Gallstones – Now I need my Gallbladder removed.

What Has Caused my Gallstones?

This week after 3 years of symptoms, tests, operations booked, operations cancelled, A&E visits and a lot more pain, my doctor has told me my gallstones mean I need to have my gallbladder removed. I tried to argue it, I asked did my C-section cause it, did my pregnancies cause it?

Um no gallstones are common is women, who are getting older who are over-weight (FFF female, forty, fat). Oh my word. I am not even 40, but yep definitely female and yep I have been overweight my entire life. A sudden sense of impending age and me not looking after my health hits me hard.

The Pain & Diagnosis

Around 3 years ago I ended up in A&E. I had the worst stomach cramps, equivalent to 8cm dilated labour pains but constant. At least contractions come and go. And just to let you know I have a VERY low pain threshold.

Eventually the pain stopped after about 6 hours and off I toddled to maybe 5 different consultations, scans, tests to investigate the problem. I was working at EE then, and I had private health care so everything was done very quickly. Eventually the doctors worked out I had small gallstones and this was the cause of the pain.

25-6-16 gallstonesbiology

I was booked in for the gall bladder removal April 2014. The date they gave me clashed with a big holiday and I had just got a new job at work. The operation was 6 weeks off work and holiday cancellation, so I postponed it.

And you know what the pain stopped. Through the whole of 2014 and 2015 I was fine. In 2015 I left EE, lost 2 ½ stone of weight and then the pain started again with a vengeance.

An Attack

A memorable attack was on holiday in Las Vegas this year in April. I had a raging hangover on day 2 of the holiday and all I needed was caffeine and food. I had a breakfast burrito with eggs and strong coffee with cream. This made me feel very full but better.

We headed out that morning to a very exciting helicopter trip over the Grand Canyon. We flew to the skyline walkway and gave myself a panic attack walking over a glass bottomed bridge 1000 ft. over the Grand Canyon.

25-6-16 gallstoneattack

We arrive back at the heliport at lunchtime and the pain started. Crippling cramps. I downed a litre of water, no effect. I walked around, I rubbed and rubbed the pain. No effect. I took paracetamol, Nexium, no effect. I went to the juice bar in our hotel and showed them my stomach, now distended to 6-month pregnant look. They advised ginger and beetroot. No effect. All I could do was moan, cry and lie in bed in Las Vegas of all places. A little pain filled sleep helped.

Dinner that night was one the nicest steak restaurants in the world. I felt slightly better 7 hours later, the long walk from Aria to Palazzo helped. But I couldn’t drink and I couldn’t eat much. My $70 steak ended up being eaten by hubby.

Pain Management

So when back in the UK I went back to the doctors and told him I couldn’t cope. I had had 3 attacks in the space of 1 month. Blood tests were done to check it wasn’t something more sinister, all was fine…taking us up to the appointment on Thursday. Gall bladder to be removed.

Since then everything I eat is causing pain from porridge made with semi-skimmed milk to a gluten free fruit & nut bars to red wine to fruit smoothies. This is not good so this morning I have a meeting with my yoga guru and nutritionist friend Helena to help me out.

I will be waiting at least 3-months for this operation (no more private health-care now I am self-employed) so I have to know what to eat without causing me pain. I’ll let you know how I get on.

Go to my next post with an update on how my new eating plan affected my Gall Stone pain


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Lynn Beattie

Aka Mrs MummyPenny

Personal Finance Expert

I write about personal finance made simple, lifestyle choices that will save you time and money, as well as products and services that offer great value.

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2 Responses

  1. Your gallbladder attacks happen when you get dehydrated. Drink water with some electrolytes if you want to stop the pain. This sounds very simplistic but it’s true.

    1. Thats a great tip. Could have done with that when I was screaming in agony at A&E. No more pain since the gall bladder has been removed.

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