Avatar universal

RUQ pain - no diagnosis

Ok, maybe someone can give me a little insight into what to look for.  I have had pain under might right ribs extending into my back at times for three weeks. A little stomach upset, but only mild - no vomiting - a little loose stool which fiber helps.

34 years old - overweight (285)
Ultrasound - normal
Blood work - normal
CT scan - only indication is slightly enlarged spleen

Have been on Cipro for one week
Have taken flagyl for three days - just stopped because of side effects maybe from flagyl (headace, chills, stomach spasms).

Pain is not diminishing.

I'm thinking the gall bladder.  My doc is looking at diverticulitus, but my pain is in upper right quadrant, not the usual place for this.  I know he's going to try barium enema next.  Should I push for a hidascan?  Other things I should ask about?

I'm also concerned about potential for malignancies.  I smoked for 10 years and quit 5 years ago.  I haven't had any symptoms of lung cancer such as blood, or coughing - never the less, my body feels "funny".  It's hard to describe.  Not a good diagnostic description, I know.  It feels like a pressure - like a softball has been shoved inside my ribs and is pushing everything around.
109 Responses
Avatar universal
I've been suffering from somewhat the same symptoms since the end of January.  I started a new, stressful job then and by the end of the first week felt like someone was sqeezing the breath out of me (really hard to get a good, deep breath)and felt that awful pressure at the bottom of right rib cage.  I've been to the doc, who suggested wearing looser clothes and did bloodwork.  The only thing found thru the bloodwork was a thyroid problem!  The pressure has let up some, due to the looser clothes, but it's still there.  It gets worse under stress and when I eat something unusual (like Chinese food).  I finally talked to my mom about it and she tells me that she had almost identical symptoms ~20 years ago on the LEFT side, which her doctor labeled IBS.  She said that you can get trapped gas in your colon, which then presses on your rib cage and causes discomfort.  I'm going to the doc today and I'm going to ask if that can really happen!  

I understand what you mean about worrying though, my 38 year old cousin died last year of liver/kidney cancer, so it's scary....

From what I've heard, if it's gall bladder, do your symptoms worsen after eating?  I've started writing everything done, so I'll remember!

