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Please help. I was just told I have a large gallstone, thickened gallbladder wall and a gallbladder polyp so I need to have my gallbladder removed. I’m concerned about surgery because I have severe stage 3 COPD (not end stage yet but close) and have hyper sensitive vocal cords (from nerve damage) that cause coughing fits and clamping down of vocal cords when I try to breathe between coughing causing a suffocation feeling. I’m terrified of anesthesia and CO2 to inflate my belly because of my lung condition and also scared they will further damage my vocal cords when placing the tube down my throat. I’m not sure if they will do an open surgery or laparoscopic surgery. Is it possible to have an epidural if open surgery is performed? There would be no need for the throat tube or CO2 if an epidural is done during open surgery. I’m meeting with Gastro Dr and surgeon next week. I want to have all my questions ready when I meet them. Please, please help and thank you.

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replied April 25th, 2019
Lungs and Respiratory Disorders Answer A64952
Welcome to this forum.
You are rightly concerned. Really a laparoscopic surgery under general anaesthesia is challenging to a person having restrictive lung disease and with vocal cord palsy. Again epidural or spinal anaesthesia is rarely applied in such surgeries. However, neither the general anaesthesia is impossible to apply without complication in your case nor the epidural is impossible.Keep faith on your doctor and he will decide what will be the best option for you.
Hope I can address your query. Please visit your doctor if there is any further confusion as without a clinical examination it is not possible to opine through an online medical forum.

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