Your gallbladder was removed. Now you experience stomach cramps and sudden “runs” to the bathroom with diarrhea. You are not alone. Just last year 700.000 Americans lost their gallbladders. This surgery has medical term; cholecystectomy. By medical statistic, 15-20% of persons without gallbladder eventually have some symptoms such as pain, gas, bloating, heartburn, nausea, constipation. Ten percent of people, which gallbladders were removed in the past, sooner or later have chronic diarrhea.
The reason for diarrhea after gallbladder removal is not clear. Some doctors believe that it results from an increase in bile, incoming into the large intestine. Doctors call the diarrhea after gallbladder removal as “Bile acids diarrhea” or “Bile acid malabsorption” They believe that bile acids act as a laxative.
Person with chronic diarrhea after gallbladder removal experiences diarrhea more than two weeks. The symptoms may vary, but most patients typically have four or more watery, yellowish stools throughout day, frequently, immediately after meals. A group of patients experience some cramps right before having a bowel movement. Because of urgency and possible bathroom’s accidents, people know the location of every public restroom and generally avoid long trips in unknown olace.
The first question is, is it preventable? No, even brilliant, experienced surgeons’ have patients with chronic diarrhea after gallbladder operations. This depends upon lacking the gallbladder. If we have the gallbladder, there is no diarrhea, absent of gallbladder causes bile salt diarrhea.
By going deeply in the medical literature, facts, and research, I will share my opinion about postcholecystectomy diarrhea. Let’s get the facts.
First, liver constantly produces bile inside the bile ducts. This liver’s bile moves down to the entrance of the duodenum, where the special muscle valve-sphincter of Oddi is.
Second, this valve works together with gallbladder. Most of the time sphincter of Oddi is closed. Therefore, pressure inside the bile duct increases, so liver bile is redirects into the gallbladder. Gallbladder expands to collect more bile. Here, bile is concentrated.
Third, if semi digested food from the stomach goes in the duodenum-first part of the small intestine, sphincter of Oddi opens and gallbladder contracts squeezing out the concentrated bile for digestion of fats. This process is under complex control of the nervous system and specific blood messengers-digestive hormones. When sphincter of Oddi opens, pancreas also releases digestive enzymes, so mixture of bile and pancreatic juice goes into the duodenum for digestion of 90% of fats, and 50% of proteins and carbohydrates.
Fourth, bile is balanced solution that consists of water, minerals, bicarbonate, cholesterol, lecithin, and bile acids.
Fifth, bile acids are extremely aggressive detergents. Their job is making fat droplets so tiny that pancreatic lipase can break them up. In the normal condition, bile acids are in the water-soluble form, promote split down the fats, and don’t irritate surrounding tissue. The main factor that keeps the bile salts in the water-soluble form is pH.
Acidic changes in the bile cause precipitation of the bile acids make them very aggressive chemicals. Can you imagine what can happen if someone swallows the laundry detergent? Acidic bile with precipitated bile acids corrodes, damages gallbladder, bile ducts, sphincter of Oddi, duodenum. I medically explain it in detail in my eBook: healthy pancreas, healthy you. Don’t forget that bile also is a vehicle for toxic substances such as alcohol, heavy metals, bile pigments, medications, toxins.
Acidic bile causes reflux, when aggressive, corroded mixture of bile acids and active pancreatic enzymes creates jerky contractions of the duodenum’s walls and moves in the wrong way. When this aggressive mix pushes up to the stomach or esophagus, it causes irritation, inflammation, ulcers, and eventually cancer of the stomach and esophagus.
Hundred of years, surgeons by eyes and now gastroenterologists by endoscope can see bile (bile acids) in the inflamed and ulcerated duodenum, stomach, and even esophagus. Going down precipitated, insoluble bile acids irritate small intestine and colon. In turn, it can cause abdominal pain, cramps, chronic diarrhea with the yellowish, urgent stools.
Nevertheless, why the removal of the gall bladder causes so many problems, you ask. That is why, because gallbladder suffers the most from acidity. Acidic changes in the concentrated gallbladder’s bile and precipitation of the bile acids there cause inflammation, spasms, development of the gallbladder stones. Gallbladder takes the first massive strike from the acidity; therefore, it is the first target for surgical knife.
The gallbladder removal doesn’t remove the reasons for irritation, inflammation by aggressive bile acids. Now, when gallbladder is gone, it is the turn of bile ducts, sphincter of Oddi, duodenum, stomach, colon, etc. It creates many symptoms and disorders.
Doctors call it postcholecystectomy syndrome. The chronic diarrhea after cholesystectomy is just one of the problems after gallbladder removal.
Absence of the gallbladder leads to other troubles that can worsen chronic diarrhea: indigestion of fats and dysbiosis (Candida-yeast overgrowth and Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth; SIBO).
Chronic diarrhea has many reasons to be, but body acidity is the primary factor and needs to be corrected first. It is not necessary to handle complicated test to prove body acidity. Measurements of saliva and urine during two weeks by litmus paper at home will show the true picture. If pH of saliva and urine often less than 6.6, there is too much acidity, therefore, body removes acidic radicals throughout body fluids such as saliva and urine. This can also presume acidic changes in the bile and pancreatic juice.
By common sense and basic physiology, the treatment of the postcholecystectomy syndrome has to begin with normalizing of the acid-base balance. Naturally, human being can neutralize the acidity by alkaline-formed diet, taking alkaline mineral supplements such as cellular magnesium-potassium and drinking healing mineral water. Drinking healing mineral water is almost unknown in the US, but has a long history of use in Europe.
Since surgeons started to perform cholecystectomy, more than 150 years ago, they could see chronic diarrhea in their patients. European doctors either advised to drink Karlovy Vary healing mineral water from thermal spring, or drinking water prepared from genuine Karlovy Vary thermal spring salt at home. Karlovy Vary is a well-known mineral spa in the Czech Republic.
Various medical papers support healing action of the Karlovy Vary healing mineral water in the digestive and metabolic diseases including the postcholecystectomy syndrome with pain and diarrhea. According to European doctors, Karlovy Vary healing mineral water supplies organism with alkaline minerals, bicarbonate and trace elements, makes bile liquid and alkaline, hence less aggressive.
Experiments and clinical discovery support the beneficial action this healing mineral water in case of abdominal pain, sphincter of Oddi dysfunction, bile reflux, dysbiosis, gas, bloating, constipation, and chronic diarrhea. Karlovy Vary healing mineral water can be use safely alone or as complementary, non-drug remedy with a healthful diet regime, nutritional supplementation, restoration of the friendly intestinal flora, colon hydrotherapy, etc.
The information contained here is presented for educational, informational purposes only. It is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. This information is not to be used to replace the services or instructions of a physician or qualified health care practitioner.