Good Luck to you!
Avatar universal
i had pains on right side under ribs and it woudld go up and into back and all in chest some time but on right  and would hurt real bad let up come back  for hours   i have been to emergency many times   to make a long story short  it would go into my face and jaws gums  and have been tested more than once for hear attack and heart problems   they could not tell for sure   stll cant tell some time i still have pains and nausea and stuff  but it seems to have helped after i had gallbladder surgery   i have been i the hospital since then withe chest and abdominal pains  and face pain   but not quit e like that    i have a mild coronary artery desease and mild mitral valve prolapse dont have to take medicinefor it thank GOD  but any way  i have reflux esophogits  and some ailments   do you have these type of things     ok  about the test  i had been tested through the years for gallbladder problem because of the symptoms  i mentioned above  i am talking for several years   even the doctor in emergency room said he thought i had gallbladder problem   ihad ultrasounds  upper gi  lower gi  hediscan   i the first hidiscan i had was orderd by a emetgency doctor  a woman doctor she asked me if i ever had a hidiscan and i said idont think so which to my knowledge i had not   any again i had one and nothing show that made them thik problem then i had another hidiscan by my gastrointerologist  and nothing   finally on time later the same gastro doctor said he wanted me to have a nother hidiscan and guess what   it showed the gallbadder was not functioning normal  and sent me to a surgeron  that surgern had problem of whether to remove gallbladder so i told m y gastro dr that i waterd a second opinion and i wanted that other surgeon any way   so my gastro dr said we will get a second opinion because he thought it should comeout  well i had gallbladder surgery  oct 14 1999 and i feel the difference   i stll have some gass and other stuff but it is so better   that pain is no like that i had PRAISE GOD  but my family dr and gastro dr said it takes a while 6 mo to year for things to be ok and stuff it help me like i said i have stomach and abdomen pains and gasl comes and goes and nausea at time and dirreah some time    but my surgeron said it my gallbladder was all messed up alot of inflamation  and mess in it but no stones you see that is probably why it didnt show those times   it took 3 hidiscans to show on the last   plus did not show on those other test    one test showed thickness in gallbadder some wher but they did not talk about it as concern  then the last one showed the story   i hope  you find out what is causing  your problems     have you had heart test and have they ruled out different thing    just thougt i would writeyou   i know what it is to wonder what is going on          God Bless You                                       mary elizabeth
Avatar universal
Thanks for the information.  Here's a followup.  Went the the ER on Friday - pain in back, abdomen, dizzy, weak - They did the hidascan which was normal.  I think some of my symptoms were caused by the antiobiotic which triggered a severe anxiety attack.  Anyway, I am still in pain today with pain in my back near the right shoulder blade.  Still the pain/pressure under my ribs.  I'm wondering if I have a pinched nerve in my upper back which is causing all of this, since this area gives me more pain every day.  I also notice much of the pain disappears after I sleep, or lay down and relax.  Anyway, I'm going to see my GP in two days.  We'll see what else he can do for me.
Avatar universal
i have had the same pain in my right side for 2 years now. i first went to a doctor and all my blood tests were negative. just recently i had more blood work, and a cat- scan, my doctor tells me i have a fatty liver from drinking to much, but i don't drink that much. my pain never goes away. hope you find something.
Avatar universal
Be patient, I had the same URQ pain for six months
straight, no relief!!  Went to many Drs, went for
many tests, only thing that showed were GB stones.
Even though my symptoms weren't classic for stones
(pain did not get worse after meals, actually it
didn't have any particular rythym to it at all!!
Dull pain, wearing tight clothing did make it worse
I do believe that stressing and worrying about it
which I did do, I thought for sure it was serious,
made it worse.  I have not had any pain for almost
2 months. Greg, hang in there, my doc now thinks
that I just happened to also have stones, she doesn't
believe it is what caused my symptoms and also believes
it is intestinal related.
Avatar universal
Randy, interesting you should mention the fatty liver - I also have a "slightly fatty liver" and the docs keep asking me if I drink a lot.  I don't - maybe two glasses of wine on Fridays.  I wonder if there's a connection.

Georgie, did you also have any acid reflux (heartburn)?  Now I feel this in my chest.  It has been there the last 4 or 5 days.
Avatar universal
Just got back from the Dr's office.  My hidascan showed very slow uptake in the gallbladder (>60 minutes before it showed up) but normal contraction (45%).  This with the recent heartburn and pain under my right shoulderblade makes him think the problem is the gallbladder.  I will go in for an upper GI tomorrow just to make sure that something else is not wrong and have scheduled a consult with a surgeon in a couple weeks.

Thanks for all your input, folks.  I want to make absolutely sure before they start cutting things out of me.
Avatar universal

      Go and get an upper GI done.  That should tell you alot!  I just had one done a week ago for pain right where you are explaining!  Before I had this done, they ran lots of other tests and still no answer.  It could be your gallbladder, but very sckeptical.  I had a gallbladder ultra sound- but that came back clear.  Anyway, the upper GI found: Esophagitis/Erythema, Gastritis/Congested Mucosa, and Duodenitis/Erythema.  I am taking Prevacid to try and lower my stomach acid level.  Anyway, that's my suggestion.  Good luck!
Avatar universal

