gallbladder removal: when feeling well/able to work out again?

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yirara
yirara Posts: 9,538 Member
Basically I'll need to have my gallbladder removed. No idea why, but it's filled with stones to the rim and I had two colics in the past 3 weeks, and generally don't feel well. Besides female and very pale none of the other risk factors fits. Oh well.. bad luck.

So how long did it take you to feel well again and work out again? I can't even imagine to not run, cycle or (new) skate or do bodyweight exercises. Ugh!
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Replies

  • OooohToast
    OooohToast Posts: 257 Member
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    Hello OP - I had mine out in my 20's (loooooong time ago), keyhole surgery. It took a month before being on public transport didnt make the gap where my GB used to be, feel a bit ick.

    It was definitely impact related ick that took longer than expected to go away, I wasnt doing weights at the time but suspect anything where I would have had to engage my core and be weight bearing would also not be great.

    I would say assuming you are eating and drinking ok, brisk walking first and then swimming would probably be the best exercises after at least two weeks of recovery rest.

    That being said, I felt so much better after having the damn thing out, I think I may well have got back into the swing of life a bit early. Definitely jumping up and down at that Prodigy gig did me no favours...... so you may be able to start earlier if you dont do anythng daft like I did :)

    Really though, it felt like my life was starting again once that thing was out - I never realised until after much it had affected my wellbeing.

    Good luck !
  • yirara
    yirara Posts: 9,538 Member
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    Thanks a lot @OooohToast (you won the internets with this name!)

    I'm a bit of an odd one: If there's a longer distance to walk, maybe just an isle in a building along 10 offices or so I can't walk but I run. I'm a restless one :D I'm also super clumsy and there's no day where I don't add to my impressive bruise collection, and not a week without a somewhat bigger incident. Maybe I should ask for extra strong sutures :s

    Mind you, before the first colic I never thought my gallbladder was not ok. Sure, I've had problems eating too much fat for at least 20 years, but that has become so normal that I don't think much of it unless someone told me I should try keto :D

    But anyway... I want to work out properly again and not worry about this old, stone-filled sausage. Just came out of a hefty knee injury and really want to start doing bodyweight exercises again. But the appointment with the anaesthesiologist is in just under two weeks *sigh*
  • kshama2001
    kshama2001 Posts: 27,996 Member
    edited June 2019
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    My OH said it was no big deal for him. It was 7 years ago, so he is a little hazy on the details, but said he was back to eating junk food in a few days and didn't miss any work. (He probably had the procedure on a Friday.)
  • earlnabby
    earlnabby Posts: 8,171 Member
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    Follow the surgeon's post op instructions which usually include lifting restrictions, no bending over, no baths or pool for a few weeks, etc.

    One thing to be aware of: having a gallbladder removed will affect how your body digests fats. For many, it is a temporary thing but for others it will mean eating moderate to low fat the rest of your life. Start off with a low fat diet and gradually build back up. In the meantime, know where the nearest bathroom is at all times.

    I had my gallbladder out 3 years ago at the same time I had a hiatal hernia repaired so my recovery was different. I still have to be careful with the amount of fat I eat.
  • yirara
    yirara Posts: 9,538 Member
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    Mlkunes wrote: »
    Hello,

    First of all, ask your surgeon about activity restrictions. With laparoscopic surgery, the recovery is much quicker, and restrictions less restrictive, Activity restrictions vary from "no lifting heavier than ten pounds and no core for six weeks" to "whatever you feel able to do, whenever you fell able to do it". Most surgeons will tell you can shower within 24-48 hours, but avoid swimming, bathing, hot tub for about a week. You will be encouraged to walk, walk, walk after surgery, and running is usually not restricted.

    All that being said, it will likely be one to two weeks before you feel like being highly active, and likely four to six weeks to really put it behind you.

    Ask your surgeon what his or her expectations are, and plan accordingly. And remember, no pain, no gain :-)

    BTW, I have not had my gallbladder out, but have removed a couple thousand. Consider this the view from the other side of the hospital gown.

    Stay strong!

    Haha, cool first post here. Welcome!
    Phew, running not restricted sounds at least like something. Cycling I could imagine might be a problem. It's the primary mode of transport here though, and my city bike is not a granny bike but a fairly sporty one *sigh*

    Thanks a lot for your insight as well <3
  • yirara
    yirara Posts: 9,538 Member
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    earlnabby wrote: »
    Follow the surgeon's post op instructions which usually include lifting restrictions, no bending over, no baths or pool for a few weeks, etc.

