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Recovery Time Post Gallbladder Removal? (Page 8)

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December 21st, 2010
gallbladder surgery recovery time
Hi all

I'm 69 years old and had gallbladder (lapo) surgery on November 09. That's 6 weeks ago and I still suffer from intense pain. I have no appetite but force myself to eat pea soup or drink Ensure. Here it is almost Christmas and I'm disabled! I don't know what to do. I am hearing it takes from 3 weeks to 3 months to get well. My surgeon is very aloof and has no bedside manner and leaves me in the dark. Help!!
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replied December 26th, 2010
I'm having my Gallbladder removed tomorrow. My doctor told me I should be back to normal activity within a few days. After reading these posts I know not to expect that quick of a recovery. Thanks for posting!!
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replied December 29th, 2010
i had mine out on Christmas eve morning... i was in the hospital at 8, surgery at 10:30 and out at 4pm (waited an extra hour in recovery for my husband who was running late, they wanted to evict me at 2:30)... I moved about okay that evening, felt like i was having a mild GB attack, but nothing too unmanagable.. felt a bit off from the meds and aftereffects, but we drove up to my moms (hour and a half drive)...

didn't do the visiting with my aunt that i planned to that evening... but by the next day i was feeling okay... didn't feel up to going out for a jog, but i was able to open presents, make and eat breakfast (yay eggs with lots of BUTTER!), help tidy, and generally just enjoy the day... i got tired easy and did keep up with my pain killers to make it a lot more managable, but i was expecting a lot worse after reading these forums...

the net day (boxing day) i did go out and do a little shopping, although the crowds bothered me and we kept it light..

by the 3rd day i was lifting my baby (15m) up and carrying him around again here and there.. today, 4th day, i pretty much feel back to normal, although it does hurt if the baby catches me in the stomach...

i've had no issues eating anything (my attacks were horrid, but not constant, about every 2 weeks, had a referral to a proactive surgeon, who gave me first available date at my consult appt last wed (putting the surgery 2 days later)... i did have another medical procedure under local anest. the day before the GB surgery, so i imagine my body is given a little extra strain, but all and all i'm feeling better than i thought i would... and i'm SOOOO glad to have the pesky GB out!

for those who are researching about their upcoming surgery (like i did) and are getting worried (like i did), i can say I totally feel for those who aren't recovering well, but i guess if your recovery is going fine and quick like you've been told, you're probably not looking on the inet for recovery times and posting to boards like this!... just thought i'd pop a note saying it really isn't that bad for many (or most), otherwise the doctors would likey adjust their/your expectations...

remember in the first couple days when you feel like crap, get up and move around as much as you can (within reason)... i've bounced back from 2 c-sections within days with this plan of attack and it worked well for the gall bladder too! don't over do it tho, and if you are vomiting bad after the surgery, get something for it quick... my aunt tore her internal incisions in the hospital vomitting and ended up with a hernia/strangulated lower intestine which was a huge deal to fix and caused her extreme pain... so do move about, don't be a martyr!

i wish a quick and as pain free recovery as possible to all to all!!!
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replied January 7th, 2011
I had my gall bladder surfery 9 days ago and just got the surgeon bill today when i found out that they removed a wedge of liver, as they labled it. i have no idea why or what the purpose was.No one told me this could be a possibilty> The did not relay this information to my fiance after the surgery was comnplete. I have to call this morning and see what the deal was and if this is a normal thing that they do. Im basically freaking out because i had no clue this was even done until i saw the price they are charging me. Its an extra $1600 added to the bill. has anyone else had a "wedge" of liver removed during gall bladder surgery? i appreciate anyones imput.
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replied January 10th, 2011
I am on day 7 since my lapo gallbladder removal. I have to say that like some of you, I was starting to think that something was wrong because I am still hurting. However, now that I have read from a lot of you that this isn't unusual, I feel relieved. I have been in and out of the hospital several times for attacks until my gallbladder ended up infected and they had no choice but to remove it almost immediately and I'm so glad to have it out. I just can't wait until I'm back to normal again. Unfortunately, I also have a kidney stone so I'm sure that will be next..lol.
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replied January 20th, 2011
I had my gallbladder removed laproscopically 3 weeks and 1 day ago. The procedure went very well and I've had no diet issues whatsover. For the first couple of days you need to take it easy and stay in bed as much as possible. During those initials days for me, the worse thing was the difficultly with getting out of bed, putting on socks and sleeping. I normally sleep on my side or stomach so sleeping on my back just felt odd. I was able to walk after a few days but still not doing the 10km walks I usually do. Don't push it though....if you get the "pulling" feeling take it easy!!


