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pancreatic cancer, gallstones?
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pancreatic cancer, gallstones?

I am inquiring about my father. He's 63 years old, caucasian, about 5'9' - I am not sure of his weight; he may be just slightly overweight, but not very much. Nonsmoker; though he smoked in the past, he quit more than 15 years ago. He has Type II diabetes, which is managed through oral medication. He had a heart attack 8 years ago and recovered well with a stent.  He had some restenosis 2 years ago and the area was restented and so far is fine.  For about 2 months now, he has been complaining of stomach pains, mainly after larger meals. The pain occurs mostly at night and feels like a cramping and/or burning feeling. The pain tends to wake him up and last anywhere from half and hour to a couple of hours - he rarely has pain during the day.  He had a colonoscopy and endoscopy a few weeks ago, both were negative. His doctor has prescribed Nexium, but it does not seem to have helped. I think he has had some constipation and/or diarrhea, but I'm not sure (he doesn't really talk about that with me, but he has mentioned vague "bathroom" issues). Most recently, he has been complaining of pain in his back, mainly at night along with the stomach pain, in between his shoulder blades; though he said he has had some pain in other areas of his back, he said it's mostly in his shoulder blades. When he saw his doctor last, a few weeks ago, he said to keep trying the Nexium for a few weeks and if the pain persists, they would schedule an MRI. I have done some research on this and the symptoms of pancreatic cancer and gallstone seem very similar. I have tried to reassure him, telling him I think it's his gallbladder, but I myself am very worried it's more serious, such as pancreatic cancer. Are there any symptoms that can differentiate between the two, until we get his tests?
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Gallstones certainly are suspected based on the story.  The MRI is overkill at this point - an ultrasound would be the first reasonable step.  If there is evidence of biliary dilation (which then can point to possible pancreatic diseases), then you can further evaluation with an MRCP or ERCP.  

Pancreatic cancer is manifested by a pain that can be intermittent, radiating to the back, weight loss and possible jaundice.

You can discuss the option of an ultrasound with your personal physician.

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.
http://www.straightfromthedoc.com
17 Comments
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you can get an abdominal ultrasound to check for gallstones; pancreatic cancer I'm not sure about.  If they find gallstones I know there's a home remedy involving olive oil and lemon juice to move gallstones out of the body (you'd need to ask the doc if he/she thinks it's safe to do that, although it seems to me it would be safer than getting an organ removed)
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I have done the liver flush and had wonderful results. I passed hundreds of stones. I did Dr. Hulda Clarks flush. If you believe in chiropractic, I would encorage you to give that a try. Acid reflux can cause terrible pain in your back between the shoulder blades. If he does have "bathroom issues" then a colon cleanse will probably help. If his colon is backed up, that could be the cause of his burning stomach. Digestive food enzymes and a good probiotic won't hurt either.
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two points: first, the symptoms are highly suggestive of gallstones. Pancreatic cancer is much more likely to cause steady pain, and usually there's weight loss. Ultrasound would, for most docs, be the first test, not MRI