Thanks for your comments.  I had an upper GI done on Friday and am waiting for the results.  Now I have some chest pain - kind of in my shoulder and upper right chest.  Also feels like there's always something in my throat that I can't get out no matter how much I try to clear it.  More on the right in my bronchial tubes.  Can esophagitis cause this?  I am also taking prevacid.  Much of the heartburn is gone, but I have this chest pain now.
Avatar universal
Good to find this forum. In Oct.99, I was sitting at work and felt as if someone was trying to pull my right lower ribs out. After a few days of this, I went to see my GP, and she ordered a ultrasound for possible Gallstones. Came back normal. She then decided to treat me for a muscle pull even though I informed her this was not the case (Gut feeling). Pardon the pun. For the next two months I went back weekly and to the point that she was making me feel like a hypocondriac. January 00, I asked her about H. Pylori and she (probably fed up at this time) prescribed Heldac Therapy. That prescription made me so ill that on Day 10 of 14 I could no longer take the stuff. I went back to see the GP and she finally ordered an upper GI and an oral cholecystiogram. Cholecystiogram showed normal gallbladder, Upper GI showed mild duodinitis. She then refered me to a GI internist who will be performing an endoscopy March 23rd. At least I finally got to a specialist. The HMO system certainly does not work with the patient. Hope the doc's enjoy their yearly bonus for managed health care.  My symptoms have been dull ache in URQ, mild to moderate fatigue, loose stools, dizzy, nausea (rare), and feeling like I have something caught in my throat at times. This really stinks because up to this point (35 yrs) I have had a normal life. This has really been a trying time as you all know what I mean. Well when I went to the GI Doc for my initial visit, it was reassuring for me to hear from him that he did not agree with my GP's approach to my problems. He also said that he never prescribes heldac because of the side effects. Hopefully I will soon see what is going on so that I can get back to a normal life. I wish you all luck in getting to the root of your problems. Has anyone experienced my symptoms and gotten a DX. It would be nice to hear from someone. Thanks.
Avatar universal
To Mary and others:  I can't believe so many people are suffering through exactly what I've been.  I've had pain, sometimes burning pain under my right rib area for the past year.  Had my gallbladder out last October; was imflammed and scarred, but no stones.  Still have the pain and pressure in my chest and right rib area that sometimes spreads around to my back.  No doctor seems to be able to pinpoint the problem.  I get very constipated and my abdomen swells, so on my own I've started taking a fiber drink at night.  It helps the pain under my rib, the pain moves to my lower abdominal area though.  I'm thinking it's a gas problem.  Or digestive problem.  I'm curious what you said about your doctor saying it sometimes takes 6 monthes to a year to heal.  I have NEVER heard that and I've been to MANY doctors and have had nearly every test imaginable.  I'd like to know exactly what your doctor said.  And is he/she a gastroenterologist.  Please write back; I'm at my wits end.  Thanks, Jane
Avatar universal
  Please let us know what the diagnosis was. I have been going through some of the same things you are, and was told by a gastro doctor he is at a loss, doesn't know what is wrong. When I had the scan, it also took about as long for the gall bladder to open up, had much pain and nausea when it did. Mine is emptying though at 85%. I have had all the other tests; ultrasound, upper GI of the stomach only (which showed irritated nerve endings), blood work and upper GI. Nothing else shows up. All the symptoms are there; pain in UPRQ,gets worse when I lay on my right side at night, pain up under ribcage, sometimes up behind the shoulder blades,orange colored stool, constipation and gas. I've been on Prevasid, Donnatal and nothing helps. I'm thinking of trying to get a referral to another gastro doctor. I'm tired of having all these test and then they find nothing. Any suggestions?
Avatar universal

Hang in there.  I don't have a firm diagnosis yet, but it sure seems like my gallbladder.  I had an upper GI last week.  It only showed that I have reflux.  I could have told them that without the barium swallow!  My doc suspects "chronic cholecystitis".  I have a consult with a surgeon next week (Thursday) and will let you all know what he says.  I have lots of questions for him.  I know what you mean about all the tests - I've had them all.  But at least I know I have nothing else wrong!  I actually had a MRI of my spine today to see if I have a pinched nerve.  I probably won't have the results until next week, but the technician said he saw a "bulge" which could be impinging on my nerves.  It was very small, so it may be nothing.    I want to make sure before I have anything cut out of me.  Did you have pain when your gallbladder contracted or when it started to show on the scan?  That might indicate that you have an inflamed gallbladder.  From what I can tell, it is possible to have gallbladder problems without necessarily gallstones.  But I'm going to ask the surgeon if it can be so inflamed and still contract normally.  