As for WORK (unless you have a really easy job, financially forced to, or you only stand) I'd suggest 3 WEEKS - that's REALISTIC. I went back after 2 weeks but I was uncomfortable and I had to stand rather than sit. In the end I took 3 weeks off until that pulling feeling eased.

Also, I don't think its been mentioned but you have to wear loose fitting clothes. Jeans, belts and socks are not fun POST OP. It was three weeks before the tight fitting clothes and belts came out.

DON'T OVER-DO IT.

I started bleeding in week 2 because I pushed myself.....give yourself 3. The sub area takes longer to heal than the surface. Besides, your employer and friends will not thank you for being uncomfortable or in pain. After a month you should feel BACK TO NORMAL. Don't listen to this "I was working the day after" rubbish - its all a load of bullocks. I'm a fit and healthy 40 year old male and I had to listen to my body in the end. What my head wanted in terms of my recovery just wasn't realistic.
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replied January 24th, 2011
Surgery
Has anyone had the surgery the old fashion way. I am one of those type of people that I do not like the new techniques, they scare me alot.
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replied January 24th, 2011
Surgery
Has anyone had the surgery the old fashion way. I am one of those type of people that I do not like the new techniques, they scare me alot. I have been having this pain for almost 6 years, and just now they have found that my gallbladder is only putting out about 25% of what it should be. They found this through a hide a scan. Here in the past 2 weeks I can barely eat without going into an attack and now I am seeing a surgeon tomarrow to schedule. But I am seriously thinking of having them it do it the old way.
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replied February 1st, 2011
The pain I experienced before my gallbladder surgery was monumental...I tried everything from holistic herbal compounds that I found in my trips for work abroad to Montreal to the trip to the holistic health practitioners in NYC.I changed my diet....which was an Atkins type of regimen.Since I don't eat red meat my diet was not filled with that much fat but I would be lying if I didn't mention my love for turkey sausage with and egg white omelet...shrimp cocktails and my love for cheese which sometimes caused a minor tinge...I watched what I ate and lost over 30 pounds.Well guess what the stones multiplied because I lost weight...they got worse.
To make a long story short.There was no other option.The pain started to become permanent.I started to get use to bowling over regularly.Ridiculous!I finally had the gallbladder surgery I just had 4 days ago.The surgeon said I had many stones and the surgery was much more difficult because of this.I am sore...not much an appetite..crackers,popsicle,spinach soup,and cottage cheese with fresh assorted berries.Also I am juicing fresh organic apples with a banana.I just started taking "metamucil" along with lemon in unfiltered water.So far so good.The usual soreness continues and Iam hoping for my first bowel movement soon.Tired but hanging In there...not sure if I will be returning to work after a week though.2 weeks is ideal....we will see...
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replied February 1st, 2011
The pain I experienced before my gb surgery was monumental...I tried everything from holistic herbal compounds that I found in my trips for work abroad to Montreal to the trip to the holistic  health practitioners in NYC.I changed my diet....which was an catkins type of regimen.Since I don't eat red meat my diet was not filled with that much fat but I would be lying if I didn't mention my love for turkey sausage with and egg white omelet...shrimp cocktails and my love for cheese which sometimes caused a minor tinge...I watched what I ate and lost over 30 pounds.Well guess what the stones multiplied because I lost weight...it got worse.
To make a long story short.There was no other option.The pain started to become permanent.I started to get use to bowling over regularly.Ridiculous!
I finally had the gb surgery 4 days ago.The surgeon said I had many stones and the surgery was much more difficult because of this.I am sore...not much of an appetite..crackers,popsicle,spinach soup,and cottage cheese with fresh asst berries.Also I am having juiced fresh organic apples with a banana.I just started taking "metamucil" along with lemon in unfiltered water.I read on this very posting site that someone uses" metamucil "to bind fats and aid in digestion.
So far so good.The usual soreness continues and I am hoping for my first bowel movement soon.Tired but hanging in there...
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replied February 27th, 2011
listen to your body--while maybe there are some superhuman beings that can return to normal in a day or two, many of us can't.

