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continuing pain years after gall bladder surgery
I have pain still and know people who have continuing pain after having our gall bladders removed. Is this wide-spread among gall bladder patients and is it common? Sometimes it is so bad that it feels like someone shoved a fist through the left side of my thoracic back area and is squeezing my insides tightly or like someone shoved a big pole or dull knife through that area, where my right shoulder blade is but deeper inside of me. I also have very painful ribs/rib area on my right side, back and front too and the area inside of me where the gall bladder was is painful also. Sometimes, I feel something moving or clicking back and forth right under my breast-bone/upper front rib area where my gall bladder used to be, depending on my movements. If it is staples/clips, could this be causing the pain?
My surgery was about 20 years ago. What kind of test is done to find problem clips/staples or even surgery tools left behind?  
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Since I don't know how to edit my post yet, I need to correct it here. The pain is all on the right side. I mistakenly wrote in one part of the post that I had pain on the left side.
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I have the same pain as you are describing and I find it seems to come on after eating something high in saturated fat.  I had my GB out two years ago.  Pain meds do not help at all.  A warm or cold compress seems to help with the pain.  I keep wondering if something went wrong during surgery, or if its just the way our bodies work with no gallbladder.  And they say it's an organ we don't need.  Right.  I don't believe that.  I couldn't have lived with it the way it was though.  It's a tough spot for all of us.
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I have no idea what the mumbo jumbo of numbers is within my comment.
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Hello and hope you are doing well.

Any structural abnormalities like post op inflammations or abscess can be detected by an ultrasonogram or CT scan. The other causes for the pain could be gastritis, peptic ulcer disease and GERD. Disorders of the liver and colon could also cause pain. Kidney disorders too produce colicky and sharp pain. Sometimes anxiety with flatulence can cause this pain. Discuss these options with your consulting doctor.

Hope this helped and do keep us posted.
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Hi Hope1313,
I have exactly the same symptoms as you have mentioned...what did the doctor say?
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I am having the same symptoms after 25 years of my gallbladder surgery I have been having excruciating pain in my ribcage area and almost like gallbladder pain all over again.. I had xrays done today and when the doc had them on the lighted panel I could see the staples in the image at the exact areas I am having my pain. When I asked her what those were she quickly pulled th film and walked out of the room to converse with another person.. I could hear them muttering something.. Then she walked in and said we really don't see any cause for the pain you described.. and I asked her again about the staples I saw.. she said oh those would not cause any problems. I felt like I was being lied to so tomorrow I am going to get a second opinion from elsewhere since I feel they fear I will sue them.
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Had my GB removed 18 months ago. Since then probably 4/5 attacks of this excruciating pain. Once I was hospitalised with it. Sick
(no pun intended) of visiting doctor. He has no answer, just keeps shoving anti-acids down my throat. Pancreatitis has been mentioned which scares the c... out of me but still nothing definate diagnosed. Like most people if I had an answer I could deal with it better
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I see alot of people on the web w the same upper right back pain after gall bladder removal, but no one ever saying they got better and never a medical reason. This scares me. I had my gall bladder removed in Sept 2013, the pain in my upper right back by and around my shoulder blade is getting worse. It hurts the worst at night, i can hardly sleep the pain is so severe. I have no insurance so i cant go have a ton of tests done or get pain meds. Im miserable. Anyone ever find an answer???
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My doctor suspects SOD. However when he went to do ERCP he saw too much inflammation in my stomach and decided it was too risky to get pressures or to "split the sphincter". I am in horrible pain and don't quite understand the "risks". Does anybody have any insight on this? Thanks in advance.
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VWR
I had my GB removed in 2005 and the pain in the surgery areas are not getting better, often I feel sharp pain in my lower right ribcage. I'd scream when it happens as it comes so quickly and unexpectedly, sometimes I wish I did not get my GB removed because not only I have to deal with the pain still and I have to deal with those big scars which I did not have before the surgery. BTW, because I have Keloid skin type so those little cuts from the surgery are now turned into huge scars and they keep growing bigger in size...
I told my doctor about this pain and she did nothing about it, I guess it's comment that the pain continues years after surgery and it's comment that doctors do nothing about it.
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They say we can live without the darn thing (Gallbladder) but at what cost.  I am really disappointed that there has not been more research on how to keep it in and remove the stones.  We all have the same symptoms but they can't tell us what's going on.  So I have to go to ER before they'll give me some strong Norco to deal with this daily pain that keeps disrupting my life.  Sure we can function without the pills but not without always thinking about this stabbing pain on the right side of our bodies and the thought that we'll eventually get cancer or already have it.  I am so sick of this syndrome whatever it is I just want it to go away so I can live.  Give me my GB back!!
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I had my GB removed in 2008.  During the last 2 1/2 years, I've had excruciating pain in my epigastric area.  The pain generally occurs after eating something high-fat (and when I'm stressed out).  I've been to the ER twice because the pain was so bad. The attacks come on suddenly and I become diaphoretic, unable to ambulate or speak.  The pain lasts for about 45 minutes on average.  I imagine the pain must be similar to having a knife plunged into my abdomen over and over.  I was diagnosed with gastritis but I don't know anyone with gastritis who has symptoms like mine.  I take Prilosec and Zantac but I still have attacks.  I had the same pain BEFORE my cholecystectomy.  Honestly, I don't have a lot of faith in doctors, at this point.
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My husband is feeling the same way. The pain in the right side never goes away nothing helps all the way. He had several tap. Locks due to them saying it was nerve damage. And it helpe  with certain parts but the most severe spot right under the rib is horrible.
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Did you ever find the cause, or cure, for this? Almost exactly my pain.
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I understand I have clips on top of my kidney and they hurt, had a doctor tell me the same. I just walked away depressed ! No one know till they go through it ! I Wish you my best, and I Pray you get a good doctor !
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I am nearly 12 yrs post-cholecystectomy and still experience pain in the gallbladder region (right side of my back in rib cage area).  I have had several gallbladder-like episodes through the years, the most recent a couple weeks ago.  It was debilitating -- to the point of not being able to drive home from a work-related meeting.  I sat in my car doubled over in extreme pain for several hrs.  I didn't go to the ER... I just can't spend the money to have them tell me they don't know what it is.  I feel like another one is coming on now which is what led me to search YET AGAIN online to find out what is going on.  

