Phantom Pain…

I’ve been having this occasional weird pain in the upper left quadrant of my abdomen, right underneath my g-tube scar. It has been infrequent and annoying, but nothing to really worry about. Until yesterday.

I ate (most of) a Kashi frozen meal for lunch, and the pain started. I thought to myself, “I guess these meals don’t agree with me” and carried on. But the pain got worse and even two hours after lunch, I was still waiting for it to subside. As the pain grew more intense, I finally decided to head home early.

At home, I laid on the couch and put pressure on my belly, which did help for a while. I took some left over medicine from after surgery, which did not even TOUCH the pain. Later, when Lee got home, we went to bed and I slept for about an hour until I woke up out of a dead sleep to SHARP pains in the same area. When I stood up, I immediately started to pass out. I called for Lee who helped me up off the floor, and we headed to the ER.

Of course, anyone with abdominal pain is a big mystery to begin with. But abdominal pain after gastric bypass is like a freak show of guesses and hypotheses and bizarre tests to the ER doctors who really have very little experience with the specifics of RNY. I had to explain to my doctor that nothing was actually removed from my body.

And, since I’m a female, everybody and their brother wants to do a gynecological exam any time pain of any sort is mentioned. So that was fun.

A few chest x-rays, blood tests, and a CT scan later, I found out… nothing. There’s no explanation for my pain. They did discover, however, that my left kidney is shrinking (although my kidney function is fine) and I’m supposed to follow up with my primary doctor about it.

So no news as to the mysterious pain. It went away right before the CT scan, so I just have to wait until whatever it is progresses to the point where it can be diagnosed.

Lee wondered if I regretted surgery when I was in the throes of pain, and I have to say it’s still a resounding NOPE! Whatever is wrong, we’ll figure it out eventually and fix it.

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4 Responses

  1. Ummm… sounds like what I experienced with my gallbladder. Might I suggest that you demand that they do a HIDA scan? That is the only way they can truly see if it is your gallbladder. Please don’t take them at their word if they tell you it’s a kidney stone!!

  2. Will be praying for you Meg…

  3. Gallbladder? Appendix? If it returns, you get right back to the ER, ok? They misdiagnosed my brother’s appendicitis a few years ago and he could have died. Stay on top of it, Meggers!

  4. Hi.

    This sounds like something I had a year ago. It hurt like hell. I ended up in the ER.

    I couldn’t drink that barium stuff for a CAT scan, [WLS] so they gave me something else. Results? ZIP. My bowels were clear.

    They did every alphabet soup test imaginable for 3 days.
    Results? Dunno??? Emotional???

    I saw a shrink. He said I really was suffering pain after a gastric attack saw me dig my nails in his neck when I tried to grab the call string for the nurse.
    Kidney stones? That would be in the back. You would be vomiting everything including water.

    I saw an internist, endocrinologist, psychiatrist, gastroenterologist, WLS doctor, chiropractor, and faith healer. No one knows what caused my abdominal pain.

    I saw my GP. He said it sounded like a bowel obstruction. My CAT scan showed a clear bowel. No obstruction.

    My GP advised that when your bowel *KINKS* up or twists, it hurts like hell. Then the bowel relaxes and untwists. It can happen anytime and reoccur with excruciating pain.

    How to prevent it? Keep hydrated. Always drink plenty of fluids to keep your bowels functioning. Constipation can also cause a kinked bowel, he said, which is another side effect of dehydration.

    I’m guilty on both counts. I don’t always drink enough water and don’t have a regular bowel movement. Since I increased my daily liquids, there’s been no reoccurance.

    Anyway, hope you feel better.

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