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Avatar universal

Alternative to Surgery--Gallbladder Flush

I have been experiencing constant pain in my right back side for some time now.  The pain increases after eating.  Also, I experience severe pain & burning sensations if I drink an alcoholic beverage (beer, wine, mixed drink, the type of drink does not matter).  I rarely drink, but if and when I decide to have one, I usually experience quite a severe burning sensation that does not provide any relief from antacids such as Riopan.  

Recently, I had an ultrasound performed to check for gallstones.  The ultrasound did not show any stones.  My doctor then scheduled me for a hepatobiliary test which apparently shows how the gallbladder is functioning.  A radio active dye is injected in the vein and the patient must lie still on back for 1-1/2 hours or more while a large camero over the abdomin takes pictures about every 5 minutes to monitor the flow the of radioactive dye.  My doctors office called me a few days after the test to let me know the test showed some gallbladder dysfunction and they scheduled me for a consultation visit with a surgeon. No discussion, no alternative solutions, just SURGERY!  NOT!!!!!!

I really do not want surgery, so I started doing to some research to see if there are any alternatives.  I realize the medical community or industry does not usually look favorably on holistic medicine (no money in herbs I guess), and this is something I have never been involved with.  However, after reading quite a bit about the process called "gallbladder flush" (which aids the body in passing gallstones), I am inclined to give this a try.  

If a patient has an undiagnosed weak liver or sluggish liver, then removing the gallbladder because of stones really isn't solving the root of the problem that caused the stones in the first place is it?.  If the gallbladder is removed it seems to me like it would become more congested because the bile storage is now gone!  Granted the bile still flows from the liver, but the liver does not contract or squirt the bile out like the gallbladder does therefore contributing to backup of bile in the liver (hence more development of stones??).  This would explain why so many people still have problems with the same types of food. If the gallbladder is removed because of stones, where do the stones come from that afflict many patients with blocked bile duct after the gallbladder is removed---the liver that is now congested or has been congested all along?  It appears to me that the stones begin their develop in the liver and then eventually over time collect in the gallbladder.  So what does removing the gallbladder really solve?  Did it increase the health and vitality of the liver?  

Why not offer the gallbladder flush to patients?  If the body can naturally expell the stones or the majority of stones by this means, why not offer it to patients before the drastic measure of surgery?  My father had his gallbladder removed after suffering for years....and you know what?....he still suffers from pain and experiences problems with certain foods.  Wow what a solution to his problem.

The "gallbladder flush" I am referring to consists of virgin cold-pressed olive oil and the juice of fresh lemon.  There are also herbs available that one can take for about a month prior to doing the flush that help break up and stones for easier passing.  
Do you or have you ever discussed the "gallbladder flush" with your patients?  Have you done any research on this natural alternative?

23 Responses
Avatar universal
Dear Dianne,
I suggest that you check our archives to learn more about the different tests to assess gall bladder function.  Our archives are also replete with stories from patients who had their gall bladders removed for atypical pains (there is a characteristic type of pain for gall bladder problems.  Many of these patienys had the same pains after surgery.

Pain solely with alcohol is not suggestive for a gall bladder problem.  Talk to your doctor again regarding other possible explanations for your symptoms as well as his thoughts regarding the benefits of surgery in your case.

You are correct that gall bladder flushes are not part of the diagnostic options that doctors consider.  A weak or sluggish liver is not a result of gall bladder problems or surgery.  Although we are learning more about the beneficial roles of various natural substances, the medical establishment usually requires proof of efficacy.  This means treating to groups odf patients (one with the natural substance, the other with standard therapy).  IF the natural product is as effective as the established treatment, then there is a basis to use the natural approach.  Testamonials of efficacy by some individuals do not mean anything.  As far as I know, the gall bladder flush has not been studied to determine whether it has any benefit for patients.
Avatar universal
Are the stones for gallbladder first formed in the liver then transfer to the gallbladder?
Avatar universal
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Avatar universal
I am really not sure.  According to some things that I have read, if a person has a sluggish or congested liver, the stones can be developed in the liver.  Regarding the gallbladder, since the bile is in a more concentrated state, certain chemistry changes creates favorable environment to develop stones in the gallbladder.  I made an appointment with my doctor for Monday, January 17 to get more detailed information on the liver, gallbladder, and stones.

Avatar universal
I am 29 years old and 140 lbs/5'8" tall, I had my gallbladder removed February 98 in London, Ontario (where I lived).

I first noticed pain one day in August/97, it came on so fast I fell to the floor...it felt like very bad hunger...just below my breast bone...this continued for about a half hour and then I got another one.  The next day I went to the Doctor and she said it was an ulcer...without doing a blood test first!  She wanted to start me on medication...but I wanted to wait for the test.  It came back negative.  

In September/97 I had another 5 attacks, I went back to the Doctor and she said it was stress....hmmm, I thought...ok...it could be.  So I took anti-stress seminars...didn't help!  Then the attacks started to last several hours at a time.  They were very intense, no highs or lows, and it was difficult to breathe, walking made it worse, so I sat at the kitchen table for hours, praying for it to go away. Stress???

So I went back to the Doctor again in October...she said it was stomache acid!  ok...I thought.  I avoided chocolate, alcohol, tomatoes, citrus etc. still it didn't help.  She finally sent me for an ultrasound in November/97.  It came back positive for multiple gallstones.  She said it's minor surgey and not to worry about it!

So when I went to see the Surgeon in December/97 he asked me how many attacks I have had so far...I said 19 (I didn't think anything of it)  he was astonded and ordered surgery asap!  That didn't take place until Feb/98!

I did learn finally at the time of seeing the surgeon, that fat causes the pain....I lost 22 lbs before the surgery.  I was terrified of eating anything, as everything gave me pain.  I was scared to go out anywhere for having the pain in public.

After the surgery, when I was at home...I must say that the incisions (4) were REALLY sore!  It took me 2-3 months to be able to sleep slightly comfortable.  It was very sore to walk, laugh, reach up, down, turn door knobs, sit on the couch...getting up from the bed or couch was a real chore!

That was nothing, until one day in March when I had my first post-surgery gallbladder attack!  Yes it can happen afterwards!  The surgeon didn't believe me...come back when you have had 5 attacks....!!!  5 came and went...he did nothing...  I was really mad at this point...I'm not waiting months again for someone to do something....

I ended up visiting the ER MANY times throughout the next 2 months.  I had another 16 attacks....these all lasted 4-5 hours each!  They finally refered me to a Gastroenterologist, he did an ERCP after many weeks of waiting on the list on May 27/98.  It came back negative!  

Since then it has taken a long time (Aug.99) to be able to eat anything I want to.  I have no pain, no attacks, no cramps, and no diarrea.  I had several months of heartburn and reflux...but everything seems to be fine now!

Hmmmm.....how delectible brownies are again!!!!

Avatar universal
I have just gone through the same radio active test and my results was a non functioning gallbladder.
I am unsure as to have surgery or not. In the past I had hepititis B and really would like to know how this could effect me.
Im only 37 years old and I live in a remote part of Alaska, so medical needs are not always there for me. I have to travel quite far to see a doctor.
I would also like to see a reply to your question. And my own question, what do you normally do with a non functioning gallbladder that shows no stones.

                         Thank You
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