Digestive Disorders / Gastroenterology Expert Forum
pancreatitis
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pancreatitis

Has anyone ever had pancreatitis? I am wondering if I this is what is causing my left side pain under my rib cage.  This appears at any time of day or night and lasts several hours.  The pain feels like I have been running and got a side ache almost under my breast. My doctor has not suggested this, he is trying to ignore my symptoms for some reason.  He found a small liver cyst, 2 weeks ago and then sent me for blood work.  When he called for the results of my bloodwork he said to me "basically your bloodwork is normal"  I'm going to call it normal.  Then he said he wanted to see me in six months for another ultrasound of liver.  In the meantime this side pain persists on a daily basis. So if anyone knows anything about pancreatitis or that has had it, could you please tell me what your symptoms are. Thanks
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11 Comments
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I doubt it's pancraetitis. Pancreatitis is usually in the middle and goes RIGHT threw to the center of the back. It's usually worse when lying down and it's PAINFUL. I however didn't like what your doc said about the liver cyst and blood work. If that were me......I'd tell him to shove the six months up his *** and MOVE ON to another MD. Get a second opinion. Don't play around or wait around. Second and even third opinions are always BEST!
It's your health.
--Mark
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If you had Pancreatitis you would know it!  The pain is normally starts out on your RIGHT side underneath your ribcage.  Eventually the pain will shoot through the middle of your stomach and to your back.  It is the most god awful pain you will ever experience in your life.  In my opinion it was worse than any labor pains I ever experience. Read down farther in this forum.  TazLady has posted many things in regards to Pancreatitis as well as Concerned Lady.  There is alot of information on this subject, you just have to scroll down to find it.  Best of luck to you.
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Nanny,

Pancreatitis usually involves more than just left side pain.  The pain for most is in the mid portion of the upper abdomen close to the sternum and it often radiates straight to the back.  Initial pain is frequently soon after ingestion of a meal, but once the pancreas becomes irritated the pain becomes more constant.   Many people feel nausea at the same time, some experience vomiting.  Sometimes there is unexplained weight loss that is due to malabsorption of nutrients that the damaged pancreas cannot properly digest.

The pain and other symtoms (symptoms) are more than an annoying ache.  It is sharp and can be very excrutiating, and can usually only be lessened by the use of powerful pain medications.

In regard to your dissatisfaction with your doctor's response to your bloodwork, and his lackidaisical attitude about looking further into the cause for your pain, I would suggest that you find another doctor!  You need to find a specialist
that will keep on searching and testing until he or she can find the cause of your pain.  Good luck.

Nanny
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Thanks everyone for your support.  I thought my doctor's response was weird but what else is new.  It seems you have to have a medical emergency before you ever get any direct answers.  So thanks again, hopefully I'll be able to geett this figured out soon.
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I have the exact the same symptoms as you are experiencing.
I had my gallbladder removed in February. Ever since then I
have had the stabbing pain under my tib cage.  I have not gone
back yet to see what it is.  Was hoping it would just go away!
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To 3dee:  I had my gallbladder out 6 years ago.  I wonder if it is related?  Do you also have swelling with it?  If yoou ever find out what it is culd you share it with me?
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Just an idea.  Ask for a copy of your blood work.  I always do that now and check and see what your amalyse and lipase levels are.  If they are high it would indicate pancreatitis.  Just another piece of the puzzle.  Good luck.
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etphonehome,

I just read your post about the swelling.  Do you have swelling, too, and where is it located?  Do you have any other symptoms?  

Also, get a copy of that bloodwork as Squash recommended.  Elevated amylase or lipase levels would suggest pancreatitis, but surely your doctor would have told you that....ah, right?  I just heard about a person that had pancreatitis diagnosed and noted in the records several times, and the doctor never even told the person, just kept saying they were okay.  You can imagine how upset this person was when this was found out!  Always get copies of all your records, they are YOUR records, and by law, you are entitled to see and have them.

Post back if you have any of the other symtoms (symptoms) mentioned.  People sometimes get chronic pancreatitis after gallbladder surgery.
Nanny
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Nanny:  Yes there is swelling around my left side rib cage.  It is noticeable to all including dr. ultrasound technician.  And when you touch it, it feels kind of squeeshy and when the pain is worse, the swelling is worse.  The pain sometimes goes into my back but not always and I also have had pain in the left breast with it.  Zantac helps. Thanks for your interest.
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Nanny:  I also have been having recurrent bladder infections, have had 5 in the last 6 months, he did a catscan on my abdomen, in Feb. and the only thing he said they found was a calcified vein in left kidney.  I had a kidney stone in June of 99 and almost died from it.  Became septic, and developed Acute Respiratory Sydrome, was in i.c.u. for 12 days on life support.  When this swelling first became apparent after the catscan of course, I went to dr. and he thought it was a hernia.  He sent me to a surgeon, she spent 5 minutes with me and told me it was a fat desposit(????)  I left there feeling foolish, I am about 15 lbs. overweight, but no one else I know that has fat do they complain about it, anyway I'm not that fat.  So I like my dr. but he concerns me, he has giving me a refill perscription for antibiotics for the next time I get a bladder, kidney infection, sounds like he doesn't want to see me.  Having almost lost my life once due to drs. giving me the run around, I am rather concerned.  So...... I don't think I have left anything out this time.
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Looking at this again, I would suggest you find another physician, specifically a gastroenterologist, that will investigate both the swelling and the pain further.  You didn't say what your current doctor's specialty is, if any.  And I have my doubts about a surgeon that can diagnose something as a fat deposit without further examination.  As far as I am aware, and I may be wrong, generally fat deposits do not cause pain.  I know they cause swelling, but the fact that the swelling subsides and returns with pressure leads me to believe that it may be something else entirely.  Swelling is unually caused by inflamation (inflammation), and will come and go as the inflamation (inflammation) dissipates and returns.

BTW, you asked in your first post if anyone had ever had pancreatitis.  I wanted to clarify to you that I have had three acute pancreatitis attacks and I now have chronic pancreatitis.  Swelling in my abdomen was very visible in the area affected, and that area was particularly painful to pressure.  The pain was excrutiating all throughout the abdomen, behind the sternum, through to the back anyways, but any pressure on the swollen area was even more intense.  This was due to an irritated, enlarged pancreas and the presence of pseudocysts within.  The pain behind the sternum was caused by compression of the stomach which was being squeezed by the enlarged pancreas.  I'm not saying this is what you have.  All I'm trying to say is that I think you need another opinion and some more thorough testing, preferably a CT-scan or ultrasound of the area to "see" what is behind the source of your pain and swelling.  Good luck.  I will post another message at the top to make sure you catch this one.
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