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Have bad gallbladder - is pain on left side related?
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Have bad gallbladder - is pain on left side related?

I'm hoping there's somebody out there who's had gallstones or sludge that can tell me whether or not they've had pain more often on the left side of the body than the right.  An ultrasound confirmed that I have both sludge and stones, and after five months of pain and not knowing what's going on, I was thrilled to hear that the problem is something so easy to fix.  I know gallbladder pain is traditionally associated with the right side of the body, but up until a week and a half ago, I had no pain whatsoever on that side.  I have had a lot of upper back pain just to the left of my spine, tons of acid reflux, left rib pain, and before I had a lot of pain on my left side (hip / abdomen area), which has since subsided.  Now I have pain all over, but I'm wondering if anybody else has experienced pain like mine, more on the left side.  The ultrasound tech and the nurse I saw said pain on the left side of the body is fairly common, but the surgeon said those symptoms don't sound related.  Anybody have any insight?
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Avatar dr f tn
Hello and hope you are doing well.

Its unlikely that the pain on the left side is due to the gallbladder. The pain could be due to renal colic. Small stones can obstruct the passage of urine and when the body tries to 'push' against the blockade this results in colic, which is severe attacks of pain. The other causes for the pain could be infections of the bowel, prolapsed intervertebral disc or inflammatory diseases of the colon. Please discuss this with your doctor. He may do blood tests, x- rays and may ask for an ultrasonogram to find out the cause for the pain.  

Hope this helped and do keep us posted.
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Avatar m tn
ok heres my story ive had burning under both ribs the pain is like twins but the one on the right is the cuz of the left you can get pancrietis from gull bladder disfuntion im sure that could be causing it also nothing will show up in ultra sounds and mris you will need your pancreais tested and a hida scan to show your fraction percent if its lower then 40 remove it if its above 40 no also i had gerd, h-pylori and all that crap i think all these things come from the sick gull bladder cuz if you read eveyone has the same crap so also get tested for h-pylori if you dont take the medicine fro it you can get cancer or is linked to it i did a double treatment because i think i had it for a long time and been misdiagnosed for years because none of the crap shows up on ultra sound an mri so i did the hida scan years later and well i been suffering under both sides of the ribs because the crap squirts to the pancreais makes it all messed up but also check whats the organ that hold your blood um spleen ok so im looking at a picture here and amazingly the pancreis is located in the same spot as your stomache look here so get your hida scan, h-pylori, pancreais, spleen checked but look at this body and see where you hurt ok, i go wednesday to get my gull bladder removed and its not acting up after i made the appointment strange but its been bothering me since 1999 after i had ebv virus for 2 years all that crap hit me so i benn suffering on and off here is a picture of organs but please get the things tested as i said and how old are you?? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Man_shadow_anatomy.png
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Avatar f tn
Hi

I had exactly the same symptoms you had, pain in the left side for over 8 months especially when I eat greasy and wheat containing food, one time the pain on the left side was so severe that I had to go to the ER, they did ultrasound and told me you have small gallstones. I didn't believe them since my pain was on the left; I kept the same diet and it seems that the stones were getting bigger and bigger everyday, since after 6 months I started having pain on the right side, and the pain was growing fast every day.

They scheduled me for surgery, but I was able to get the biggest stone down before the surgery date, I did that by pushing my gallbladder after a hot bath that makes the ducts wider and makes it easier for the stone to come out, it was a dangerous thing to do since it could have stuck somewhere, but I took my chances.

Eventually, my left side pain was still there, and I felt that gallstones are forming again, after a year of struggling and searching around and trying all types of treatments and alternative medicine, none worked, eventually, I discovered that I have Vitamin D deficiency since I stay indoor a lot and don't get exposed to the sun enough even in summer, while in winter, the sun doesn't make Vitamin D at all here in NY.