Oh, another thing I have seem pop up in the messages on this forum is problems with the "spinchter of odi" which may prevent the bile from flowing properly.  People who have the same pain after the gallbladder has been removed often have a problem with this.  It is diagnosed by a scope down the pipe.  There are complications with this procedure (~25% get pancreatitis).  You might want to ask your doc about this possibility.
Avatar universal
This all sounds familiar. I had this rt upper quadrant pain for 7 yrs and all gallbladder tests normal. Eventually had worse pain and had an open removal of galbladder( not recommended!), no stones but very immflammed. I still had pain and tests showed I had a narrowed bile duct.I had an ercp with many complications, it always happens to nurses!!I had further troubles with narrowing of the bile duct and had stents for 12 mnths. Even though blood tests ok the dr decided to operate and remove the scarred part of the bile duct and found chronic pancretitis. Unfortunatly I am getting pain again and wonder if the bile duct is narrowing again although blood tests ok. Also wonder if its pancreatitis again even though se amylase is ok. They say the amylase stops going up in chronic pancretitis. I also am getting indigestion which is what I got when the stent blocked up.The surgeon doesn't want to see me unless pain is excrutiating but the chronic pain is scary. I will probably see my gastroenterologist eventually but after so much illness its hard to start back on the dr trail again.
I wonder if alot of all your troubles are to do with the bile duct? They can do scans to see the passage of bile down the bile duct without having an ercp. Ercp doesn't hurt but the panreatitis afterwards can.
Avatar universal
Wow.  I wishe we could all get help.  Here's my story.  I am 35 and had my gall bladder removed in 1995 due to URQ pain with no clear diagnosis, other than a slow hida scan.  After that I was great.....until this past August.  One day at work I started having like a bad cramp at the bottom of my right rib cage.  It got worse as the day progressed and eventually I ended up in the ER with a low grade fever, high white count and UNGODLY pain.  I was admitted and had a CT and an upper GI.  All they found was "chronic constipation".  This shocked me, as I had been having regular bowel movements and had been on fiber therapy.  After 2 days of fluids only I was sent home.  Two weeks later - WHAM - happened again.  Back in the hospital for an endoscopy and colonoscopy.  Both were essentially normal - only mild inflammation in colon which I was told was "very mild IBS".  Whatever. Then they decided to take out my appendix since my white count was still high and no one could find the cause.  I went through the surgery for nothing in November.

Anyway since then I have been to my primary MD (bloodwork city), a mitral valve specialist (have mild MVP), 4 different GI docs (repeated upper GI and endoscopy - nothing), a urologist (did ultrasound and IVP - nothing) and an ob-gyn specialist (pelvic ultrasound showed nothing but small fibroid and small cysts on right ovary).  I lost 14 pounds, had headaches all the time, hurt in my entire right abdomen, lower right back and shoulder and developed dizziness and terrible nausea.  

The GI doc I am seeing now suggested an ERCP which I agreed to (you know - we get DESPERATE).  HE said my bile duct was narrow and had a lot of pressure in it.  He put in a stent and I got sicker.  I developed mild pancreatitis (cleared in a few days) and the right side pain continued.  He repeated the ERCP 2 weeks later and did a papillotomoy (made an incision in the bile duct to relax it and keep it open).  Initially I did feel some better.
The nausea eased and the dizzy spells stopped.  I ate well again and gained 5 pounds back and felt stronger.  Now, over the past couple of weeks the pain has started again!!!  I went to the ER in tears, begging them to help me.  Well...you know the drill.  They sent me home with pain pills and blamed it on IBS.  I went back to my GI doc and he gave me fiber samples!!!!  I was furious with him.  I have every fiber product known to man already! I stormed out.  He has apologized since, but just doesn't know what else to look for or do.

I have a lot of pressure pain under my lower right ribs.  Like one of them is broken and stabbing me.  I also hurt around the right side of my navel and sometimes in my lower right pelvic area.  It is a burning, stabbig pain.  Sometimes I feel like something is being twisted in there - like a rag.  I can't function when it is at its worst.  All I can do is lay down and cry.  I want to run to the ER for help - but I have learned that is a lost cause.  It is tender to the touch in all of those places and also the lower back/kidney area.  The urologist was SURE I had a kidney stone, but they did not see one on the IVP.  The ultrasound showed a small "flake" in my right kidney though and I pass globs of mucous in my urine (which again I have told everyone and they dismiss it since my urinalysis is ok).

