Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Saying Goodbye to My Gallbladder

Well, today I am going to be having my first surgery EVER.  I will admit that I am a teensy little bit nervous, maybe even a tiny bit scared, but at the same time I have never been more ready to have this swollen, stone-filled gallbladder out!  

To catch some of you up to speed, this is something that I have been struggling with since Hendrix was born.  Looking back now, I think I had my first gallstone attack when I was 5 or 6 months preggo with the 'lil guy.  It started out as just a very uncomfortable pain coming from my upper right abdomen that ended up wrapping around to my back.  As it got stronger and stronger, there were moments when it felt like my lungs were being punctured.  Then as quickly as it started, it was over.  10 minutes, tops.  Being a first time pregnant gal, I attributed it to the general discomfort of a growing tummy and didn't think much more of it than that.  In the next couple months I felt lots of pressure and discomfort coming from that general area, but I thought that Hendrix's foot was lodged under my ribcage and that there was nothing I could do about it.

After Hendrix was born I spent just about every ounce of my strength and energy trying to strengthen and plump that little boy up  (This was a very successful venture by the way, take a look!)  so I didn't spend much time worrying about my own health.

It wasn't long after we were home though that I began having "episodes" again.  At first they were occasional (like once a week or so) then they became regular (like every other day) and now I experience general soreness even in between the actual attacks.  The attacks have gotten stronger and longer and are so unpredictable. They often happen in the middle of the night, at at times have been so sever that they make me vomit.  I think I waited longer than I should have to talk to the doctor about it (I just brought up the subject at my 6 week post-baby check), because it is quite the run around to get the approval to have your gallbladder removed.  I went from my OB doctor, to my family doctor, to radiology for an ultrasound, to the surgeon to discuss my options, then back to my family doctor for a pre-op physical.  Phew!  

My ultrasound found 7 stones, some of them being quite large.  The doctor says that for this many stones to be present, I most likely have had gallbladder disease for quite a while.  The hormonal changes that occurred during my pregnancy and after because I am breastfeeding simply exacerbated the problem.  He thought I should have it removed as soon as possible, and at this point I absolutely agree!

It is a laparascopic outpatient procedure that only leaves me with 4 small incisions.  Apparently it is super routine and not all that invasive.  I guess my biggest concern is going to be recovering while caring for my little guy at the same time.  My mom and sister are coming with me to the hospital today to help with Hendrix, and then because of the holiday weekend, hubs will be around to help.  We are planning to still go home for Thanksgiving but are going to just see how I feel before we make any decisions.  Since I am not supposed to be lifting anything (including my sweet baby boy), I think being around family to have plenty of help will probably be the best way for me to get the rest I need to heal up.

Well I guess I better get going so I can get ready and head over to the hospital.  If you would like to send any positive thoughts or prayers my direction I would gladly appreciate them!  I am looking forward to some serious snuggles with this cutie pie after it is all over with! (Don't worry, I will have someone bring him to me)

1 comment:

  1. Oh Jen! Def will be thinking about you and good luck!!


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