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The last few weeks have been scary and stressful around here. It’s kind of a long story, so I’ll try to condense it as much as I possibly can.

I haven’t been feeling well on and off for at least the last couple of years. I had almost no appetite, had on and off bouts of horrible back pain among other issues. A few times the pain had gotten so bad I had sought help at the local emergency room. Needless to say the doctors blew me off, and even treated me like someone trolling for pain pills. They did no testing, gave me a dose of Tylenol and sent me home, repeatedly.

Last month I predictably came down with another bout of pain, this one even worse than before. Again I went to the ER to try and get help, and I expected the whole lather, rinse, repeat. Luckily for me, instead of the regular ER doctor on call I ended up with a very lovely young intern who actually not only examined me properly, she asked me questions. The first one being…Do you still have your gallbladder?

One ultrasound later, it was confirmed that I had gallstones, likely the cause of a lot of my health issues for the last few years…

A couple of days and one more ER trip later I was referred to a surgeon, and put on a 6 week waiting list for surgery to have my gallbladder removed, or so we thought….

I made it not even a week without another couple of ER trips before the surgeon on call decided to admit me and get it over with. The next day they informed me that it was a good thing they’ gotten to me when they did, or it probably wouldn’t have been long before I’d have suffered not only liver issues, but my gallbladder may have burst.

The moral of the story?

Trust your gut if you really feel that something is wrong. If your doctor won’t listen, find one who will, even if they are only running the tests to humor  you. It upsets me that I was in pain needlessly for I know at least well over a year.

Sure surgery is scary, but I woke up in less pain after than before, and am thankful that someone finally listened to me, and took the time to find what the cause of my pain and illness really was. In my case it took a different doctor and a different hospital. Don’t be afraid to make waves, and be the figurative squeaky wheel that needs greasing.

The life you save may be your own.