I have a question (or a few!) and I'm hoping someone might be able to help me. For about 2 months I've been getting an intense, steady pain in my right upper abdomen, right below the rib cage. It usually lasts for a few hours at a time, then goes away, sometimes for a day, sometimes a couple weeks (at most). I ended up in the ER about a month ago because it started to feel an awful lot like pancreatitis, which I had a few years back. They did blood work, and all my levels were normal. The doctor did an ultrasound (on a machine that could be moved from room to room) and told me I had gallstones. Then he sent me up to the "official" ultrasound room, and afterward told me he was wrong, no gallstones. He told me that I had peptic ulcers and gave me medicine for acid reflux. I started to feel a bit better for a couple weeks, and then it started back up again. I went back to my regular doctor earlier this week, and she believes it is my gallbladder. She said that the stomach is on the left, and with my pain being on the right, that doesn't make sense. They did blood work and a new ultrasound, but I won't hear anything til next week. I haven't had nausea, appetite loss, or vomitting, but could it still be my gallbladder? Do you know if that is hereditary? Also (yes, one more question...), could this in any way be related to my past episode of pancreatitis?? We never figured out the cause (no, NOT alcohol), so I'm just wondering if all my "problems" can be linked together??? Thanks!!
Well, you do present a very puzzling picture. There is a condition related to Gallbladder disease, which usually presents following removal of the gallbladder. It is called spasm of the sphincter of oddi (the opening of the bile duct from the liver to the stomach. There have been those who believe that this condition can be present without gallbladder removal, but most physicians disagree with this. The only reason that i bring this up is because pancreatitis is a side effect of having this disorder. You could have a gallbladder problem in absence of stones. To diagnose this they would use a test called a hida-scan. This will determine how well the GB functions when it is working to eject bile into the system for digestion of fats.
Yes, It could be your gallbladder in spite of no nausea, vomiting, etc.
Gallbladder disease is hereditary, in that you are more likely to have problems if your mother did.
It could be related to pancreatitis if there was a blockage before which caused fluids to back up to the pancreas.
I hope you discover the cause of your symptoms soon.
Thank you!! Hopefully I will get the result of my ultrasound by tomorrow. If that shows nothing, my doctor wants to do a hepatobilliary scan (sp??)... I'm guessing that's similar to the hida-scan? And if that comes back negative she has a list of other tests to run. I'm hoping they figure it out sooner rather than later because I'm getting awfully sick of the pain. Thanks again!