Statistics say that 10% of us who've had our gallbladders removed go through this but I wonder if it isn't actually much higher.  
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I have all the above symptoms after gallbladder removal in 2006. Also if I lie on my back I cannot put my right arm above my head or e pain under my right rib cage is excruciating. Any explanations at all out there.
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I am having the very same symptoms as described above, after having GB removed. I was fine for the first 2 years, but now am having very sharp pains right where my GB was that keep me awake at night, and keep getting worse. It will go away for a week or so, but come back on me. Where is the medical world in this problem that looks like many suffer with.
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I have all the same pain as you all, plus at times a burning sensation just like when I had to have my GB removed. It's been about eight  years now and I still have trouble. The belching and passing gas, sometimes it just like it was before.  I also have the tenderness around the GB area as well. Loads of fun. My best friend had hers out  a long time before I ever did and I can remember her hurting so bad. I didn't understand what she was going through, but I sure do now.
I hope we all can find relief.  
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Have any of you noticed if tha pain occurs after eating a particular food? Mine has been pretty constant lately, and perhaps TMI, but I've had light colored stools the past couple of weeks...Help!!
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Yes. I find it seems to come on after eating something high in saturated fat.  I had my GB out two years ago.  Pain meds do not help at all.  A warm or cold compress seems to help with the pain.  I keep wondering if something went wrong during surgery, or if its just the way our bodies work with no gallbladder.  And they say it's an organ we don't need.  Right.  I don't believe that.  I couldn't have lived with it the way it was though.  
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PCS - post cholecystectomy syndrome.  Please ALL of you look this up.  I too suffer same symptoms. GB out in 2008 and I've bowel issues every since.  The horrible pain at times JUST LIKE a GB attack 10times over.  Just happened to me 2 days ago and lasted about 45 mins.  Trying to find answers myself and I discovered PCS.  Sure does sound like us!  A possible answer?
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Have same kind of pain since my gallbladder was removed over four years ago. It is definitely related to high fat foods and normal sized (for most people) portions.  When I found out my sugar was elevated, I cut out sugar.  Two days later, the pain was gone.  Three days later, I ate crackers (vegetable thins) (probably too many) and the pain came back.  Also red sauce is a trigger.  Too much lemon too.  I am now trying to cut my serving size down, stay away from sugar and high fat foods.  Let's see what happens!  Good luck, everyone.
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I too have pain there...it hurts sometimes so bad I can't move.  One xray showed in that exact spot the staple left from my gallbladder surgery.  Flatulence is a different pain...this is a sharp tugging pain.  Could scar tissue play a role in it around the staple?
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