    One thing to be aware of: having a gallbladder removed will affect how your body digests fats. For many, it is a temporary thing but for others it will mean eating moderate to low fat the rest of your life. Start off with a low fat diet and gradually build back up. In the meantime, know where the nearest bathroom is at all times.

    I had my gallbladder out 3 years ago at the same time I had a hiatal hernia repaired so my recovery was different. I still have to be careful with the amount of fat I eat.

    Yes, I will have to discuss this with the surgeon. But I'll only see him again short before the surgery, once I have the appointment for the removal. This might still take a few weeks.
    I'm not worried about fat digestion as I've not been able to digest fats for the past 20 years or so. Started with restaurant food, this lovely Italian pasta starter with spaghetti, chilli, garlic and lots of oil <3 for example... oh well.. I doubt it could get worse.
  • OooohToast
    OooohToast Posts: 257 Member
    edited June 2019
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    yirara wrote: »
    earlnabby wrote: »
    Follow the surgeon's post op instructions which usually include lifting restrictions, no bending over, no baths or pool for a few weeks, etc.

    One thing to be aware of: having a gallbladder removed will affect how your body digests fats. For many, it is a temporary thing but for others it will mean eating moderate to low fat the rest of your life. Start off with a low fat diet and gradually build back up. In the meantime, know where the nearest bathroom is at all times.

    I had my gallbladder out 3 years ago at the same time I had a hiatal hernia repaired so my recovery was different. I still have to be careful with the amount of fat I eat.

    Yes, I will have to discuss this with the surgeon. But I'll only see him again short before the surgery, once I have the appointment for the removal. This might still take a few weeks.
    I'm not worried about fat digestion as I've not been able to digest fats for the past 20 years or so. Started with restaurant food, this lovely Italian pasta starter with spaghetti, chilli, garlic and lots of oil <3 for example... oh well.. I doubt it could get worse.

    I couldnt eat fat for at least a year before the Op (lost loads of weight but felt awful).

    In the UK, they like to ensure you are eating before you go home.

    My choice ? Cheese omelette ! Probably one of the worst cheese omelettes on the planet (sorry NHS !) but it was still wonderful !

    The only time I've had problems with digestion is after some Christmas Day type epic food / drink / dont move much bender - other than that, its all good. That being said, I've made a conscious effort to look after my liver since which I think has helped. I can certainly recommend milk thistle.

    Let us know how it goes OP ! x
  • yirara
    yirara Posts: 9,538 Member
    Options
    OooohToast wrote: »
    yirara wrote: »
    earlnabby wrote: »
    Follow the surgeon's post op instructions which usually include lifting restrictions, no bending over, no baths or pool for a few weeks, etc.

    One thing to be aware of: having a gallbladder removed will affect how your body digests fats. For many, it is a temporary thing but for others it will mean eating moderate to low fat the rest of your life. Start off with a low fat diet and gradually build back up. In the meantime, know where the nearest bathroom is at all times.

    I had my gallbladder out 3 years ago at the same time I had a hiatal hernia repaired so my recovery was different. I still have to be careful with the amount of fat I eat.

    Yes, I will have to discuss this with the surgeon. But I'll only see him again short before the surgery, once I have the appointment for the removal. This might still take a few weeks.
    I'm not worried about fat digestion as I've not been able to digest fats for the past 20 years or so. Started with restaurant food, this lovely Italian pasta starter with spaghetti, chilli, garlic and lots of oil <3 for example... oh well.. I doubt it could get worse.

    I couldnt eat fat for at least a year before the Op (lost loads of weight but felt awful).

    In the UK, they like to ensure you are eating before you go home.

    My choice ? Cheese omelette ! Probably one of the worst cheese omelettes on the planet (sorry NHS !) but it was still wonderful !

    The only time I've had problems with digestion is after some Christmas Day type epic food / drink / dont move much bender - other than that, its all good. That being said, I've made a conscious effort to look after my liver since which I think has helped. I can certainly recommend milk thistle.

    Let us know how it goes OP ! x

    Will do, absolutely!

    Btw, I agree with your comment on NHS food! I once spent a night in a hospital for observation, for something completely unrelated. Was admitted after lunch, after skipping my lunch because I was sick. No food available in that hospital but a nurse gave me a cookie to survive until dinner at 19:30. The menu was full of fatty food that I could not eat. I ordered a well filled soup, large serving of broccoli and large serving of white rice. The soup was changed out and I got a small bouillon. The broccoli and rice were tiny servings. I'm not saying what breakfast was, but I did cry nearly *eyesroll*

    So lets hope the Dutch are doing it better, really.
  • OooohToast
    OooohToast Posts: 257 Member
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    yirara wrote: »
    OooohToast wrote: »
    yirara wrote: »
    earlnabby wrote: »
    Follow the surgeon's post op instructions which usually include lifting restrictions, no bending over, no baths or pool for a few weeks, etc.

