Q. Lately, I’ve noticed that after eating certain foods I have a fairly severe pain below my right rib cage and I’m nauseated. Also, I’m always tired and don’t seem to have my usual energy. What’s going on?
A. Those symptoms can be associated with a sick gallbladder. The gallbladder stores bile (a digestive juice for fat made in the liver) and it squeezes when you eat a meal that contains fat so that bile can be added to your intestine. If the gallbladder is blocked and the bile can’t get out, you feel pain in your upper abdomen. That blockage can be a stone or just a dysfunctional gallbladder. Over time, the sick gallbladder saps your strength and energy. If you are having these symptoms, you will need to see your doctor. If the gallbladder is the problem, it may need to be removed. Because the pain can be confused with pain associated with a heart attack, it’s important to have this checked out by your doctor.
David Redd, M.D., FACS
Chattanooga Hernia Center
2205 McCallie Avenue
Chattanooga, TN 37404