Gallstones

Hi! I was just wondering if anyone else here has had gallstones since losing weight? I thought it was the other way round! I was hospitalised 3 weeks ago and they found atleast 15 gallstones! They didn't remove it as the pain calmed down! In the past 3 weeks since being home I have had the pain 4 times. The pains so bad I Litrelly lie on the floor and scream!!
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Replies

  • xcalygrl
    xcalygrl Posts: 1,897 Member
    I haven't experienced that, but I did a quick google search to find the WebMD article on Gallstones. One of the causes is listed as rapid weigh loss. Not sure if that applies to you, but if it does taht could be why you are experiencing them now:
    http://www.webmd.com/digestive-disorders/gallstones
  • xcalygrl wrote: »
    I haven't experienced that, but I did a quick google search to find the WebMD article on Gallstones. One of the causes is listed as rapid weigh loss. Not sure if that applies to you, but if it does taht could be why you are experiencing them now:
    http://www.webmd.com/digestive-disorders/gallstones

    I have lost 126 pounds in 7 months so that might b the case! Thanks that's really helpful x
  • JeriAnne84
    JeriAnne84 Posts: 543 Member
    I didn't know you could get them if you lost a bunch of weight fast. I gained a bunch of weight (and ate like crap and my doctor said since my mom had crappy gallbladder genes I did too). Hopefully they aren't tiny ones. Mine were and I went from March - September before getting my pain checked out, and that was enough time for the tiny ones to slip into the duct to my pancreas and block the enzymes from getting out. I got pancreatitis and was in the hospital for a week before they took my gallbladder out. If you start throwing up after every meal and whenever you drink, get your butt to the hospital. Seriously that stuff was not fun.
  • JeriAnne84 wrote: »
    I didn't know you could get them if you lost a bunch of weight fast. I gained a bunch of weight (and ate like crap and my doctor said since my mom had crappy gallbladder genes I did too). Hopefully they aren't tiny ones. Mine were and I went from March - September before getting my pain checked out, and that was enough time for the tiny ones to slip into the duct to my pancreas and block the enzymes from getting out. I got pancreatitis and was in the hospital for a week before they took my gallbladder out. If you start throwing up after every meal and whenever you drink, get your butt to the hospital. Seriously that stuff was not fun.

    I have been really unwell for the past 3 days! The pain is unbelievable and I can't keep anything down! My local hospital is hopeless! I have been urinating loads aswell don't kno if that's anything to do with it! Xx
  • rebeccatackett
    rebeccatackett Posts: 37 Member
    This is not related to weight loss but my sister had her gall bladder taken out in August. They thought she had one obstructing her bile duct but when they went in, there were no gall stones. Several procedures, tests, biopsies later and she was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. She is 34. Everything pointed to gall stones until she had the surgery to remove her gall bladder and there were no gall stones founds. I would get a second opinion about your gall stones. If you have 15, I see no reason to wait until you have a blockage or another flare up to remove it. It can be a sign of a more serious issue and you would be better off to be safe than sorry.
  • This is not related to weight loss but my sister had her gall bladder taken out in August. They thought she had one obstructing her bile duct but when they went in, there were no gall stones. Several procedures, tests, biopsies later and she was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. She is 34. Everything pointed to gall stones until she had the surgery to remove her gall bladder and there were no gall stones founds. I would get a second opinion about your gall stones. If you have 15, I see no reason to wait until you have a blockage or another flare up to remove it. It can be a sign of a more serious issue and you would be better off to be safe than sorry.

    I'm sorry to hear that x yes i need to go back after Xmas xx
  • Some_Watery_Tart
    Some_Watery_Tart Posts: 2,250 Member
    I had mine removed 13 years ago. I highly recommend not living in that kind of pain, regardless of what caused it. It is so horrible! You're going to hear horror stories about how hard it is to live without your gall bladder, but I'll tell you that my personal experience is that I just had to be careful of eating greasy food for the first year or so. After that, smooth sailing. No weight gain, no crazy problems of any kind.

