Hi I'm in the UK too. I'm awaiting my first appt. with a surgeon. So I can't advise on post-op, but I have found a couple of things that help me cope.
I have spotted that the attacks coincide with the start of my period. I don't want to have it cut out as it is so permanent an option. I am hoping that I can opt out, and ask whether if I could, instead, have another scan in a year's time to see if my gallstones have got worse. If they have, I'll reconsider.
I have found relief in drinking pure apple juice. It should be pure, not from concentrate. You can still get pure with a long use-by date. Another thing- add a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar to the glass of apple juice during an attack, it really is amazing that the pain will begin to subside in just 5 mins. I was very sceptical but it worked. I take some of this mixture in a little bottle with me if I go out when my period is due or on.
For a few days after the attack, keep sipping plain apple juice through the day. Add a little vinegar if the pain starts.
Avoid extremely low fat diets as fat prompts the gall bladder to release bile into the stomach, to emulsify it so it is digestible. The last thing you want is to slow down movement of the bile.
Another thing I have read that helps if you start to drink a little beetroot juice. There is something in it that thins the bile. I personally find it foul, so I dilute it, down it in one, and then take a glug of water!! But it helps. After a big drink of it I can actually feel my gall bladder rumbling! So half a glass of that each day.
AVOID the many 'flushes' talked about over the internet. The ones where you take lots of olive oil and lemon. There are photo's f what people pass after this, which are labelled as gallstones. But what they really are is soap stones, produced in the body with the mix of oil and acid. You would never pass these stones through the narrow tube that leads form your gallbladder. Another thing, these float, whereas real stones would sink. I realise that I might prompt others to disagree with me, and say they feel better afterwards, but this may be doing more harm than good in the long run, and they are NOT gallstones.
There are pages out there that explain this better; if in doubt, try to find them on google. There are fewer of these than the many that put forward the 'flush'.
I hope you find help and don't have to suffer this abysmal pain for too long.
Take care x
Apple juice definitely helps. Last year we made enough apple juice from our organic apples to last me three months, drinking 2 glasses a day. I was symptom-free for that entire time. When I ran out of our juice, the pain, dizziness and fatigue returned almost immediately. Since then, I've had to buy commercially prepared apple juice and it helps. Not as quickly or as totally as our homemade juice did, but it works to lessen any symptoms. I'm not sure if the difference in the quality of relief I get is because we used organic apples or the fact that our juice had a lot of the pulp that commercial apple juice doesn't have.
Since discovering this remedy, I start every day with a breakfast of oatmeal with cinnamon and yogurt mixed in (no sugar). And an 8 ounce glass of apple juice. I have great energy until about noon. If I remember to drink that second glass of apple juice in the afternoon, I'm good to go. If I don't remember.. not so good. I also add apple cider vinegar during an attack. And yep.. it really is amazing how much that helps.