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Old 03-12-2012, 02:44 PM   #1
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Surgery During Pregnancy

Hi mamas! I've posted before regarding my gallstones diagnosed early in this pregnancy. Since that time, I've been on a very low fat diet which has helped reduce the number of attacks overall. However, I'm still having them occasionally and having epigastric discomfort frequently.

I've seen a surgeon, as well as my OB about my gallbladder. Both agree that if I'm not symptomatic, it would be best to wait until after pregnancy to remove it. However, they informed me that if I'm still having pain and/or attacks around 14 weeks, it should be removed. They explained that the surgery becomes more complicated and risky in the third trimester and that gallbladder problems often exacerbate later in pregnancy.

I'm approaching the second trimester when they've recommended the surgery be done. I've read many studies on general anesthesia and laparoscopic surgery during pregnancy and the results appear to be quite reassuring. At this point though, I'd love to hear some anecdotal accounts of those who have been there, done that with surgery during pregnancy.

Gallbladder surgery stories would be great, but I'd love to hear from anyone that's had any surgery under general anesthesia during pregnancy! Thanks do much .

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Old 03-12-2012, 02:48 PM   #2
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I would say if you are getting attacks then you need to have it taken out.

My sister had a gall stone attack, passed out from pain, and was killed in a car accident. She was complaining of pain to her ob and he said it was just her bc pill (he never looked into her health history to see that her blood condition causes gall stones)

Please take care of yourself.

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Old 03-12-2012, 02:56 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by stevensmom
I would say if you are getting attacks then you need to have it taken out.

My sister had a gall stone attack, passed out from pain, and was killed in a car accident. She was complaining of pain to her ob and he said it was just her bc pill (he never looked into her health history to see that her blood condition causes gall stones)

Please take care of yourself.

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Oh gosh, I'm so sorry to hear that . How awful. The pain is unbelievable. I shudder to think of how bad it will be once baby is big enough to press on my gallbladder. I've read a number of stories of moms trying to wait it out until after pregnancy and ending up with infections, going into premature labor, and even a stillbirth . It seems like there is danger both ways...I'm trying to weigh the risk vs. benefit the best I can.
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Old 03-12-2012, 03:16 PM   #4
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Re: Surgery During Pregnancy

Hi there!

I know just how nerve wracking surgery during pregnancy can be. At 23 weeks I was diagnosed with hydrophrenosis, which is basically when the pressure from the uterus blocks the ureter(s) from draining urine from the kidney. My case was severe enough that i needed a stent placed and replaced 3 times during my pregnancy.

My advice is to ask your doctor and the anesthesiologist what your options are. With my first surgery, I was able to be heavily sedated rather than put out completely. The second time I needed heavier sedation so I opted for a spinal (as it is much safer for baby). I also had general anesthetic in my final surgery once my baby was born.

Good luck! I'm sure things will turn out fine, just ask what your options are.
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Old 03-12-2012, 05:23 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Urchin
Hi there!

I know just how nerve wracking surgery during pregnancy can be. At 23 weeks I was diagnosed with hydrophrenosis, which is basically when the pressure from the uterus blocks the ureter(s) from draining urine from the kidney. My case was severe enough that i needed a stent placed and replaced 3 times during my pregnancy.

My advice is to ask your doctor and the anesthesiologist what your options are. With my first surgery, I was able to be heavily sedated rather than put out completely. The second time I needed heavier sedation so I opted for a spinal (as it is much safer for baby). I also had general anesthetic in my final surgery once my baby was born.

Good luck! I'm sure things will turn out fine, just ask what your options are.
Thank you! I will definitely check with the surgeon at my next consultation.

I had a similar situation as you in my last pregnancy! I had a kidney stone at 25 weeks that could not pass. We opted for spinal anesthesia for the stone retrieval surgery and urethral stent placement. It went very well!

Unfortunately, I don't think they will able to do the spinal for a laparoscopic cholecystectomy because of how high the anesthesia is needed and because of lung interference . It is definitely something I'm going to check into though!
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Old 03-12-2012, 05:45 PM   #6
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Re: Surgery During Pregnancy

I had my right ovary and fallopian tube removed @ 8.5 wks pg with DD1 and although there was some rough recovery we both made it through just fine.
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Old 03-12-2012, 06:39 PM   #7
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Re: Surgery During Pregnancy

I've never experienced it from the mama side, but my mom was pregnant with me when she had her galbladder removed and we were both fine, and that was 26 years ago, so I'm sure things have improved since then too. Sorry that you're having to go through this!
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Old 03-13-2012, 08:57 AM   #8
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Re: Surgery During Pregnancy

i had to have an endometrial growth on my right ovary removed, along with what was left of the ovary, at 16 weeks pregnant. it was originally misdiagnosed as a cyst, but it was bigger than my 16 week pregnant uterus by the time it was taken out! it was a laproscopic procedure and i had to be put under completely. it was pretty scary, i was really worried about the baby and tried to avoid the surgery, but really, the drs and everyone agreed that the baby was more in danger from that thing staying in there than from the procedure needed to get it out. sometimes, there are no "good" choices you know? it wasn't fun, and i woke up with bad stomach cramps that in my half-awake state i was sure were contractions and i begged the recovery nurse to check and make sure it wasn't the baby coming (poor girl, i could tell the surgery people weren't used to dealing with pregnant ladies, and were almost as scared they were going to screw it up as i was). but, it all turned out fine. or at least, it appears to have. i'm 29 weeks pregnant now. so, the baby isn't here yet. but, we've since had our anatomy ultrasound, and she looks none the worse for it, and has a good steady heartbeat, kicks regularly, is growing well, all the things you would expect in an otherwise perfectly normal and healthy pregnancy. my drs and midwife were all very pleased. and, the surgeon and high-risk ob both cleared me to still have a homebirth! they said that while the growth was there, it made my pregnancy higher risk, but now that it's gone, and i'm healing so well, there's nothing that should make the actual birth more complicated.

good luck! it's really scary to have surgery while you're pregnant, but you and the baby will probably be just fine!
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Old 03-15-2012, 06:33 AM   #9
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I didn't have surgery but DH's mom had a uterine growth while pregnant and had it removed around the 4-month mark. They thought she'd lost him until she went into labor 5 months later and now that "miracle baby" is 28 I wish you well with whatever you decide!
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Old 03-15-2012, 07:09 AM   #10
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Thanks so much for all of the input and well wishes, ladies! I have been researching it constantly, and I feel like it is making my anxiety about it worse . I have a couple weeks left to decide, so hopefully I will be able to find some peace and confidence in whichever direction I choose. Thanks again!

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