I know this is long, but I wanted to share my experiences.  I went yesterday to the health food store and bought some aloe vera juice and flaxseed powder.  I read it helps with severe IBS and I'll try anything at this point. I just can't believe the IBS thing because of the fact that my pain is so point specific, isn't like bowel cramps and DOES NOT improve after bowel movements.  I think IBS is a cop out.  I am at my wits end and sometimes want to just scream.  My life has gone downhill and I WANT IT BACK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Feel free to e-mail me if you want.  And if any GOOD doctors read this and can think of something that hasn't been done/checked PLEASE email me also.  I want to ask my doc about Hemachromotosis, carcinoid (which my brother had) and other things...but they think I'm nuts already.  Being the patient is the pits sometimes.  

Avatar universal
I can totally relate! I just had my gall bladder removed 7 weeks ago. Prior to the surgery, I have been experiencing troubles with my stomache for 11-12 years. The most common symptoms are major nausea when I eat, vomitting (usually), pain and pressure feeling under my rib cage, (in the middle and to the right), a feeling as though something is pushing from the inside out, or another way to describe it was it felt like something was going to burst outwards inside of me. These symptoms have been worsening over the course of the years I've had these problems. Twice in 99 I had major attacks where the nausea, vomitting and mild pain would last for a few days. Finally in Dec. 99 I was hospitalized. My white blood cell count was 15,000 (normal is 5,000); my spleen was enlarged, my liver was enlarged and three liver enzyme levels were elavated; my gall bladder was enlarged and they found a small ulcer. (I am a 31 year old female, 5'10" and 130lbs). Apparently I did not fit the profile of a gall bladder patient due to my weight and size. As well, I wasn't showing any gall stones. (But then again, the pain was never really bad, it was the pressure and nausea that was worse.) Doctors recommended removing my gall bladder. I had the surgery done with the hopes that maybe this would be the end of my problems. I can't go out to restaurants because I just end up getting really sick anways, and have to leave early. Anyway, since having my gall bladder removed, the nausea and vomitting are still an issue with me, although I have to admit the pressure/pain feeling has gone away. I described to my family that now it doesn't feel like there's so much activity going on inside me. However, I still feel sick when I eat which has me feeling disappointed. Furthermore, I know have chronic problems with hearburn and reflux. I didn't have problems like that before the surgery, but now I do - and quite severely at times. I hope some of my information is helpful to you.
Avatar universal
Well, another trip to the ER tonight.  This time for burning in my chest and upper back pain.  EKG was normal as was a chest xray.  I thought for sure my lung was filled with cancer, but thankfully it's not.  My anxiety was crippling me.  The ER doc was very good.  He suggested that I have Fibromyalgia and my pains are symptoms of this ellusive disease.  It makes some sense because I did not have classic gallbladder symptoms like nausea.  I have other symptoms which can be attributed to fibromyalgia - fatigue, insomnia, etc.  This is thought to be a reumatoid type disease.  I'm going to look into this some more and will let you all know what I find out.
Avatar universal
Greg C. - Please email me at ***@****.  I would like to compare notes, etc.  I have the same problems.
Avatar universal
have they done any blood tests to test your liver enzymes?  they probably should do a CT scan of your liver to rule out any lesions.  Normal operating procedure.  Ask your doc.
Avatar universal
this is very long, but I wanted to be thorough.

Greg, I have had EXACTLY the same experience as you. It started in September of 99, when I had gotten the flu, strangely enough. I keep wondering if it's related somehow, but the doctors don't seem too interested in that info.

About a week into my flu (which I know wasn't food poisoning, because 2 other members of my family had it before I did--I didn't take anything for it except cold-eeze), I started feeling pressure behind my right ribs. kind of like trapped gas. it hurt, but not terribly. I felt the urge to burp, but that made it worse. My right tonsil felt infected and puss-covered. The doctor prescribed antibiotics, which I took faithfully, and I tested negative for strep. My chest pain became slowly worse, and ever since I have felt like there was something stuck in my throat on the right side. My bowel movements were loose (not diarrhea, though) and light colored, and it took several months for this to correct itself. my stomach still seems over-sensitive on occasion, but to nothing particular (I had an iron stomach before--nothing bothered it, except when I was having acid reflux problems--i'd stay away from soda or OJ and I was fine). I had also lost my appetite a bit; I never really felt hungy, though I had no problem keeping food down.