After a month of Vitamin D supplementation, all my problems disappeared.
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Avatar m tn
Hello, I have left side pain. My ultrasound showed gallbladder sludge and a surgeon was recomended. He was not convinced it was the gallbladder and scheduled the HIDA scan and then Barium swallow test. My gallbladder would not even have the courtisy to show up! They waited longer but still could not see it so gave me morphine. The surgeon said that caused it to fill. Anyway, no measurement could be taken of how well it was working because it just would not show up in the test. Technicians said that was not a good sign. He had told me if it is altering my life have it out if not keep it. Because there are no stones or wall thickening. Had went on extreme diet for a month before Jan. attack, of raw veggies, smoothies. Doctor told me that was VERY bad for the system. But it was severe sharp, left side painful, spasms. Lost 17 pounds through all this but none on my diet.
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Avatar m tn
Appointment was yesterday and I am trying hard to decide whether to have the surgery or not. Everyone I know that has had it says I will feel much better and should get it over with. Still scares me though.
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Avatar f tn
I have pain on both sides below the ribs, on my right shoulder, mid back, sternum, collar bone area and mid back.  When I mentioned this to the surgeon, she did not act like it was uncommon.  I am scheduled for surgery next week and will be so relieved when it's over.  I know it's scary, but this has  become more of a 'quality of life' issue.  All of the complications of this surgery were 1% or less, which I believe is completely worth getting my life back.  Most of the blogs I've read where people were trying to avoid surgery typically had them suffering through multiple diets (none of which worked), deciding to get the surgery, and feeling 100 times better right after.  Good luck.
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Avatar f tn
I am three weeks post-surgery now and prior to this week I felt pretty dang great!  My surgeon told me that the left-sided pain was most likely something else, but since surgery, I have had no pain at all on that side of my body.  Apparently he was wrong.  :)  How are you feeling since surgery?  I've felt terribly nauseous for the past week, but didn't really have any nausea prior, unless I ate something my body didn't like, but then the nausea would only last an hour or two.  This nausea isn't going away.  Are you experiencing this at all?
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Avatar f tn
Mine was.  Since my gallbladder was popped out, I've had no further pain on the left side under my ribs.  It took them a long time to find out what was wrong, but apparently the left-sided pain was related to the gallbladder.  
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Avatar m tn
I have been in a lot of pain now for over a month. I was taken to hospital a few weeks ago, as I thought I was having a heart attack. I ended up being sent home, telling me my heart was fine, but I still had a lot of pain. The pain started around 3am, with major pains in mine spine, then left hand side of the chest. I now have constant pain in left chest, under ribs. I get pain also in the right side as well, and also in my back.
I had an ultrasound done, and yes lots of stones. I will go under the knife at the end of this week. I can't wait for the pain to stop, so I can eat again and sleep through the night.
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Avatar f tn
I totally sympathize with you. Prior to my surgery, I felt pain all through the mid portion of my torso, back and front. You will feel so much better after surgery, but remember to give it time because the healing takes time. I am just now starting to feel more like myself.  My surgery was April 1. Hang in there. It will be better.
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Avatar f tn
I forgot to mention that prior to surgery, the best advice I got was from the PA in the surgery department who asked me if I was eating any fat and I said "only lowfat". He said, "No, you can't eat any fat. Any fat will trigger pain."  After that I only ate non-fat stuff. Yes, it was hard, but the pain went down to a much tolerable level and since I had 3 wks till surgery and it was temporary, I knew I could do it.  If you are already doing this, I recommend you do. Good luck.
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Avatar f tn
I meant not already doing this.
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Avatar m tn
I hope your feeling better I have been suffering the last 8 months with pain in my left side I had ekg nuclear stress test 3 echocardiograms a ct scan endoscopy barium swallow and a abdominal ultrasound that showed lots of stones I m so afraid that the pain is not the gallbladder I have developed anxiety and