    One thing to be aware of: having a gallbladder removed will affect how your body digests fats. For many, it is a temporary thing but for others it will mean eating moderate to low fat the rest of your life. Start off with a low fat diet and gradually build back up. In the meantime, know where the nearest bathroom is at all times.

    I had my gallbladder out 3 years ago at the same time I had a hiatal hernia repaired so my recovery was different. I still have to be careful with the amount of fat I eat.

    Yes, I will have to discuss this with the surgeon. But I'll only see him again short before the surgery, once I have the appointment for the removal. This might still take a few weeks.
    I'm not worried about fat digestion as I've not been able to digest fats for the past 20 years or so. Started with restaurant food, this lovely Italian pasta starter with spaghetti, chilli, garlic and lots of oil <3 for example... oh well.. I doubt it could get worse.

    I couldnt eat fat for at least a year before the Op (lost loads of weight but felt awful).

    In the UK, they like to ensure you are eating before you go home.

    My choice ? Cheese omelette ! Probably one of the worst cheese omelettes on the planet (sorry NHS !) but it was still wonderful !

    The only time I've had problems with digestion is after some Christmas Day type epic food / drink / dont move much bender - other than that, its all good. That being said, I've made a conscious effort to look after my liver since which I think has helped. I can certainly recommend milk thistle.

    Let us know how it goes OP ! x

    Will do, absolutely!

    Btw, I agree with your comment on NHS food! I once spent a night in a hospital for observation, for something completely unrelated. Was admitted after lunch, after skipping my lunch because I was sick. No food available in that hospital but a nurse gave me a cookie to survive until dinner at 19:30. The menu was full of fatty food that I could not eat. I ordered a well filled soup, large serving of broccoli and large serving of white rice. The soup was changed out and I got a small bouillon. The broccoli and rice were tiny servings. I'm not saying what breakfast was, but I did cry nearly *eyesroll*

    So lets hope the Dutch are doing it better, really.

    I suppose we can't complain too much about the NHS when we dont pay beyond our general tax...Being a nosey type I would love to know how it compares with Holland !

    I remember seeing an article about a womans food diary after giving birth in a Japanese hospital - food looked amazing !!! I've had worse Japanese food than that in restaurants !
  • yirara
    yirara Posts: 9,538 Member
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    OooohToast wrote: »
    yirara wrote: »
    OooohToast wrote: »
    yirara wrote: »
    earlnabby wrote: »
    Follow the surgeon's post op instructions which usually include lifting restrictions, no bending over, no baths or pool for a few weeks, etc.

    One thing to be aware of: having a gallbladder removed will affect how your body digests fats. For many, it is a temporary thing but for others it will mean eating moderate to low fat the rest of your life. Start off with a low fat diet and gradually build back up. In the meantime, know where the nearest bathroom is at all times.

    I had my gallbladder out 3 years ago at the same time I had a hiatal hernia repaired so my recovery was different. I still have to be careful with the amount of fat I eat.

    Yes, I will have to discuss this with the surgeon. But I'll only see him again short before the surgery, once I have the appointment for the removal. This might still take a few weeks.
    I'm not worried about fat digestion as I've not been able to digest fats for the past 20 years or so. Started with restaurant food, this lovely Italian pasta starter with spaghetti, chilli, garlic and lots of oil <3 for example... oh well.. I doubt it could get worse.

    I couldnt eat fat for at least a year before the Op (lost loads of weight but felt awful).

    In the UK, they like to ensure you are eating before you go home.

    My choice ? Cheese omelette ! Probably one of the worst cheese omelettes on the planet (sorry NHS !) but it was still wonderful !

    The only time I've had problems with digestion is after some Christmas Day type epic food / drink / dont move much bender - other than that, its all good. That being said, I've made a conscious effort to look after my liver since which I think has helped. I can certainly recommend milk thistle.

    Let us know how it goes OP ! x

    Will do, absolutely!

