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I’m not exactly sure when the stabbing pain started but I went to my first pediatric gastroenterologist when I was about 13. The doctor told me that because I had parents who weren’t together and they lived in different states that it was stressing me out so the pains must have been stress related. So I lived my life with horrible stomach pain every so often within a few hours after eating. The only thing that would make me feel better was laying on a heating pad in my bedroom until it passed or I fell asleep, whichever came first. As time passed, the pain got worse, I became more irritable and angry, and I was just so miserable living in pain. I tried every diet trying to cut out dairy, gluten, meat, and other things I thought that I might be allergic to with no change in the pain.
When I turned 26 and moved onto my company’s insurance plan, I decided to take matters into my own hands so I booked a doctors appointment with the team at One Medical and met with a nurse who told me within 5 minutes of meeting me and explaining my symptoms that I probably had gallstones. I scheduled an ultrasound to find out that my gallbladder was FILLED with gallstones and that the pain would get worse and it would (soon) rupture if I didn’t have it removed. I was also told during my ultrasound that my liver had lesions and that I would need an MRI to check that out, which is another story I’ll have to tell y’all about.
One Medical helped me find a nutritionist (Rochelle Sirota, MS, RD) and a gastroenterologist (Julie A. Font, MD). The nutritionist helped guide me through a low-fat diet and the gastroenterologist (who had gone through gallbladder removal surgery herself) recommended surgeons who would do the removal surgery for me. I immediately reached out to a surgeon (Rebecca Brewer Kowalski) that was covered under my insurance and scheduled time for a consultation. After the consultation, we scheduled the surgery and I did all of my pre-op bloodwork, EKG, and urine samples all at One Medical.
So I had a laparoscopic cholecystectomy using robotics (cool) and they took out the very sick gallbladder and I haven’t had any stabbing pain since! I’m still currently on a low fat diet and I do my best to avoid high fat foods but sometimes French fries are my weakness..