i had lap surgery almost 3 weeks ago along with 2 ercps, 1 mrcp, one sphincterotomy and a 6 day stint in the hospital--along with 3 drs who said i'd be back to normal with the exception of lifting in a day or so.

they lied.

i am *so grateful* all of you who've btdt--i thought there was something really, really wrong with me. my case was a bit complicated i guess and i did have full blown jaundice and turned completely yellow with not only stones in the GB, but an obstruction in the bile duct that ultimately became impacted and needed multiple procedures.

the presurgery pain was unbearably excruciating and was way worse than anything post op, so if you need surgery, it was well worth it--honestly, for me it was so bad they could have said they would remove my gb with pliers through my nose without anestesia and i'd have agreed to it.

but. (or, what they DONT tell you)

while i am one of the lucky ones to escape dumping syndrome (i did come home on clear liquids and slowly increased my diet and still havent dared to eat a high fat meal--use common sense on your diet--explosive diarrhea can take you by surprise the first week or two), the host of issues i still have is crazy.

1. pulling (especially at belly button)
2. gas...crazy, full of methane, can clear a room gas.
3. exhaustion at the slightest exertion (i lol'd at the poster who said they needed a 7 hr nap after a short drive to the store--that is not an underestimation)
4. random pain in random parts of my midsection that comes and goes inexplicably.
5. inability to sit for lengths of time/sleep/lay/get comfortable at night--still waking every few hours or so due to discomfort, down from every hour tops the first two weeks.
6. minor complaint: incisions at waistband are rubbed raw and irritated--horrible placement.

i'm a pretty tough chick, and have had 2 c-sections that needed less recovery time...

