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should I have the gall bladder surgery or not?

  : : : : : : I am a 34 yr old female with no outstanding medical history, just normal childhood stuff.  I was recently diagnosed with gall stones and atypical symptoms and it was suggested that I have the gallbladder removed.  In my research I have found that people with atypical symptoms are quite likely to have symptoms return after surgery.  
  : : : : : : I am trying to get the doctors to investigate other causes but none of them seem to want to do that until after I have the gall bladder removed.  
  : : : : : : Since the chances are good that my symptoms will not be alleviated by the surgery, is there a reason I should have it anyway?  What possible complications could arise if I decide not to have the surgery?  
  : : : : : : Any comments you have would be greatly appreciated.  I would also like to hear from others who had atypical symptoms and whether or not you had the cholocystectomy as well as any post operative symptoms and complications.  
  : : : : : : Thank you.  
  : : : : : ____________
  : : : : : Dear Amei,
  : : : : : A detailed history is crucial to making the right diagnosis.  Without interviewing you, we can not provide any insights regarding your best course of action.
  : : : : : This information si presented for educational purposes.  We can be of assistance if you wish to be seen in the Division of gastroenterology at Henry ford Health system.  call our Physician Referral Line at (800) 653-6568 and request an appoinment with dr. Fogel, one of our experts in the treatment of gall bladder problems.
  : : : : : HFHSM.D.-rf
  : : : : : *keywords: gall stones
  : : : : : 0.2
  : : : : Sorry, I had posted a detailed history under 'is this really a gall bladder problem' posted 9-8.  I didn't know you would need detailed information since my question is more general - assuming the diagnosis of gall bladder disease is 100% correct and cholocystectomy has been suggested, if I decide to postpone the surgery, what possible complications could arise?  Also, if chances are good that the symptoms will return after surgery (as my research on atypical symptoms suggests), are there any reasons I should go ahead and have the surgery at this time?
  : : : : Thanks for the information, you have been very helpful.  I feel like I have hit a brick wall locally because the doctors I've seen are reluctant to look for alternative causes for my symptoms and what few additional tests they have requested (to rule out ulcer) have been denied by my HMO.  
  : : : _________
  : : : dear Amei,
  : : : In theoretical terms, if you have classical symptoms, then you should have a cholecystectomy and it would be realistic to expect complete resolution of symptoms.  For people with atypical symptoms, removing the gall bladder would not help if the symptoms were due to esophageal spasm or irritable bowel disease.  The more causes excluded, the greater the chance that the problem is due to a gall baldder problem and therefore, the greater the chance that symptoms will improve after gall bladder surgery.
  : : : This information is presented for educational purposes only.  always consult your personal physician for specific medical questions.
  : : : HFHSM.D.-rf
  : : : *keywords: gall bladder
  : : : 0.2
  : : Thanks for the info, you have been very helpful.  It seems to me like you are saying that I should push for more tests to rule out other possible causes before I consent to the surgery.  My current Dr is doing the best he can, the HMO is fighting him every step of the way though.  
  : : I do have a few more questions.  If you could answer them I would greatly appreciate it.  
  : : 1)  If I decide to postpone the surgery indefinitely, what possible complications could I have?  I'm sure the pain won't go away but what else could happen?  Is it life threatening?  
  : : 2)   Could any of my symptoms be related to a food allergy?  For several years I have had a lot of mucous in my throat after dinner (not usually any other meal or snack).  I have the constant urge to cough and/or clear my throat which lasts for sometimes a couple of hours.  I eat Halls or mints which helps a little but it doesn't go away completely.  It has been getting gradually worse over the last several years.  (Several Dr's have said they believe it is a food allergy but none of them wants to investigate and find out)   Also, in the last few weeks, I have gotten asthma type symptoms after dinner, too.  Slight difficulty breathing, wheezing and dry cough.  I was diagnosed with mild asthma after a severe case of bronchitis but have never needed medication for it.  It doesn't happen every night, the last time it happened I had sushi (salmon, cucumber, rice, seaweed and lots of wasabi).  
  : : Any thoughts on that one?
  : : Thanks again, your straightforward answers are appreciated.  
  : _________
  : Dear Amei,
  : 1) Patients with symptomatic gall stones are at risk to develop acute cholecystitis, an inflammation of the gall bladder wall, that is a severe pain.  Additionally, it is possible for stones to enter the common bile duct causing acute pancreatitis and possibly cholangitis ( infection of the bile).  
  : 2) Food allergies are difficult to diagnose.  I do not thinik taht the symptoms which you describe represent an allergy to a specific food, although you may not be able to tolerate all foods.
  : This information is presented for educational purposes only.  Always consult your personal physician for specific medical questions.
  : HFHSM.D.-rf
  : *keywoerds: gall stones
  : 0.2
  Thanks, it makes it a little easier to make the decision knowing what the options are.  
  One last question and I promise to stop pestering you unless I have a major change of symptoms.  You have mentioned several things I should try to have ruled out before I have the surgery (esophagal and gastroduodenal disease and a few others I have found through my research), what kind of specialist would be best to perform these tests?  Should I be seeing more than one kind of specialist?  My current doctor is a gastroenterologist.  
Dear Amei,
A gastroenterologist is the correct physician for your problem

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