My doctor couldn't see anything wrong, so he sent me to an ENT, who looked at my throat with the scope and said it looked perfectly normal. But he prescribed me some zantac, thinking that maybe acid reflux was irritating my throat. I've had reflux problems in the past, and they have never felt or done anything like this. I also wasn't experiencing any heartburn or indigestion at the time. Anyway, I took the zantac every day, but the chest pain got worse. It moved from behind my right ribs to higher and more centralized in my chest, and it worried me, so I went to the ER.

It obviously wasn't my gallbladder, because that was removed 2 years ago, and I have never had any side effects or problems with it at all, no recovery time, nothing. And believe me, that pain was FAR DIFFERENT than this pain. the only similarity is it's kind of close to the same area, but not exactly, and it's a pressure kind of feeling too, but the gallbladder is much, much, much worse. my gall bladder was packed full of stones, and was legitimately removed, and I have been fine with a regular diet ever since. (I was also diagnosed with that while I was pregnant, and had to wait until after I had the baby and recovered before I could have surgery. I ate absolutely NO FAT for the next 2 1/2 months and did not have a single attack (had 3 attacks before they figured out it wasn't labor or trapped gas) until I had a BIG ONE right before my scheduled surgery. It was a hunderd times more painful than child birth. I guess it could be different for other people, but I think you'd know it if that was the problem).

Anyway, they did a chest xray: fine. EKG: fine. Blood work: perfect. liver is fine, liver enzymes are fine. They did an ultrasound: nothing (were looking for maybe a retained stone from the gallbladder, but everybody was doubtful on that one, since it had been almost 2 years). CT scan: fine. So I go to see the gatroenterrologist.

he gives me prilosec, which seems to help a little, but then it doesn't. the problems have been getting worse, throat still funny. So I have an upper endoscopy. says stomach linng pretty red, says it's GERD, keeps me on prilosec. Like I said before, I've had problems with reflux and acid production, so not surprising, but I still don't feel this is the answer. Biopsy: fine.

the pain has begun radiating into my back on rare occasions; then I started to feel it more and more there (though that pain is preferable to feeling it in the chest). Pain gets worse; he ups the prilosec doseage. still the same. I am taking any pain medication I can to numb it. of couse, that's not good for my stomach, but the pain is bad for me too, eh? he has me on smooth muscle relaxants. they don't do a thing.

about two months ago, I started feeling queasy, almost like I was pregnant, but I'm not. that went away, though, after a couple of weeks. so that might have been something else (maybe upping my prilosec?).

Doctor gave me some celebrex to take for the pain; he now thinks it's a muscle problem and not a stomach one. funny, but it hurts when I eat on occasion,and always hurts when I burp. (there was a time when it felt better to eat a little something). it is obviously related to that area somehow.

the pain has been radiating to my jaw for some time. I even thought maybe it was a tooth problem, my wisdom tooth hitting a nerve or something! I have thought the pain in my back was a muscle problem, though I really know otherwise. I worried that maybe I had broken a rib somehow and not noticed. I have been frightened out of my wits by thinking its cancer (went through a weepy period where I thought my daughter would grow up without me), even though all tests are normal. it's very easy to panic when you don't know what it is. it has been raditaing into my arm a little, too, so the doctor is supposed to send me for an echocardiogram this week, just to cover himself, as well as an upper GI (don't know what good that will do now). i don't think it is my heart; it's fine when i exercise, I'm never short of breath (I have asthma, but it hasn't bothered me in ages, and then was mild), there's no history of heart disease in my family, etc, etc. and besides, why would it hurt when I swallow?

My syptoms seem to get worse under stress and if I don't get enough sleep. my stomach seems full a lot easier now; Eating little meals seems to help (about 1/3 of a regular meal), otherwise i get indigestion.

I have, in the same time period, developed a skin condition which I believe to be Psoriasis. (antoher trip to the doctor next week to confirm that) i have had similar problems on my scalp on and off for years, but only to a very small extent (it's definitely not dry scalp of dandruff). it gets worse under stress, and clears up a little when I'm not stressed. I am worried about it now because about a month and a half ago I developed a patch of it on my face near my hairline. I mention this because it is said to be a rhumatoid problem or a sign of such problems. I find the fibromyalgia angle very enlightening: my family has a long history of rhumatoid problems; my mother has rhumatoid arthritis on both sides of her family, she herself has a rhumatoid disease which hasn't been pinned down yet to an exact one, although the doctors are certain it is a rhumatoid problem. Her sister has lupus, and my brother has suspected psoriasis as well. he also has joint problems (he is only 19), as does my mother, and in the last week or two, I have felt my shoulders and my hips hurting on both sides at the same time. the symmetry can be a sign of rhumatoid arthritis.

