This entire ordeal began with my emergency Gall Bladder removal 14 months ago at UC Davis Medical Center in Sacramento California. When I awoke from surgery I learned I had a small internal bleed and that was why a JP drain (Jackson Pratt) was inside my side by a long tube. I also learned that a small piece of Gall Bladder was not removed but no one went into details why. I asked if it would cause me any future problems and I was told it would not. I was sent home days later with the JP drain still attached to my body. At home I was required to measure the blood that had accumulated in the drain bulb, measure it, record it in a log for the doctor and discard the blood into the toilet. I had to do this 3 times a day for 8 days. I could only sponge bathe and stayed in the hospital gowns even at home. I had to pin the JP drain to the gown otherwise it would pull out of my body.
All year long I continued to have pain in the same area right beneath my chest, under the right breast, behind the chest wall, an opening and closing feeling and as it opened and closed a feeling of a fire place poker being shoved in and out.
Everyone thought I was crazy. It couldn’t be my Gall Bladder, I didn’t have one!
Late February of this year I began to have severe pain where the Gall Bladder use to be, I could hardly breathe, I deal with CRPS pain and average a 7 daily, but this pain shot strait to a 10. I thought I was dying! My husband took me to the ER. They didn’t believe it to have anything to do with my upper belly, Gall Bladder either, Xrays showed 2 clips from that Gall Bladder surgery, my Spinal Cord Stimulator (SCS) and it was dismissed as constipation. I’m sure I was constipated too with the meds I take, specifically Suboxone at that time which I took for CRPS pain management the last 3 years, but that’s not what the pain was from. I was sent home with the suggestion to follow up with my primary asap. I did!
He ordered an ultrasound right away. The ultrasound showed I still had stones which was believed to have been inside me since the original Gall Bladder surgery. It also showed inflammation and re growth of tissue as the posterior wall of the Gall Bladder is adhered to my liver.
I was sent to a surgeon. I told him how everyone thought I was nuts when I mentioned the pain being so similar to the original Gall Bladder pain, he said “Well you might be nuts, but it IS your Gall Bladder!” He had a great sense of humor and finally some validation.
In order for him to fix me he will have to cut part of my liver away.
He first opted for an MRI, but since I have an SCS (Spinal Cord Stimulator) I am unable to have one.
Instead he ordered a ERCP.
On Tuesday May 21, 2013 I am having 2 procedures done. The ERCP (Endoscopic Retrograde Cholangiopancreatography). I will be under full anesthesia while the camera is inserted down my throat and for the removal of the stones from my bile duct. If there are no stones found, but they were there, he will still cut the bile duct clean it out and leave a stent or tube behind.
If I end up with Pancreatitis as a result of the procedure I will be admitted to Mercy General Hospital in Sacramento for a few days, if not, I will get to come home the same day if no complications. I also learned that one of the 2 procedures may be rescheduled due to time. I hope not.
This has been going on since late February and the pain while it comes and goes can be so overwhelming even a second trip to the ER 3 weeks ago with an injection of both Toradol and Morphine then Morphine again an hour later didn’t help for 2 hours after I got home.
This needs to be done for me to go on for the actual surgery on my liver. While the stones cause pain, so does the that piece inflamed on my liver. It’s growing new tissue. It feels like back labor. My right side beneath my ribs throb in a way hard to describe.
I feel like that surgery in weeks or months down the line.
One thing that does bother me a bit is that in my xrays at UC Davis ER in February the clips were seen. In the ultrasound less than a month later they weren’t.
I hope I didn’t spring a clip or two. Kinda funny the way I said it, but not really.
This story will have a continuation…