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Avatar m tn
I have been having pain on my left side and right side for over a yr now and they say its not my gallbladder but it feels that the pain is down where my gallbladder is
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Avatar f tn
I have gallstones after years of pain finally got ssanned April this year was meant to have surgery August but found out I was pregnant so they won't operate, my pain was always under my right rib and went around in to my shoulders and upper back with central tummy pain , now I get left sided pain to under my left breast rib and in my shoulder blade also middle back pain and pain in my stomache and all down my sternum it's  horrid been to a&e had an ecg said my heart was fine it panics me so much they juts take bloods say no sign of infections ect and send me home! I feel relieved to hear others have left sided pain to! This has got me so down I juts want to feel normal again and be able to eat
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Avatar f tn
I am due to have a scan on my gallbladder as I have had constant tenderness in/ under right rib cage when pressed for about a month....so doc has said could be inflammation. Today I have had pain,soreness in lower left and centre near ribs/sternum.feels bruised almost..is this connected to possible gallbladder pain,or likely to be something else. Really worried...it's the not knowing what's going on!
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Avatar m tn
good God....do you write in English?  It's hard to even follow what the heck you are saying
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Avatar m tn
good God....do you write in English.  It's hard to even follow what the heck you are saying...not a single period in your whole, long story!
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Avatar m tn
I know this post is almost two years old but in hopes this might help someone else, I'm going to say that it has been my experience that YES, you can have pain in your left abdomen from gallstones. It took six months for doctors to finally figure out why the medication they had prescribed for what they believed to be gastritis wasn't helping. It took a ct scan and an ultrasound to find out I had stones. My GP explained that it is found often with mothers, the symptoms of a diseased gallbladder are the same, however, the pain is reflected onto the upper left quadrant of the abdomen. It's been almost two years post surgery and I haven't had to cope with that awful pain and nausea since. Don't let anyone tell you pain on your left side isn't your gallbladder because there is that chance.
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Avatar m tn
I have had soe piching pains on left and right side found out i had inflamed stomach very very raw. still having pinching pains left and right side going for hida scan my stools arent very good he thinks this is my gallbladder . any answers would help me !!!!
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Avatar f tn
Thank you for your post. I have been having left side pain under my ribs and up through my shoulders. My mother had her gall bladder out after having me, and I was wondering if this could be a gall bladder issue after delivering my daughter 10 months ago. Any particular reason why mothers would feel it more on the left?
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Avatar f tn
Thanks for the information. I was referred by GP because of severe left upper quadrant pain and nausea which began over Christmas but by January was unbearable. My scan showed a large stone and sludge in my gallbladder and although I specifically asked the sonographer to check my pancreas, as this was where the pain was, I was told that the pancreas seemed clear. I have had pain in the centre and right side occasionally and I made sure I kept saying that mostly the pain and discomfort was on the left but no one seemed to want to confirm or deny that this was gallbladder related. I was scheduled for surgery in March but op was cancelled due to illness so now have a date for later this month. I am hopeful that this will be the end of this misery.
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Avatar f tn
Thank you for your post.  I am a mother too and have left sided pain.  I had a hida a while ago that showed a low functioning gallbladder.  The pain was on the right side.  I didn't do anything because the pain went away. Now the pain is not going away.  I had a baby 5 months ago.  A CT and an ultrasound have not shown anything.  I am having an endoscopic ultrasound to look closer.  I am hoping it is my gallbladder.  I'll post again when I know more.  
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Avatar f tn
I have had left side pain under my rib for 2 months now and just over the past 2 weeks I've developed right side pain. I've also had constipation, diarrhea, nausea and sometimes vomiting, headaches, chills and low grade fevers. It does hurt more when I eat. I've had all Upper GI test the only thing they found was red lining in my stomach and my Hida scan showed a high EF of 81% and I have heard a too high fraction can be bad also. Gallbladder disease runs on both sides of my family. I'm having my gallbladder removed first thing tomorrow so I hope this is the answer and solution to my problems I have a 13 month old baby boy I need to be healthy for. I hope and pray everyone else finds answers.
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Avatar f tn
I have had left upper abdominal pain/ left shoulder blade pain since january, and on occasion, nausea and horrible diarrhea accompanied the pain. I was first sent for a colonoscopy, which was a-ok, and then finally my PA scheduled a hidascan, which revealed a low functioning gall bladder. I see a surgeon on the 22nd, so hopefully I'll know more then.

Has anyone with similar symptoms to these also felt like the left part of your stomach was moving a lot and "knocking" really hard. Everything I have read about the gall bladder has talked about right side pain, which i do not have at all. My symptoms to however relate to those with pancreatitis, hmmmmm.....I just hope I get the answers to make it all go away, asap!
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Avatar f tn
My endoscopic ultrasound didn't show anything.  Now I am going to have another Hida scan.  The last one was 5 years ago and it shows low functioning gallbladder.  Let us know if you find out if the left sided pain ended up going away with gallbladder surgery as it did for others in this thread.  Thanks!
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Avatar f tn
Aevans93, did your pain go away after surgery?  
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Avatar m tn
I started having pain in my left arm that was dull and achy. It came and went, but there always a discomfort in my left arm. My family has had history of gallbladder issues. Both my parents had gallbladder surgery and my older sister as well. From what I can say...and from what my mom has told me, she's convinced I am beginning to show signs of gallbladder problems also. At first, I thought I was having a heart attack as the pain went from my left arm to my chest...I was relieved when I realized a gallbladder attacks can mimic a heart attack. As the days went by...the pain began to radiate to my right side as well as my left side...so I'm in pain on both sides. My lower back can ache and hurt and then my upper back starts to ache as well.

