I had my gall bladder removed 4 years ago and within months started to have IBS symptoms which were treated based on those symptoms. However, about 6 months ago (around Feb-08) I started to experience a constant painful pressure on my right side just beneath my ribs. I went to the dr. over and over until she finally sent me to a GI specialist who also treated me for IBS…HOWEVER…less than one month ago I started to experience severe back pain which we all assumed was from a severe kidney infection.
Then when bilirubin started spilling into my urine (often makes your urine look tea colored if heavily saturated and when it’s not remarkable you always…no matter how hydrated you are have a decidedly yellow hue to your urine) and I’d shown signs of jaundice I was immediately hospitalized. I had 2 CT scans, one Doppler Ultrasound and was released 3 days later after, without any medical intervention other than an HUGE amount of IV fluids and powerful antibiotics for the kidney infection, my LFT (Liver Function Test) numbers started to fall. They did find a kidney stone but it was still intact and they knew that it wasn’t causing the liver issue. They wondered if it was it hepatitis…no. Or is it an autoimmune disorder of the liver…no.
So, I had an MRCP (Magnetic Resonance Cholangiopancreatography) basically an MRI of the digestive tract a week ago and lo and behold…they found what they believe is the culprit…a cyst on my pancreas. I am scheduled to have an EUS (Endoscopic Ultrasound) with a fine needle aspiration/biopsy in 5 days.
The odds are more than likely that it is something that can treated but I’m so glad to know that they are SO close to a real answer because I was tired of them looking at me like I was nuts (but when the liver started acting screwy the doctors got a bit more on the ‘I don’t think it’s in her head’ train!).
For women, pseudocysts (which do not fit the definition of a true cyst…sac-like growth that is not normal within the tissue where it is located and is often fluid filled) are the most common cause and not actual cysts. Though the ’cause’ of these cysts are typically not really known, they often cause chronic pancreatitis, liver function disorders, and more often than not, people with them are more likely to develop Type I diabetes.
Sometimes they (cysts and pseudocysts) can be aspirated but they may need to be surgically removed. And for women the odds of it being cancerous are MUCH lower than for men (especially those in their 50’s and 60’s…Patrick Swayze immediately comes to mind).
I don’t know if I’ve helped put your mind at ease any or have caused you to be more worried but when I read your posting as well as the postings of many others, I felt as though our symptoms were so similar that I simply had to let you know what I know (or almost know) because when you don’t feel good it effects everything and everyone you encounter. It’s an odd little society we all belong to and the more information there is…the better. At least that’s my motto. ”