I have never smoked, drink maybe one drink a year, and don't touch caffeine (except for in the occasional chocolate). I am overweight (200 lb, 5'7") but that is mostly due to the weight I gained while on prozac last year (I have lost 20 lbs since being off it without changing diet or exercising more). I did change my diet for the GERD, but it didn't help the pain any.

I am only 26 years old. I keep thinking that I am going to feel this way for the rest of my life!!! ARGHHHH!!! At least if I knew what it was, maybe I could deal with it. My doctors don't take me seriously, and we've had to switch insurances in the last year and due to mixups with that have had trouble getting to the doctor when I need to. And when I do go, they scrath their heads or tell me I'll have to live with it. thank god I don't have an HMO. I am going for a second opinion next week (if it wasn't for the insurance problems I would have gone 3 months ago).

my thoat still bothers me, but I've gotten used to it now. trying to clear it just irriates it, so I've had to train myself not to do it.

I will look into the fibromyalgia, too, just to see. Let me know what you come up with!! if anyone has any info on this or has the same problem, feel free to email me at ***@****; that way if any of us find a solution we can spread the info around, in case we can't or don't get back to this site)
Avatar universal

Sounds very similar to what I am going through.

Just to let everyone know where I'm at now -

I have had:

Ultrasound - normal
Ab CT - essentially normal - slightly enlarged spleen, slightly fatty liver (I don't drink to excess - probaly because i'm overweight)
Upper GI - definitely reflux, but nothing else
Chest Xray - normal (I thought I had lung cancer)
EKG - normal
MRI of spine and neck - normal
HidaScan - almost normal - slow uptake (>60 min) and 46% contract

Symptoms -

6 weeks ago started having pain/pressure under right ribs.  After 1.5 weeks had the ultrasound.  Pain still there noticed some pain in my upper back - gets worse as the day goes on - i think maybe strain.  Had all the other tests over the ensuing month as the symptoms get worse and worse.  I have had some stomach upset (not nausea), gas (i am eating more fiber), Anxiety has been killing me.  This has been the worse.  I started on small doses of xanax a couple days ago and have been feeling much better, though the ab and back pain is still there - much of the other pain (stomach contractions, some of the chest pain) is alleviated.  Stress and Anxiety definitely make it worse for me.  The last two days i have been feeling this sharp pain in my back (upper right middle) which comes and goes every few minutes.  Feels like someone is sticking a knife in my back.  The pain goes all the way through to my chest.

I had a consult with the surgeon yesterday.  He's not convinced its my gallbladder.  I have a buisness trip next week, so will be out of town (and suffering).  Where do we go from here?  Well, the only test I haven't had is a barium enema.  We'll do that in two weeks when I get back.  I think I do have some IBS which is common with fibromyalgia by the way.  The surgeon may also repeat my hidascan because I'm not sure if I was under the influence of narcotic pain medication when it was done before.

I have learned alot about stress and anxiety.  It is irrational and terrible.  The xanax is helping me to sleep and get some rest.  This is the number one thing I'm trying to get a hold of right now.  THe pain I can handle, the fatigue and anxiety I can't.  So, everyone who is reading this - I would suggest you try to control your stress levels.  It is helping me some.