listen to your body, plan a good solid week of downtime (maybe more if you can) and know that not everyone recovers in a day!
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replied March 6th, 2011
I had mine out on March 3rd. I was in the hospital at 10:30am and in the car on the way home at 4pm. The surgery itself was a non-issue. It was quick and easy, and this is my surgery so I was terrified. I was a little unique as I did not have any attacks. My gallbladder was chronically inflamed and full of stones, but never really gave me more trouble than moderate discomfort. I opted for the surgery so that I could just get on with my life.
The surgery was done laparoscopically and I have 4 small puncture wounds, one in my belly button. The stitches were sealed with glue. They itch some, but I barely notice them mostly.
I've been slowly introducing more foods, but all of them low fat. The first night I stuck with clear liquids and then tried applesauce and skim milk the next morning with no problems. I'm gassy and constipated, but I think that's expected with the Hydrocodone I'm on for pain. I'm slowly weaning off of the pain meds. I'd really like to have a natural bowel movement soon! Mostly I'm just uncomfortable. I can sleep on my back or my side, but twisting and bending is no fun. The 2nd day was by far the worse. The CO2 they use to fill your belly will cause you some grief. I moved around and walked around like my surgeon said to and by yesterday it was mostly gone.
I had a really fantastic surgeon and no complications. I would say to anyone who is scarred and facing this surgery that it is worth it and not nearly as bad as your worse fear. Let's just hope the healing continues this way for me! Good luck!!
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replied March 7th, 2011
Take it easy
I had laparoscopic gallbladder surgery 12 days ago, and although I wasn't one of those, go back to work the next day, kind of people, it hasn't been that bad. I had my surgery at 2pm and went home by 7pm the same day. I ate only saltines and chicken noodle soup (without the chicken) the first day post-op. But although sore I was able to get in and out of the recliner by myself (very carefully because it did hurt). I tried to walk a lot because I knew I might have pain from the CO2 and wanted to get as much out while the anethesia was still in my system. I only took 1 vicodin during the day and 2 at night to make sure I slept well and was off all pain meds within 4 days. I did have trouble going the bathroom which was probably from the pain meds and took miralax on day three and then ended up having diarrhea for a few days after that. about a week after surgery i noticed I was having more gas and bloating than ever. I drank a lot of water, and took papaya extract and by the next day it helped a lot. I would really reccommend anyone having problems with bloating to try this. I have noticed I don't tolerate some vegetables very well ad have been taking beano before anything I feel might cause a problem. I was really worried about having major problems after the surgery because the internet research I did before showed it was more common to have post cholycystectomy syndrome when you don't have gallstones. My Hida scan showed an ejection fraction of 19%. All in all I think things are going well. everyone is different, so follow your own body, but I would reccommend papaya extract for people that are having digestive problems and see if it helps.
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replied March 7th, 2011
BTW My belly button incision is still tender. and I was still having pangs of pain occassionally even a week after surgery.
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replied March 20th, 2011
Thanks for all the comments. Very helpful. I had my Gallbladder out on Tuesday, came home same day, am still weak on Sunday. Not taking as long to get out of bed, but not very hungry. Taking low dose pain killer, some discomfort near lung area and belly button. Some nausea but better, some gas. I too wish Dr. had said expect discomfort for a few more days, I got the impression I'd be feeling great in two days. Definitely not so=) Blessings all,
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replied March 24th, 2011
Had mine out March 17. I was having attacks every 5 to 7 days even eating fat free. Had postponed it from Feb. 14 due to a very bad cold. I was told I would be fine in about 3-4 days. It has been 7 days, went for post op. I am very tired and out of breath most of the time. I walk several times a day. One stitch is trying to work it's way out, but should be ok. Had a stabbing pain under my right rib when I leaned over and I still feel sore and my back in hurting same place it did when I would have an attack. I am relieved to see others didn't bounce back in a couple of days. I have been so down in the dumps thinking I will never feel good again. I am 62 years old and not in great shape but I have always been able to do most anything I needed to do. Picking up a gallon of milk hurts. The attacks were much, much worse. One thing more, my second day I sat outside for about 20 minutes. My face puffed up like a tomato. Red, hot and swollen. My Dr. said might be the dye he used to make sure my ducts were empty or the antibiotic in my IV. It cleared up in a day, but sure was scary. Over all, I would do it again in a minute. I thought I could dissolve or pass the stones with the apple cider vinegar and olive oil. Did pass some, the pain was horrible though. Hope this helps someone.
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replied March 30th, 2011
Had gall bladder removed 3/25/2011 sils
I had my gallbladder removed Friday march 25th at 7:30 am was out of surgery by 8:30 am and home by 11:30 am.
I had the single port lap done called the sils only incision is in my belly button.
In recovery they offered me sprite and crackers i needed to urinate to be able to go home.
The nurse gave me a vicodin prior to leaving I got up to walk around and thats all she wrote I threw up all the soda I drank, now I must admit I drank too small cans so my body really wasn't ready for that. But once I got that out of my system I was fine. I got home I was groggy And kinda out of it. I was taking hydrocodone every four hours for pain and a stool softener.
Day two starting feeling pulling in my belly button and pain in my back and shoulder blades.
I was sleeping on and off. Eating mashed potatoes, peaches, oatmeal and crackers.
And only drinking water. On the third day I had a bowel movement this wasn't painful and I have had one everyday since.
I was on pain. Meds every 4 hours first 3 days then every six hours 4th day and now I am taking extra strength Tylenol every 6 hours.
Bad thing with me is day two I started my period so bad pains in back and on top of that I have 2 eight inch metal rods In my back due to me breaking my back. My l-1 thru l-4 this surgery was done in 1987 so I. Always had back. Pain from. This injury and I think this surgery just added to my normal pains . I had alot of right side pain and back pain I used heating pad when needed just not on incision area.
One thing I have noticed is that sometimes its hard to catch my breath no breathing issues at all.
I did need help. First couple of days to get in and out of bed but pretty much. Did it on my own after that.
I was so scared to go through this surgery, anesthesia and all but docs were great and made it a walk in the park the after surgery part was on me.now that's it's done I am happy I did it.
If anyone has any questions just ask!
I had multiple gallstones thats why they removed mine
I was upset stomach all the time bloated after eating and when I ate pain was in chest and shoulder blades. I always had heartburn And gas
No dumping here normal urination and I had a bowel movement my third day.
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replied April 8th, 2011
Scheduling surgery?
How quickly did they schedule your surgery? I am going Monday to talk to the surgeon and schedule surgery and I am wondering how likely I am to get surgery the same week, as I am miserable and have been for two weeks. And did they give you anything to relax you? I freak out before surgeries.
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replied April 12th, 2011
I had my gallbladder out 4 weeks ago, went back to work after a week (im lucky enough to sit behind a desk all day.) I seemed to recover quite quickly, but now spend an hour on the loo after eating, get tugging pains around the cut under my ribs and have lost 20lb since the op as well tiring very easily. Could this just be a delayed reaction to the op? I was not overweight before the op and am not soft when it comes to pain.
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replied April 14th, 2011
i had gall bladder surgery today makes 2 weeks ago. the pain started easing up after a week. i slid out of bed the first three days. i have a little nausuous but feeling good. my stool is normal. thank god for that. i had one gall stone but it was the size of a golf ball and inflamed. only way i knew it was there was because
of a ultra sound i had during a physical. so my doctor
was surprised i did not have the gall stone attack or anything.

