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gallbladder?
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gallbladder?

I gave birth to my third child 4 months ago. After birth I noticed a slight tenderness in my right upper flank. About 2 months postpartum, tenderness and discomfort increased. I lost appetite, didn't feel like eating fatty foods. Ultrasound was performed to rule out gallstones. Results showed gallbladder to be normal, i.e. no cholelithiasis or cholecystitis, no biliary dilatation. It revealed increased echogenicity of portal triads, but liver enzymes were normal. A few days later had what felt like a bad gallbladder colic: stabbing pain in right upper flank also radiating around to just below the rib cage in the back. Pain lasted about half an hour to 45min. After that felt like somebody had beaten me up. Whole back, left and right side, very sore and tender. Right flank remained tender for a few days. After that "colic" started to develop dizziness on and of which is still present. Over last 2 months noticed lots of indigestion, i.e.  gas, burping, a bit of reflux. A few days ago, dizziness was very bad and now I have started to have discomfort again in right flank. Dizziness not quite as bad today.
A physician at an urgent care clinic suggested that I  might be experiencing gallbladder spasms. He said that they are apparently fairly common in pregnant and postpartum women. He also said that they would resolve on their own after a few months. Was suppose to have test done for gallbladder spasms, but couldn't have it done due to the fact that I wouldn't be allowed to nurse for 24 hours following the test.
I am wondering if my symptoms could be related to the gallbladder and if the dizziness could be part of it. Would appreciate any suggestions.
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It may be possible that the dizziness is caused from the gallbladder.

To evaluate the gallbladder function, you can consider a HIDA scan with CCK stimulation.  A low gallbladder ejection fraction can cause some of these symptoms.

You can also consider a stone within the biliary tree.  An MRCP (i.e. MRI of the biliary tree) can be considered to evaluate this possibility.

These options can be discussed with your personal physician or gastroenterologist.

Followup with your personal physician is essential.

This answer is not intended as and does not substitute for medical advice - the information presented is for patient education only. Please see your personal physician for further evaluation of your individual case.

Kevin, M.D.
kevinmd_b
5 Comments
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Avatar_n_tn
It seems the gallbladder is the a tricky organ.  I had several kinds of tests, including ultrasound.  The fifth test, the HIDA scan (gallbladder ejection fraction) test determined that my gallbladder was not functioning and a material called sludge (pre-stone substance) was also found in the gallbladder.  The test is done by injecting a substance called a radioactive tracer through an IV followed by a hormone medicine called CCK to make your gallbladder contract and empty.  A camera follows the tracer into the gallbladder and measures the -gallbladder ejection fraction-.  I wish you the best.
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Avatar_n_tn
I agree with Rickey.  That's how the found that my gallbladder wasn't functioning.  Good luck.
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Avatar_n_tn
I also agree. The HIDA scan proved that my gall bladder was bad. I had the sludge like Rickey stated.

God Bless,
CJ
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Avatar_n_tn
what where your symtoms (symptoms) did any one not have pain more of a dull ache
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When my daughter was 10 months I started to have severe pain in the upper right quadrant spreading around to my back. Also break out in a drenching sweat.  Went to the ER at 4AM and they said it was probably my Gall bladder.  A week later it happened again. My white cell count was elevated, and an endoscopy showed I too had "sludge" in my gall bladder. The surgeon said I had to have the gall bladder out right away.

I scheduled the surgery, and everything went fine.  However, the pain returned, just as bad as before.  I had a number of episodes over 6 months until I went to a new Dr. He ordered a CT scan which came back normal.  

I think I have figured out that the pain is related to stress. I moved house, and have a shorter commute, and a more relaxed lifestyle. I had no attack for 11 months until this week when we received some bad news about my husbands health - then I had 2 attacks in 1 week (I am pregnant again).  I noticed that if I try to breath through it instead of paniking and think positive thoughts, and drink ice cold water, the pain eventually eases (after about 30-45 minutes).

So - I don't think I should have had my gallbladder out at all. It had no impact on my symptoms, eventhough they said I had sludge.
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A related discussion, What is this pain? was started.
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