Though a few months prior, I had blood work done to test my TCH level and it turns out I have Hypothyroidism. I don't know if these sudden pains have anything to do with my thyroid or not, but I'm assuming my medication needs to be adjusted. Without medical insurance, you're pretty much screwed.

I'm still dealing with these random pains and discomfort...I just hope other people can give me some answers so I can have a peace of mind.
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Avatar f tn
I was told every time you have a child- it stresses your gall bladder out. So the more children the more gall bladder problems. With my 4th child I was sick constantly! There was nausea, vomiting & pain.. I had to suffer through until he was born the Drs said. But 6 months into my pregnancy, I had a bad car accident and lost my baby. Afterwards, they put me on percocet pain meds for broken pelvis, hips etc.. That also caused my gallbladder to act up! The Hidalgo scan said 0% function! But Dr refused to operate bc of all the trauma and surgery I'd already been through! I got down to a size 0.  I couldn't eat anything but crackers. Then they put birth control bc I couldn't get pregnant in that condition. Guess what? Same deal as being pregnant to your gall bladder. I finally got better & stopped the meds and stayed away from greasy or spicy foods. It calmed down - no problems! Ten years later, I was put back on pain meds for arthritis  & AVN. (bc of accident) This time it had to come out, I was sick as a dog for months but no insurance- so the hospital would do Nothing! Finally got insurance and it was removed - what a relief!
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Avatar f tn
OMG, I'm in the same exact boat as u!! Originally went to dr for stomach pain. Did no tests, assumed it was an ulcer cuz I told him my symptoms of normal pooping mixed w a tiny bit of Constiaption here and there.. He had me go to lab and get tested for h-pylori, which was negative, and a thyroid test, and nothing wrong there either.. He put me on some ulcer medication, not knowing for sure if I even had an ulcer. Felt good for two days, went back cuz of chest pain and shoulder pain and back pain, stomach pain on top of that, but only on the left side of my stomach.. Checked my vital signs, all was good and told me its anxiety and sent me home. Week or so later, had bad stomach pain again, w a little nausea, Cold and hot, back pain, then started throwing up. All pain got worse, went to er, got EKG, which was fine, got CT scan, which was fine, and an ultrasound that showed I had some "sludge" in my gallbladder and there was some inflammation. ER diagnosed me w "Bilary colic", but that's only when I'm having an attack. Referred me to a surgeon. While waiting for the appt w the surgeon, I went back to dr for severe chest pain, right shoulder pain,stomach pain on the left side of stomach ,  and horrible back pain. SEVERE. I told him about my ER visit and that I have "sludge". He said it's not a big deal, and ur symptoms probably r not from ur gallbladder cuz u don't have stones, and that my gallbladder is on the right side so left side pain can't be gallbladder problems.... He also said I wouldn't need to have it taken out. He told me to c a psychiatrist and prescribed me some Xanax temporarily while I waited for my future appts cuz he's probably sick of seeing me and thinks I'm a hypochondriac.. Which I am, but still. Met w surgeon, he was not convinced that my my symptoms r from my gallbladder "sludge" either, mainly because pain is on left side of stomach. Surgeon referred me to GI specialist. They did a colonoscopy and an endoscopy. Took biopsie to test for celiac disease, which was negative. Went for my follow up w GI specialist, and she said all is fine, there's nothing wrong w me. I said but I have sludge in my gallbladder and I'm Having full on gallbladder stone symptoms. She says to c psychiatrist also.... Thanks. Went back to surgeon. He's trying to say I have IBS.. I don't have diahrea, just very light constipation here and there, but I poop everyday. So, I said I wanted a HIDA scan. He said ok. If HIDA scan comes back normal, am I going to accept that it's just IBS? I said idk yet. It's Saturday, and my HIDA scan is this Tuesday. I hope this isn't IBS and I hope it is just my gallbladder, cuz I kno there is no cure for IBS and I heard the medications can make u even sicker sometimes...  Idk if I should get my gallbladder taken out or not.. Surgeon has pretty much said if it's ruining ur life, then get it removed, if it's not, keep it in, but u might still have problems after u get it taken out... Any insight would be great.
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Avatar f tn
I also have never had any kids. I'm very skinny, 110lbs and 5'5. I do not drink alcohol, I do smoke tho, that's it. I don't eat as good as I should, but I kno people that eat way worse than me and have no problems...