Second: the "flush" advice, and the lemon/olive oil thing are totally bogus and useless. Take enough olive oil and lemon, and you'll pass curds of oil that quacks will tell you are stones. It's entirely fake. Want proof? If an ultrasound shows gallstones, try those methods, pass all the weird things you want, and ask for another ultrasound (it's an expensive proof, I'll admit: but I know from experience with thousands of gallstone patients what works, what doesn't, what fools the foolable.
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First of all, I resent being called a fool. People who have closed minds are in my mind the fools. Just because you do one flush doesn't mean that stones are not still present. Stones actually form in the liver. After a flush, more stones work their way down and therefore would be seen on an ultrasound. Once you have stones, you will probably continue to get them even and especially after your gallbladder is removed. One of these days the quacks will be those in the medical profession who think their word is the only word. After years of listening to people like you I was in the worst health of my life and bedridden with 4 kids to take care of and unable to do so. It has been thru the wise counsel of countless people in the natural health profession that I was able to resume my life normally. I no longer rely on a pill to make me better, I rely on myself and what my body tells me. Before you start calling people fools and putting them down as simpletons, look in the mirror.
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Good luck to you. Virtually everything you said in the above post is medically incorrect. Stones RARELY form in the liver; and practically never form again once the gallbladder is removed. Also, I called no one a "fool." I mentioned fooling the foolable. People get fooled all the time: that doesn't make them fools. Some, however, are foolish. Others are gullible. Still others are in need of answers and when they can't get what they want, they turn elsewhere. But I'm well aware that mainstream medicine doesn't have all the answers for all people. Many of the alternative choices are at least benign. I'm not aware of people being harmed by an occasional "liver flush." (there's no such thing as a liver flush, physiologically; but unless it's done over and over, it's harmless enough.) Some choices, unfortunately, are deadly, in that they steer people away from what they need. But I'm not being facetious when I wish you luck.
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I think it is obvious that the medical profession doesn't have all the answers, hence this forum. I am not a doctor, but I do know what it feels like to have gallstones. Not having a gallbladder and being rushed to the hospital with a stone lodged in a duct in my liver somewhere has made me a believer of liver stones, medically impossible or not.The symptoms are classic gallstone symptoms: pain in right shoulder and under right ribcage. Sometimes nausea and vomiting, sometimes not. I went thru this several times before I resorted to doing a liver flush. I use grapefruit juice, not lemon. My pain was immediately relieved and has only now returned, over one and a half years.Instead of a flush this time I am trying other alternatives. You are correct in saying there are some therapies that have deadly consequences. I work only with people that I truly trust and believe in. If something doesn't feel right to me, I don't do it. I use this same approach in dealing with my medical doctors as well. What I resent are people who put others down because it's medically impossible(no such thing, in my opinion). I now know that pain and suffering are not normal and sometimes we have to go out and find our own solutions. Thank you for your good wishes. I can always use them.
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stones in the liver get there having formed in the gallbladder, passed out and into the bile ducts.
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hello
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Hi

I occasionally get a a slight dull ache under my right rib cage. The pain is not hard, not very painful, not severe, not sharp or it doesnt move to the back. It does not come on after eating, it comes on when and if it likes. For example its now 8 eight hours since i had lunch and nothing in between. I dont eat any fatty foods like burgers, fries or other fried stuff (although i used to weeks or months ago only at lunch while at work), I am not fat as well, im about 65kg, im slim, in my early 30's, but only my stomach looks bit fat thats all no other part of me.

The only other problem i have is i cant eat anything too big, i can only small portion otherwise i get full quick and sometimes feel bloated. Rennie doesnt work with me, i once tried Zantac - it made my bloatedness so worse i thought i was gonna burst. Thats it.

So, what im really concerned about is the slight dull ache i keep getting occasionally, its not constant either, it just comes and goes. Most part of the day there no ache at all.

Help.
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I no longer have a gallbladder so how did stones get in my liver?
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Stones may form in the bile ducts themselves.  Although most stones do form in the gallbladder, it is not extremely rare to have them form after the gallbladder is removed, in the bile ducts. There are rare incidences of liver stones formed from bile excess in the liver -- mostly in the Far East.  

I had gallstones saved from my gallbladder surgery (weird I know) but they bear no resemblance to the green globules that are called stones by the liver cleanse folks.  Even if you take a couple and soak them in the juice and oil mix, they do not turn into green globs.