    Btw, I agree with your comment on NHS food! I once spent a night in a hospital for observation, for something completely unrelated. Was admitted after lunch, after skipping my lunch because I was sick. No food available in that hospital but a nurse gave me a cookie to survive until dinner at 19:30. The menu was full of fatty food that I could not eat. I ordered a well filled soup, large serving of broccoli and large serving of white rice. The soup was changed out and I got a small bouillon. The broccoli and rice were tiny servings. I'm not saying what breakfast was, but I did cry nearly *eyesroll*

    So lets hope the Dutch are doing it better, really.

    I suppose we can't complain too much about the NHS when we dont pay beyond our general tax...Being a nosey type I would love to know how it compares with Holland !

    I remember seeing an article about a womans food diary after giving birth in a Japanese hospital - food looked amazing !!! I've had worse Japanese food than that in restaurants !

    I guess so, about the NHS I mean. I once spent two nights in a private hospital in Qatar. The food was a-m-a-z-i-n-g! and I could always get more when something I ordered wasn't enough. I remember I had a grapefruit for breakfast with foul medames, labne balls, and a slice of Western bread with gouda cheese :D
  • OooohToast
    OooohToast Posts: 257 Member
    Options
    yirara wrote: »
    OooohToast wrote: »
    yirara wrote: »
    OooohToast wrote: »
    yirara wrote: »
    earlnabby wrote: »
    Follow the surgeon's post op instructions which usually include lifting restrictions, no bending over, no baths or pool for a few weeks, etc.

    One thing to be aware of: having a gallbladder removed will affect how your body digests fats. For many, it is a temporary thing but for others it will mean eating moderate to low fat the rest of your life. Start off with a low fat diet and gradually build back up. In the meantime, know where the nearest bathroom is at all times.

    I had my gallbladder out 3 years ago at the same time I had a hiatal hernia repaired so my recovery was different. I still have to be careful with the amount of fat I eat.

    Yes, I will have to discuss this with the surgeon. But I'll only see him again short before the surgery, once I have the appointment for the removal. This might still take a few weeks.
    I'm not worried about fat digestion as I've not been able to digest fats for the past 20 years or so. Started with restaurant food, this lovely Italian pasta starter with spaghetti, chilli, garlic and lots of oil <3 for example... oh well.. I doubt it could get worse.

    I couldnt eat fat for at least a year before the Op (lost loads of weight but felt awful).

    In the UK, they like to ensure you are eating before you go home.

    My choice ? Cheese omelette ! Probably one of the worst cheese omelettes on the planet (sorry NHS !) but it was still wonderful !

    The only time I've had problems with digestion is after some Christmas Day type epic food / drink / dont move much bender - other than that, its all good. That being said, I've made a conscious effort to look after my liver since which I think has helped. I can certainly recommend milk thistle.

    Let us know how it goes OP ! x

    Will do, absolutely!

    Btw, I agree with your comment on NHS food! I once spent a night in a hospital for observation, for something completely unrelated. Was admitted after lunch, after skipping my lunch because I was sick. No food available in that hospital but a nurse gave me a cookie to survive until dinner at 19:30. The menu was full of fatty food that I could not eat. I ordered a well filled soup, large serving of broccoli and large serving of white rice. The soup was changed out and I got a small bouillon. The broccoli and rice were tiny servings. I'm not saying what breakfast was, but I did cry nearly *eyesroll*

    So lets hope the Dutch are doing it better, really.

    I suppose we can't complain too much about the NHS when we dont pay beyond our general tax...Being a nosey type I would love to know how it compares with Holland !

    I remember seeing an article about a womans food diary after giving birth in a Japanese hospital - food looked amazing !!! I've had worse Japanese food than that in restaurants !

    I guess so, about the NHS I mean. I once spent two nights in a private hospital in Qatar. The food was a-m-a-z-i-n-g! and I could always get more when something I ordered wasn't enough. I remember I had a grapefruit for breakfast with foul medames, labne balls, and a slice of Western bread with gouda cheese :D

    Now thats what I am talking about !!

    The last time I ate courtesy of the NHS was over 20 years ago - by all accounts its got way worse :( Staff are always lovely though - makes you wonder how they turn up for works sometimes.....

    I live in Italy now - I would assume i would be able at the very least to get some decent pasta (hope I dont have to find out though !)
  • mkculs
    mkculs Posts: 316 Member
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    I had more discomfort than I expected, mostly from the gas they use to fill you up during the surgery. I stayed inactive for 4-6 days and then was just fine, back to my normal routine. It was barely a blip on the scale, given the big picture.
  • lorrpb
    lorrpb Posts: 11,464 Member
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    I had a laparoscopic procedure. It took 4-6 weeks for full recovery. Follow your doctors instructions. Even if you “feel ok”, you need to protect the internal wounds and muscles for the amount of time stated by doctor. Good luck!
  • yirara
    yirara Posts: 9,538 Member
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    mkculs wrote: »
    I had more discomfort than I expected, mostly from the gas they use to fill you up during the surgery. I stayed inactive for 4-6 days and then was just fine, back to my normal routine. It was barely a blip on the scale, given the big picture.

