Posted : 7/14/2007 1:31:02 AM
Thanks for all the info and sharing your account, huskymom.
He hasn't yet been to the doctor but his symptoms all say gall bladder problems.
He, too, is going to have to give up all the things that he loves: milk, cheese, red meat, bacon, cheesecake, etc.
We're trying to make healthy changes now to better deal with it.
Thanks for the Spark People recommendation.
Symptomatic cholelithiasis (stones in the gallbladder causing pain) is something that can't unfortunately just be treated with diet. Once the gallbladder starts up, it only gets worse. Some of the complications are very severe and life threatening like pancreatitis, ascending cholangitis (infection of the biliary tree), gangrenous cholecystitis (bad infection of the gallbladder where the wall dies). In general, once you develop right upper abdominal pain after eating fatty foods, it's time to come visit me and talk about having your gallbladder out. We do it these days lapAroscopically which means we make four tiny incisions (one 1cm and three 0.5cm) and blow the belly up with carbon dioxide (to make room to work), we take the gallbladder out with a camera that can go into the abdomen and long instruments. The surgery takes about an hour and a half and has very, very low complication rates. There is not any long term sequelae following gallbladder removal. Some have soft stools for the first month, but it always resolves. My recomendation would be to stay on a low fat, low refined carbohydrate, and not spicy diet for now and make an appointment to see your primary physician as soon as possible to get an ultrasound that will confirm stones. Once this is done you will get referred to me (my people
) and be evaluated for a cholecystectomy. I know it may seem crazy since he is feeling ok, but it is well documented in the literature that gallbladders need to come out once symptoms develop to prevent complications. Plus you don't want him to miss eating the food he loves for much longer right [8|]
ETA: many people have gallstones and have no symptoms their entire lives. With these patients nothing needs to be done. It's just the ones that start having pain after eating (or worse) that need it out. Recovery is quick, most people are home within one day of the operation and back to work within one week. There are no activity restrictions after this surgery as well.