    Now, I'm going to go eat some cheese fries and wonder why I'm fat. :wink:
  • LianaG1115
    LianaG1115 Posts: 453 Member
    I have had gallstones and have had my gallbladder removed because of them. I can only tell you from my own experiences that rapid weight loss can cause stones. I can also tell you that I totally FEEL your pain with the attacks you're having and I would strongly encourage you to seek medical help, even a surgeon to remove the gallbladder. I can tell you that I am a procrastinator, dreaded surgery, put it off until I couldn't bear the pain any longer and was pretty much told by my GI doctor that I was VERY lucky as I developed an infection in my liver due to a stone causing "backup" from blockage (thats the pain you're experiencing is a stone is blocking the duct). She also put me on an antibiotic before my surgery to help with the infection and had I not had gone in when I did, I could've had the "old school" surgery where you're cut open with a HUGE scar left and 6 weeks out on medical leave as opposed to the minor surgery from laser and back to work after a weekend. So just putting it out there, if they tell you surgery, do it...you'll feel like a million bucks after!!!
  • havalynd
    havalynd Posts: 54 Member
    They are more common in older individuals (over 40) but there can be some genetic disposition too I believe. (They run in my family for instance.) I have only one but it's asymptomatic, and unless it starts giving me attacks I'm just going to let it chill in there. Among other things, women are more likely to develop them than men too.

    If yours are giving you pain I do suggest a removal unless you can bear it. The pain is when the gallstone sticks in the neck of the gallbladder, making it freak out a little. Some stones can pass, but others risk getting stuck in the bile duct and can give you all sorts of trouble. (Like jaundice, vomiting, fever, and more - worse yet, it can get infected and spread that infection to your liver and other organs making it a life threatening situation.) My doctor said "you'll feel it if it passes" so it probably won't be easy. If yours are already giving you trouble, it may be worth looking into surgery.

    Which is scary, I know, but my mother had hers out when I was little - and she was still able to eat many of the foods from before but it was dairy she processed a little harder. No all you can eat sundaes, for instance, but milk in her tea every day didn't give her a lick of trouble.
  • BZAH10
    BZAH10 Posts: 5,710 Member
    JeriAnne84 wrote: »
    I didn't know you could get them if you lost a bunch of weight fast. I gained a bunch of weight (and ate like crap and my doctor said since my mom had crappy gallbladder genes I did too). Hopefully they aren't tiny ones. Mine were and I went from March - September before getting my pain checked out, and that was enough time for the tiny ones to slip into the duct to my pancreas and block the enzymes from getting out. I got pancreatitis and was in the hospital for a week before they took my gallbladder out. If you start throwing up after every meal and whenever you drink, get your butt to the hospital. Seriously that stuff was not fun.

    I have been really unwell for the past 3 days! The pain is unbelievable and I can't keep anything down! My local hospital is hopeless! I have been urinating loads aswell don't kno if that's anything to do with it! Xx

    OP, find a different doctor or a different hospital. Not to be an alarmist, but I agree with this post: getting a second opinion and some relief is important.
  • LianaG1115
    LianaG1115 Posts: 453 Member
    find a general surgeon, don't need a hospital to get scheduled for surgery
  • goddessofawesome
    goddessofawesome Posts: 563 Member
    edited December 2014
    LianaG1115 wrote: »
    find a general surgeon, don't need a hospital to get scheduled for surgery

    And if it turn out it's not her gall bladder?

    OP: I'd get a second (and possibly third) opinion on your issue. TBH, gall bladder surgery is major surgery and it's not something to enter in to lightly.

    My sister was having issues several years ago and the doctors were adamant that it was her gall bladder -- even though tests showed nothing wrong with it. Thankfully she got a second opinion and found out she had celiacs! She took the info to the original doctor who was still adamant that she get her gall bladder removed "regardless" (she didn't). Get a second, third, fourth, hell even fifth opinion. Make them run tests and make sure they are absolutely thorough AND they show you the results and explain them to you (and if need be take THOSE results to another doctor to have them analyzed). Don't just get your gall bladder removed because that is what you're told you should do and because other people have had it removed.

  • wamydia
    wamydia Posts: 259 Member
    edited December 2014
    Yes, I experienced this. I lost about 100lbs in a little over a year and ended up developing gall stones. My doctor told me that this is fairly common after a large weight loss due to the way the gall bladder functions to help break down fat. When I cut down my calories, I did an unintentionally low fat diet and the gall bladder wasn't needed to release the same amount of bile that it was used to. So it just kind of sits in there and calcifies into stones.