So, I have to agree that removing gallstones with the concoction is not likely to have any merit. I do use some natural treatments -- I like complementary medicine that can take the best of traditional and non-traditional.  But the "false profiteers" as I call them, make a bad name for alternative medicine. Save the grapefruit juice for breakfast and leave the oil to salad dressing.
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I can only speak from my own experience. Taking out the gallbladder for most people causes many more problems. Whether one believes in a liver flush or not, I know that it worked for me. I read in forum after forum people who are suffering with pain just as intense as before their gallbladders were removed. I read something in a magazine that stated that modern medicine sees the world in closed and mechanistic terms. If something is wrong, take out the body part causing the problem or dispense a drug. this approach often screws up the dynamics of the body and ends up leading to more problems. You, yourself, in another post, state that you would probably still have your gallbladder if your thyroid problem had been diagnosed correctly. The way I see it is if we didn't need our gallbladders, we wouldn't have one to begin with. That you can live without your gallbladder is something different entirely. I encourage people to be proactive about their health. Do your research and surround yourself with health practitioners with differing opinions. You learn how to trust yourself and the decisions you make about YOUR body.
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I would have loved to have kept my gallbladder but it was inflamed past salvation even if we had been able to remove the "hundreds" of stones it was bulging with.  So, removing it was not optional at that point -- my fault for not finding a new doctor sooner.  And yes, I believe if I had a properly functioning thyroid before that -- it would not have become a problem. One thng, can indeed lead to another.  I don't think removing the gallbladder caused my problems now -- rather not removing it sooner is what caused my current problems.  

I have read many posts from those who have found help from the juice and oil cleanse.  I have an idea of one reason it might help.  One imaging test I had, the tech had me drink a can of pineapple juice before he did the scan -- he said it dialated the ducts.  So, that makes sense as to why some things might move better.  I just do not think all of the pictures I see online are really gallstones being purged.  But that is just what I think.  I thought you might be interested in the experiment.  I did that because I read online that if the more typically looking gallstones were in juice and oil, they too would look like that -- but they did not turn into green globs at all -- they just started to smell bad! If it does make you feel better, I wouldn't argue with that.  

If I find help for the pain I have right now -- I don't care if it is standing on my head while gargling Dr. Pepper -- if it works and doesn't look like it causes harm -- I would probably do it too.



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You hit the nail on the head, with your comment about the juice causing dialation.

Any food , drink, herb or drug causes things to expand,contract, bind, release, seperate  or effect  a return to neutrual when they flow thru something.

You pick the right tool for the job and  good results happen.


That's why a varied diet,mild emotions and exercise are  important to keep all these body actions going.

When the liver is sluggish from extreme emotions such as anger(As you mentioned before Astro) or because of toxins, further waste builds up and you have sludge and stone formation. This is then passed onto the gallbladder and you know what happens from their.
You must keep the flow going or your body acts like a stagnet pool of water.
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You can learn more about "Doctor" Hulda Clark at Quackwatch.com.  Clark fled the USA to Mexico to escape legal prosecution for fraud.  She is still in Mexico, and still peddles a whole range of 'flushes' and 'cleanses' as well as books.  She is making quite a tidy sum by taking advantage of the ill-informed and the desperate.  It really is unfortunate. I advise folks to check Clark out for themselves at Quackwatch.com.

Best regards,
Chicken Soup
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Recently I was diagnosed with a sluggish gallbladder.  No stones as I had an ultrasound and they detected no stones.  Did a HIDA scan and they said that my bile drip was only 14%.  Now here is my question.  Can this sluggish gallbladder problem be solved with something other than surgery.  I was told that eventually the gallbladder will get worse and eventually could end up causing problems with my pancreas.  Is that correct?  I really don't want surgery but I don't want to injure my pancreas either.  Can someone that's had a similar experience give me some advice.  Thanks for any help you can give me.

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I currently have  lrg stone in my gallbladder.  In the last 3 yrs, ive talked to the surgeon, but have refrained from ssurgery.  My discomfort has gone from every so often to almost everyday.  I was schduled to get the gallbladder out, last week then I cancelled.  I have an appointment with an accupunturest, I will try with his methods and chinese herbs to heal myself.  20 yrs ago I was diagnosed with this same problem.  I did the olive oil flush and still had pain.  The gastrologist said I had a spasmatic colon, and he didnt think it was gallbladder. Ive had IBS for a long time.  My sy,ptoms, back pain upper right pain, all indicate gallbladder. I dont want "the dumpying sydrome" chronic diariea. or phantom pain, after a gallbladder removal. So i will try this instead, and let you all know.  I have been doing lots of research.  Did you know liver and gallbladder problems stem from depression?  I believe this , Ive been veery depressed.  Your liver holds your anger, and gallbladder holds resentment interesting eh? This is the chinese theory.
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