsiechris I am so, so sorry for all that's happening. I opted to leave my post cholesectomy syndrome alone and try to control it with more frequent, smaller meals and avoid fatty/greasy foods. We do need a certain amount of fat for the body to use protein but, I try to get it from things like olive oil or a scrambled egg made without butter, spray oil, etc.

I was put on Bentyl early on – and discovered the hard way that it knocked me out (I slept through the alarm and called out of work after 11am). I don't think it was particularly useful. My dad was prescribed it too for 'spastic colon.'

Will the Crohns or Colitis calm down after your body recovers from the trauma? My cousin has ulcerative colitis (genetics sucks in my family) and when my dog began to have symptoms of colitis (dogs can have it too), she suggested Flagyl. Technically it's an antibiotic but, a helpful side effect is it's anti inflammatory in the digestive system. It helps my cousin and works wonders for my dog during his flare ups.

I do hope this stops once you heal. Are you showing other symptoms of that like rashes or arthritic -type aches?

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@woodsiechris

Update:. After my Sphincterotomy on May 24th i had 2 days of no pain and then the pain came back. My gastro had me go for a 2nd ERCP on the 31st to put in a biliary stent as he felt my duct had narrowed. Long story short, since the stent my stomach lining has chronic inflammation and is spasmatic. Dr. thinks the irritation in my duodenum from the stent is causing a Crohn's reaction and these spasms. I was prescribed Bentyl and that was ineffective but then Dicetel which has been very effective. My pain in RUQ is now positional likely due to the stent. Anyhow, my stent gets removed on July 31st. Current status is that I am starting to feel better but the ERCPs have been very traumatic to my stomach. I dread the stent removal but hopefully it doesn't set me back too much. Btw,. Smaller meals and lower fat is also a way of life for me and that hasn't been a bad thing. I have lost around 20 lbs from this whole ordeal and bowels are also improving. Will update in Sept after 2 mos post stent removal or earlier if i feel better sooner. Part of me questions or I should have ever gotten an ERCP in the first place but another part tells me with Crohn's on top of this, I just need to be patient.

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I had an ERCP which caused me to have chronic pancreatitis. Have that test done was the worse thing I could have done. I've heard the stents are a no no. Not good results. See if you can get another opinion or 2. I wish you the best.

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@claytamos

I had an ERCP which caused me to have chronic pancreatitis. Have that test done was the worse thing I could have done. I've heard the stents are a no no. Not good results. See if you can get another opinion or 2. I wish you the best.

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Hi there. Perhaps your case is differentntjan mine. I have had no pancreatitis attacks at all. Neither acute or chronic. Just stomach lining inflammation and spasm when my stomach is too empty. Nevertheless, the stent comes out of me in 2 more weeks. I am sorry to hear you had such complications with your ERCP. My 80 year old mother has had 2 ERCPs to remove bile duct stones and a Sphincterotomy and is doing quite well.
Without pancreatitis. Better than me actually. Trust me, if I could turn back time I would have opted out of the ERCP and waited longer. I will look at a 2nd opinion when the stent is removed if the stomach inflammation and spasm continue.

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@woodsiechris

Hi there. Perhaps your case is differentntjan mine. I have had no pancreatitis attacks at all. Neither acute or chronic. Just stomach lining inflammation and spasm when my stomach is too empty. Nevertheless, the stent comes out of me in 2 more weeks. I am sorry to hear you had such complications with your ERCP. My 80 year old mother has had 2 ERCPs to remove bile duct stones and a Sphincterotomy and is doing quite well.
Without pancreatitis. Better than me actually. Trust me, if I could turn back time I would have opted out of the ERCP and waited longer. I will look at a 2nd opinion when the stent is removed if the stomach inflammation and spasm continue.

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I've never heard of them removing the stent. I was told scar tissue starts to form around it. What is the purpose of removing it? Won't the same problem you had without it return?

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@claytamos

I've never heard of them removing the stent. I was told scar tissue starts to form around it. What is the purpose of removing it? Won't the same problem you had without it return?

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The stent is a plastic temporary stent meant to widen the bile duct and sphincter. It gets removed after 2 months once the widening is completed. I believe you are referring to a permanent metal one for worse duct issues than mine. Yes I have heard horror stories about them.

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@daisydoo

Hi all, I had my gallbladder removed 6 weeks ago. My question is how long does it take to recover? My incisions have all healed nicely. But my main concern is lower abdominal pain. This is either side of my tummy button. It is brought on my walking & movement. My surgeon checked for post op hernia & it's not that. So he said I'm still recovering & to give it time. Has anyone else had this symptom 6 weeks post op? I expected to be fully recovered by now & it does worry me. I do still get the odd upper twinge & pain were the gallbladder was, but again only if I move around alot. I'm eating normally & have no other symptoms. My only worry is my lower abdominal pain.
Thank you in advance

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Start taking enzymes and use real lemons in your water or tea. It will help with digestion and no reflux.

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Hi All. Well it's been exactly 2 months since the stent was placed in my bile duct to widen the duct and diameter of the Sphincter of Oddi for my PCS and SOD. I am happy to say that my stent was removed quicky this week and without the trauma of the previous 2 ERCPs. My RUQ PCS pain is no longer there and my stomach spasms are subsiding. I will be going off Dicetel next week.

When my Gastro removed the stent he was very pleased with the success of the duct widening and also stretched the Sphincter of Oddi once more with ballooning before he finished the procedure. I am now symptom free and very happy. It was a long road but it turns out that patience was key as well as physicians who never gave up on me. I will make a final post after my follow up appt in 1 month. I hope some of this information about my journey helps someone else with Post Cholesectomy Syndrome caused by Sphincter of Oddi Dysfunction post Cholesectomy.

Liked by msb18

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@woodsiechris

Hi All. Well it's been exactly 2 months since the stent was placed in my bile duct to widen the duct and diameter of the Sphincter of Oddi for my PCS and SOD. I am happy to say that my stent was removed quicky this week and without the trauma of the previous 2 ERCPs. My RUQ PCS pain is no longer there and my stomach spasms are subsiding. I will be going off Dicetel next week.

When my Gastro removed the stent he was very pleased with the success of the duct widening and also stretched the Sphincter of Oddi once more with ballooning before he finished the procedure. I am now symptom free and very happy. It was a long road but it turns out that patience was key as well as physicians who never gave up on me. I will make a final post after my follow up appt in 1 month. I hope some of this information about my journey helps someone else with Post Cholesectomy Syndrome caused by Sphincter of Oddi Dysfunction post Cholesectomy.

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@woodsiechris It's wonderful news that you're doing better. I hope that you continue to improve. Feel well.

Liked by woodsiechris

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