Hang in there . . .
Avatar universal
Please tell me what effect a narcotic pain medication has on the
hida scan. I took a tylenol #3 the night before I had the test done, probably 10-11 hours before the test from hell. It makes me wonder now if that affected my test, since the doctor felt that test was normal, (but hurt like heck, worse after the gall blader did open). I'm still having the same troubles, is not going away. Has anyone had all these test done, blood work, ultrasound, upper GI, endoscopic of the stomach only and then some other test was done to diagnosis gall bladder trouble. What is left for me to try? I see mention of an ECRP, what does that show that a hidascan wouldn't?
Avatar universal
yep, me too.
RUQ pain radiates to my back.
started end of august 99 with loss of appetite.
sharp abdominal pain thought to be appendicits.
not acute enough to remove.  told to wait it out, might go away.
pain has been daily.  sometimes an ache sometimes shooting, poker-like from back to front.
lost 20 lbs in one month.  5 back now.  29-year-old female.
137lb five six.  very active.  daily work out - weights.  hockey player, soccer, vollleyball, baseball.
ct scan abdomen - normal
ultrasound abdomen - normal
ultrasound pelvis - normal  (fluid in cervix)
barium swallow - normal but quick follow through
thyroid - bit hyper but normal
tested for porphyria - negative
24-hour urine sample - must have been normal
january to hospital in evening with pain (after hockey)
nurse didn't call doctor
sent home - nothing
after a hockey tournament february had a "seizure".  perhaps tia  (transient ischemic attack) mini-stroke.
stopped mid-sentence didn't know what i was talking about.  couldn't follow conversation.  "faded/zoned" in and out.  er dr. admitted me when i couldn't figure out the date or count backwards by 7.  lasted about 4 hours.  even into the next days i was in a stupour.
followed by an enormous headache the next day.  kept in for 3 days.  discharged taken off bcp (birth control pill) no driving.
ct scan cranium - normal
24 - hour holter monitor - ? no result yet, no news i suspect normal
echocardiogram - same as above
electroencephalogram - same as above
2 weeks later excruciating abdominal pain.  pain in abdomen when voiding.  pain on the step.  subsides if i am still.
to hospital.  admitted again for 3 days.
laparoscopy to rule out appendicitis - no appendicits
gyn consult looked at cervix, fallopian tubes, uterus.  noted kinked fallopian tube, fluid plus pain deduced pid.
although kink on left side - pain right.  
fluid culture - normal.
met with gyn.  admitted incorrect dx  (after $70 antibiotics of course) and a few extra holes in my tummy.
suspected kidney with further understanding of location of pain.

ivp - no stones

has another "episode" of  pain.  didn't go to the hospital.  i know i should have, but i was tired of hospitals and as i said, if i'm still it subsides.

doctors are done with me.
no more tests to do.
waiting for the next "episode"  and they want to see me in the situation (even though i've already been twice).  can't wait!

so now i wait.

other strange occurences include:

hyperhidrosis (nice way to say sweating)  controlled with drysol

night sweats

sleep apnea - i awake gasping for air.  my boyfriend has witnessed it.  i become rigid.  then gasp.  heart races.  sometimes this will happen and i won't really wake up.  he will tell me in the morning.  this happened during both hospitalizations.  in each case the other patient in the room rang for the nurse.

white finger - my middle finger of my left hand will turn completely waxy white.  feels dead.  lasts about 10 - 15 minutes then blood slowly reaches the tip.  noticed my middle toe of my left foot did it last night.

had a toothache that moved from top molar to bottom molar to opposite side and back to start all within 45 minutes.  the pain was nerve like.

i wear glasses for my left eye only.  lately seems to be worse.

my breasts are growing - beat that!

my hair is curling.  i have very straight fine baby-like hair.  the type that doesn't curl no matter what products i use.  now i am finding these random looping curls.

i have the hiccups on a  daily basis.  only last for two to five hiccups.  rarely do they last longer than that.  

any ideas - anyone?  what next?
Avatar universal

When I had my surgical consult, he asked me if I had taken any narcotics before the hidascan.  I couldn't remember.  He said narcotics, even up to 24 hours prior to the scan, can cause slow uptake.  If you had narcotics before your scan, you might want to see about repeating it narcotic free.


You might want to look up some information on firbromyalgia.  This is a chronic fatigue/pain syndrome which some believe is related to sleep disorders.  If you say you have apnea, that could be related to your symptoms.  I think there have been studies on sleep which show that if deep sleep is interupted for some period of time, symptoms of fibromyalgia show up (pain, aches, tender points, irritable bowel syndrome).  You may not have fibromyalgia, but the apnea could cause your symptoms.  I would suggest you seek out a doctor who specializes in sleep disorders.

Good luck.

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