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Have bad gallbladder - is pain on left side related?
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The gallbladder is a pear-shaped organ underneath your liver that stores bile and most often gives you trouble when something, like a gallstone, blocks the flow of this bile. Discuss topics including gallbladder attacks, gallbladder removal, gallstones, and inflammation.

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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?
22 Comments Post a Comment
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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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