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Avatar f tn
Actually ten days ago I got my gallbladder removed. On the sixth day I started feeling heaviness and burning under my ribs after drinking a glass of milk early morning. On the eighth day a severe pain and heaviness started, eventually there was pain on the back side. I went to my doctor who recommended drip with painkiller and rises , I was hospitalised and suggested test of pancreas and blood. My pancreas were normal but there were signs of infection in blood. I was given antibiotic and omeprozole. Then he told me before being discharged from hospital that he might get me tested for h.pylori. You know I didn't have pylori before , what happened I got the infection immediately after surgery. What do you say...?
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17886908 tn?1461086129
Hi Jodeeh,
I don't think you are a hypochondriac.  I would be mad to if doctors kept insisting I see a shrink.  You know your body better than anybody else.  Gallbladders can be diseased and not function properly with or without stones.  I have been dealing with gallbladder issues for over 20yrs!  I was too chicken to have the surgery back when I was working and had decent insurance.  Now my deductible is so high, I would almost have to re-mortgage my house just to pay.  I don't work because I am caring for elderly parents, one is totally blind and the other has Dementia, so it's stressful.  My husband's insurance is crappy, so I just avoid doctors as much as possible.  Here lately I've been dealing with an inflamed gallbladder.  It's getting to the point that it's hard to ignore the symptoms and pain, so I'm sure I will eventually have to have mine removed.  By the way, my first HIDA scan showed my gallbladder function at 20%.  That was years ago.  Then 3yrs ago, I had another one done and it was 91% which is overactive.  Crazy right!  The bottom line is it isn't functioning properly. If your gallbladder has sludge/sand or whatever they want to call it, it can still not be functioning properly and be diseased.  You probably still need to get it removed.  I just hate to think of removing an organ that I was born with, but I've also heard some people have more post diarrhea and can't eat certain foods after they have theirs removed.  Anyway.. my SIL was only 22yrs old and very thin.  She had stones and a bad gallbladder.  She ended up having to have emergency surgery cause a stone stuck in the main bile duct and started causing jaundice and her liver was trying to shut down!  She had hers removed and eventually healed and her liver started functioning again, but she almost let hers go too far.  I'll tell you the thing I have done to help with the pain and problems from having a bad gallbladder and has allowed me to get by this long without surgery.  You might want to try a good Milk Thistle (great for liver and gallbladder) supplement.  I also take Dandelion and recently ran across a product from Germany called Rowachol.  Google and do some research on those products.  May be they might help you, if you want to try and keep your gallbladder and avoid the surgery.  Good luck!  
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17886908 tn?1461086129
I also forgot to add that most of my gallbladder pain is usually in my back rather than in my right front abdominal area.  From time to time I have a dull pain on my left side to!  No stones have ever shown up on my ultrasounds or other tests.  They told me my gallbladder was sludgy.  Another symptom of gallbladder problems is light or clay colored stools.  I have been experiencing that for a while now.  
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Avatar f tn
For the last week I have been scared about having GB surgery. I have it removed on June 1st..Was diagnosed 3 yrs ago with Diverticulitis and now gallstones. ON the good side they haven't obstructed ducts. I'm fatigued, nauseous to say the least. I'm not scared of the surgery, I'm scared about what I'm going to be like after the surgery. I've been on a healthy diet for over a month now and it *****. I'm 60 yrs old and have treated my body like I was 20 for all these years. Now I'm paying the price. Even if I get my GB removed I still have to watch my diet and now all I think about is how to come up with some tasty recipes to make. I mean I'm craving a Subway right now. lol..and a beer! I'm from the 70's. We always did what we wanted. It's no fair...Like my Mom always said, things could be worst!
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Avatar f tn
I have had a few days with clay colored stools but they went away when I started drinking a smoothie of kale, blueberries, apple and banana. Also, 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar mixed in bottle water each morning upon waking will help. I'm scheduled for surgery June 1st and do get nauseous every morning but it goes away when I drink the apple cider vinegar.
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