GallBladder I Hardly Knew Thee

A not so long time ago it began, in a place that was oddly familiar, a strange pain different than ever felt before. It started inoccently enough a slight twinge and discomfort yet fleeting any time it occured. Was it something I ate? was it just not agreeing with me? To be honest I knew that it was a strong possibility because when it happened it was when Fat brain had taken over and I had eaten something I knew better than I should have had. Donut, Reeses cup, used a tad refined sugar. Was this going to be a start of the natorious dumping syndrum episode?

It all became on my mind 6 months ago yet looking back on it, 8 months is a more accurate representation of when these episodes began. a full six months post op of my RNY gastric bypass. They were very infrequent and rather inconsiquential the first two months to start with. Than came the “BIG ONE” the one where it dawned on me that something was not right. I dont recall what exactly I had to eat but no doubt it was in the course of a busy day on the ambulance and fat brain took hold when it saw free food for the crews, likely donuts. With out thinking I ate one. I had bits of one before with no issue, but this one had glaze and sprinkles. I continued upon my way doing ambulance stuff without much thinking. Than the twinge began, quickly esculating into cramping, quickly into stabbing. the bead of sweat across the brow formed and it hit! There was no dumping to my surprise but the pain was constant and I could not keep still. As if a jagged pinball was racking up a high score in my intestine.

Like a trooper I carried on feeling hot, being flushed, diaphoretic and sick to my stomach beyond belief. This is now why my wife will be happy to tell me and anyone else that I am allergic to donuts because of this very day. I ended up hurting for close to an hour, finally vomitting multiple times and leaving work for the remainder of the day. I rived in pain the time I was home unable to lay still trying evey made up Abdominal yoga position I could conceptualize in order to find a remote position of comfort for even a 5 second period. This episode finally releaved and I felt fine.

A few episodes continued infrequently when I began to track and be hyper aware of tracking my intake down to the most miniscule of things. No corrolation appeared! The pain was always upper center when it began, where my pouch existed. There was always a heavy settling sensation when it would begin. I created the idea of “hard gas” a bubble trapped below food I ate that could not pass by to be belched and forced into my GI tract. But even with soft and liquid foods I came down with episodes. At a loss I felt it may just be part of the life I had to endure. With much push from my wife, at my 1 year post-op follow up I brought this up to my surgeon. I felt enough concern to want testing done, sooner rather than later. He too was unsire as the symptoms were not clear indications of any one particular possibilty.

The concern was a small chance that the stomach pouch had no healed perfectly as exected. As I had been above the 100 percentile when it came to weight loss I was at risk for a complication that could happen. During WLS they rely on abd weight to assist in the healing by adding needed weight to keep the staple line to for the pouch or sleeve to fuse appropriatly. In my case of rapd loss there was a chance that I had created pin holes which could be causing leaking into the unused portion of the stomach. Not life threatening but concerning never the less. The episodes began to be a weekly event if not a few times a week. There was also concer from my surgeon that bowel twisting or other things may be occuring, so ultimatly a CT scan was required to see what may be going on. Quickly after that scan my phone rang and my surgeon personally called with and update, I needed an ultrsound to take a better look at my gall bladder.

Now where a gallbladder attach has a few very specific markers which I didn’t exibit there was enough evidence (stones and Sluge) to warrent a removal per my surgeon. It also gave him a “reason” in insurance terms to reenter and check out the rest of the ABD and previous surgical sites for any possible issues.

Well some time has passed where I can safely say that I am on the mend, minus one organ and a a bit of a sew up job on my stomach pouch to make sure the pinholes that were there are buttoned up. As my surgeon informed me I am damned if I do I am damned if I don’t morbid obesity and greesy foods can effect a gallbladder but so can very rapid weight loss. So I seem to have been destined to be gallbladder less no matter what I did! Now we just wait to make sure this was the answer to the trouble I had been having for the past 8 months.