Viewer Comments: Gallstones - Symptoms

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Gallstones - Symptoms

For gallstones, what were the symptoms and signs you experienced?

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Comment from: amc723, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: February 02

My freshman year of college, I started to experience minor pains in my upper abdomen, under my ribs. I usually would just take tums, and try to fall asleep (it would happen at night). One night when I was home for Christmas break (January), the pain was bad enough to go to the emergency room (ER). The pain lasted until around 5 am, they gave me a 'GI (gastrointestinal) cocktail' and sent me on my way. I was prescribed omeprazole (Prilosec) to take once a day. I would get the same pain every once and a while that would radiate to my back. These pains started to get more severe and more frequent around late November, then started to happen pretty much every day. Finally, in January, (last month) I was referred to a GI doctor after going to the ER on Christmas day for horrible abdominal pain. They did an ultrasound and I was finally diagnosed with gallstones! My surgery is this month and hopefully it goes well. But seriously, if you have pain in your upper abdomen, it radiates to your shoulder blades, and you cannot eat anything fatty or unhealthy, do not just assume it is heartburn or indigestion! Get an ultrasound. I know how much gallstones can take a toll on someone; not being able to go eat pizza with your friends, losing sleep every night because of the pain, it is horrible!

Comment from: Cosmogirl, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: February 02

I had been going to the emergency room (ER) for about 3 years with very sharp pains, throwing up and almost feeling like I was dying. Every time the ER would give me pain medications and send me on my way. I had one not even a week ago and now after getting the dye put into my stomach I found out I have gallstones and also my gallbladder does not even work anymore. Luckily I get surgery next week.

Comment from: kl1234, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: June 01

I am getting my gall bladder ultrasound tomorrow. I have been having episodes of throwing up bile once a month for 10 months.

Comment from: Sally, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: March 03

I have had about 6 really bad episodes of waking up in the middle of the night with terrible heartburn, so bad that I end up throwing up. The pain is all through my chest and back area and unbearable at times. I too have started using a heating pad on my back and that seems to help some. I have an appointment in several days and will make sure my doctor tests for gallstones.

Comment from: lhelmick, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: December 01

When I was pregnant with my first child, I started having severe pain in my upper right abdomen. I mentioned in to my doctor and she said that it was probably indigestion. I had an "attack" about every two weeks during my pregnancy. The pain would wake me in the middle of the night. I would feel as if I needed to go to the bathroom or vomit. The attacks usually lasted anywhere between 30 minutes to two hours and usually involved me vomiting to get any pain relief. After I had my daughter, I didn't have any problems for about two months. Then all of a sudden, they came back, at least one a week. I soon found out that I was pregnant again. So again I chalked it up to severe indigestion and started watching my diet. Over time, I realized and was able to eliminate certain foods that caused me problems: milk, hot dogs (processed foods), soda, chocolate, peanut butter, and many others. I mentioned it to my doctor again and asked her why those foods would be causing indigestion. She said that I may have gallbladder issues. After I had my son, again, all the pain went away for about six weeks. Then it all came back again. I went to the doctor and had an ultrasound performed, and they confirmed that I have gallstones. I was referred to a surgeon.

Published: August 27

The first episode began gradually with a burning pain and a lot of pressure just beneath my ribs on the right side, straight down from my breast. The pain and pressure got worse over the course of an hour until I could hardly move or take a deep breath. When I tried to manipulate the area (thinking it must be trapped gas) I could feel a hardening and enlarging of (what I now know was) my gallbladder. After a couple of hours, the pain slowly subsided. The second episode began the same way, same spot, but this time it radiated to my back. I tried to burp, thinking it would relieve the horrible pain, and I immediately and violently vomited until my throat bled. Two days later, an ultrasound showed two small gallstones.

Published: August 27

Looking backwards from surgery date to symptoms, I had jaundice, uncontrollable itching, nausea, chest pain (that felt like someone took a belt and cinched it under my breasts as tight as they could), abdominal pain from under my breasts down to my lower abdomen, back pain from under my shoulder blades to my spine and then other times I would feel perfectly normal. Of all the symptoms, the only one that seemed to be consistent was the itching.

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Patient Comments & Reviews

The eMedicineHealth doctors ask about Gallstones:

Gallstones - Causes

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