    Thanks a lot. I'm not worried on weight, but being forced to remain inactive. I'm just a very restless person. Well.. if I'm not allowed to move anyway :D I can spend a whole weekend on the couch with my laptop while I could do nice things but don't feel like. But if I can't do nice things because of reasons I go crazy :s
  • yirara
    yirara Posts: 9,538 Member
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    lorrpb wrote: »
    I had a laparoscopic procedure. It took 4-6 weeks for full recovery. Follow your doctors instructions. Even if you “feel ok”, you need to protect the internal wounds and muscles for the amount of time stated by doctor. Good luck!

    Thanks a lot. Phew, 4-6 weeks is long! Plus, being a consultant I can't stay home for 4-6 weeks but have to return to work at a certain time - which only is possible by bike as I don't make enough to take a taxi twice every day.
  • 150poundsofme
    150poundsofme Posts: 523 Member
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    Hi, I had my gallbladder out maybe 5 years ago. See that any tests you need be done out-patient, before you are admitted to the hospital. And see if they can start the IV with fluids close to your surgery time. I gained 18 lbs. with the IV (no eating) 8 days in hospital. Then the surgeon missed some stones, sludge, or as I like to call them - renegade stones so I had to go back to hospital for 4 days and do another surgery (gained 8 lbs.). Then a month later had to have another surgery to remove some metal piece they put in. Gained 4 lbs. All from the IV. So maybe everyone doesn't gain from the IV fluid. I had laprascopic. For a week after I was still leaking from the incisions. So not sure how comfortable that would be to exercise. And at that time I wasn't exercising so do not know about that part. My surgeon told me re fat - When you had your gallbladder, you shouldn't have been eating all that fat. Now that your gallbladder is out, you can eat as much fat as you want. He did tell me this. Anyway, I did mention this to another doctor. He said that that is correct but it wouldn't be so healthy for your heart. I was able to eat fat and anything after my removal - never a problem.
  • kshama2001
    kshama2001 Posts: 27,996 Member
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    yirara wrote: »
    lorrpb wrote: »
    I had a laparoscopic procedure. It took 4-6 weeks for full recovery. Follow your doctors instructions. Even if you “feel ok”, you need to protect the internal wounds and muscles for the amount of time stated by doctor. Good luck!

    Thanks a lot. Phew, 4-6 weeks is long! Plus, being a consultant I can't stay home for 4-6 weeks but have to return to work at a certain time - which only is possible by bike as I don't make enough to take a taxi twice every day.

    Not sure this will be the least bit helpful in your situation, but maybe this will help someone else reading. My brother is on disability and so is able to get essentially taxi service for extremely cheap. That is how he gets to his volunteer job and medical appointments. You're not a citizen of that country so who knows if they have short term disability for someone like you.

    My brother is in Eastern Massachusetts, south of Boston. He has Mass Health and the service is GATRA.
  • earlnabby
    earlnabby Posts: 8,171 Member
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    mkculs wrote: »
    I had more discomfort than I expected, mostly from the gas they use to fill you up during the surgery. I stayed inactive for 4-6 days and then was just fine, back to my normal routine. It was barely a blip on the scale, given the big picture.

    My entire right shoulder was in pain for a week after the surgery thanks to that gas. Moving helps it dissipate but I was very limited in my movement because of the hernia surgery in addition to the GB removal.
  • lorrpb
    lorrpb Posts: 11,464 Member
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    yirara wrote: »
    lorrpb wrote: »
    I had a laparoscopic procedure. It took 4-6 weeks for full recovery. Follow your doctors instructions. Even if you “feel ok”, you need to protect the internal wounds and muscles for the amount of time stated by doctor. Good luck!

    Thanks a lot. Phew, 4-6 weeks is long! Plus, being a consultant I can't stay home for 4-6 weeks but have to return to work at a certain time - which only is possible by bike as I don't make enough to take a taxi twice every day.

    Please talk to your doctor about his instructions for your recovery and your bike riding in particular. Please note I said "full recovery" which means back to full energy and doing the same workouts I was before.