but it does get better. i thought the pain would never eased up but it did. just wanted to share this with you.
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replied April 15th, 2011
I had my gallbladder out on April 6 and now we are 10 days later and I would say I am 95% back to normal. I had been diagnosed with gallstone pancreatitis when I was on a trip to Las Vegas and for the first time in my many attacks had to go to the hospital. I was there for 2 days and insisted on leaving to go home where I would have the surgery.

The surgery was a first for me so it was fairly scary going into it but now being on the other side I am very glad I did it and that it is now over. I will never have to deal with those horrible 10-12 hour attacks again.

I only took the prescription pain meds for a day and a half and then went to ibuprofen. I tried stopping about day 3 and the pain came back with a vengeance so I took it for a total of about 6 days.

The first 3 nights I couldn't sleep in my bed, it was much more comfortable to sit reclining than flat and I couldn't roll very easily.

I had read that moving around helped the healing process and I do believe this is true. I had some pretty bad pain in my shoulders from the gas and I tried to walk just a little bit to help this and I think it did. Each day I would try to walk a little more. One day to the edge of the driveway, next day one short block, then before I knew it I was walking around the block and today I did my normal walk which takes about 15 minutes.

I still get a little more tired at night than usual but that will go in time.

I'd say to listen to your body and do what it tells you as far as exertion.

I want to thank everyone for posting here because just reading these posts made my recovery better.
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replied April 27th, 2011
I had my GB removed on 4-21-11 (today is 4-27-11) and I STILL hurt and feel swollen. My GB was functioning @ 11% & I didn't have stones. It was removed laparoscopically and I had 5 incisions (I've had a laparotomy before.) I stayed overnight because I had a hard time with the anesthesia & I ended up being allergic to one of the IV pain medicines they gave me (Buprenex). The day I was released, the nurse made me WALK out of the hospital even though I requested to be taken in a wheelchair. She told me "No, the quicker you can get on your feet, the better you'll feel." LIES!!! I cried the whole way to my mom's car-- I had surgery less than 24 hours ago! the nurse told me to do as much walking around as possible, so I went to the pharmacy & grocery store directly after leaving. After 2 days of running errands & trying to resume normal activities, I started running a fever and my incisions started draining. I called my surgeon and he couldn't believe what all the nurse told me! Turns out several of my internal stitches had "popped" from me being too rough with my own body. The nurse also neglected to give me my follow-up care instructions. Turns out my surgeon even had specific instructions on how I was to lay in bed and whatno, but I didn't get it. It's now day 7 for me and I STILL get tired really easily and it hurts to lay on my side or bend too much. Everyone's body is different, you'll heal as you need to. So basically--
If you're not physically comfortable doing something, you probably shouldn't be doing it. If there's any doubt in your mind, ask your surgeon or your family physician.
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