    I had a couple of pretty bad gall bladder attacks and then my doctors sent me to a surgeon and they took my gall bladder out. My understanding is that, once you have the stones, it just gets worse until you take the gall bladder out. I saw a few alternative therapies to break up the stones when I researched it, but it seems like the consensus is that they will just come back eventually. I highly recommend getting referred to a surgeon in your case. Your GP should be able to help you or you can just look one up on your health insurance website. It sounds like the pain level more than justifies it.

    For the record, I had zero complications from my surgery and still eat pretty much anything I want (once in a great while, very greasy things don't agree with me). The first week or so after surgery can be uncomfortable due to the air that they pump into the abdominal cavity for the procedure, but I only took painkillers for the first few days. I was back on my feet the day after surgery and walking my dogs a mile a day again in less than a week. I did take two weeks off of work and I'm glad I did just because I think a person needs to get some rest after any major surgery. But yeah, it's definitely worth the little bit of discomfort and recovery time in order to not go on in that kind of pain.
  • FrozenTundra511
    FrozenTundra511 Posts: 206 Member
    Definitely get a 2nd and/or a 3rd opinion. My 15 year old had to have hers removed last month.
  • emdeesea
    emdeesea Posts: 1,823 Member
    I lost a lot of weight around 2005 and had to have my gall bladder out emergency surgery.

    It was done laparoscopic and I was in the hospital overnight (on a Thursday) and back to work the next Monday. Really not a huge surgery and very little down time.

    As gallstones can cause way more problems with your gallbladder than simply pain, it's really best that you just have that gallbladder out. I've had mine out for almost 10 years and I've never, ever had any issues, even with eating the occasional fatty, greasy food.

    Gall bladder surgery isn't like it used to be. It's a fairly non-invasive procedure these days.
  • go2grrl
    go2grrl Posts: 190 Member
    I went on my first and last low cal diet when I was about 29, losing about 60 pounds in four months. 5 months later I started having all the debilitating pain in my stomach and back. I put up with that for another year and then finally found I had gallstones and had them and the gallbladder removed. The surgery was pretty simple with a two day stay and no complications.
  • Mediocrates55
    Mediocrates55 Posts: 326 Member
    I had stones and had mine removed in 2012. Best thing I ever did. They did it lapro, so I only had a few very small incisions. I was up and moving like normal two days post. The only thing they didn't tell me about was the bile dumping, which doesn't always happen. Would have been nice to know about it though! LOL Now though, I don't have any noticeable issue with certain foods (like grease) and I hadn't had any issues shifting the weight. It was a great decision for me. Get another doctor and another opinion. You shouldn't suffer with it if that is what is going on.
  • LianaG1115
    LianaG1115 Posts: 453 Member
    LianaG1115 wrote: »
    find a general surgeon, don't need a hospital to get scheduled for surgery

    And if it turn out it's not her gall bladder?

    OP: I'd get a second (and possibly third) opinion on your issue. TBH, gall bladder surgery is major surgery and it's not something to enter in to lightly.

    My sister was having issues several years ago and the doctors were adamant that it was her gall bladder -- even though tests showed nothing wrong with it. Thankfully she got a second opinion and found out she had celiacs! She took the info to the original doctor who was still adamant that she get her gall bladder removed "regardless" (she didn't). Get a second, third, fourth, hell even fifth opinion. Make them run tests and make sure they are absolutely thorough AND they show you the results and explain them to you (and if need be take THOSE results to another doctor to have them analyzed). Don't just get your gall bladder removed because that is what you're told you should do and because other people have had it removed.
    I think she had said they found she has 15 gallstones??
  • Thanks everyone for your comments. Yes when I was in hospital I had a scan, he counted 15 stones then have up! I had been nill by mouth overnight ready for them to remove my gallbladder but because the pain had gone by the morning they left it and said fingers crossed it won't cause you more pain but in the past 3 weeks it's come back four times! Xx
  • journalistjen
    journalistjen Posts: 265 Member
    You will need surgery eventually. I had a lot of small stones. I tried controlling the "outbreak of pain" with diet, but it didn't matter. My gallbladder became infected, and I had to have emergency surgery.