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What are the complications post pancreas and gallbladder surgery ?

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My 72 year old mother had her pancreas, gallbladder, spleen, part of stomach and part of small intestines removed due to a neuroendocrine tumor in her pancreas 13 days ago. She had some complications ie low blood pressure, high heart rate and kidneys were not working right after surgery. She also lost an extra liter of blood due to a vein attached to the pancreas that the surgeon did not think was there. She received 3 units of blood during surgery and 2 more on day two. No blood issues since. About 4 days ago all the above issues are resolving. Only meds are pain med and adovan(became anxious yesterday) She was very healthy prior to this discovery. On no meds mayby took 4 aspirin a year. She is currently being tube fed and getting "nutrients" and fluids through her IV. I am not sure about what nutrients she is getting. It appears to me she needs mass doses of vitamins as she is very weak and has not walked in 13 days and was pretty weak prior to surgery. She can not heal if she does not have what her body needs and IV and tube feeding do not seem to be working well.

My question is she is still draining from her drainage tubes (on both sides) more than they think she should. One day about 5 or 6 days ago she had 6 liters come out of drainage tubes in 12 hours.

Do you know what might be causing this? We were told this should have stopped by now and they are not sure why she is still draining alot. She is also a little yellow. Her eyes and skin. Do you know what might be causing this? Thank You
Posted Sat, 21 Apr 2012 in Liver and Gall Bladder
Answered by Dr. Rakhi Tayal 6 hours later

Thanks for writing to us.

The drainage tubes are inserted after a major abdominal surgery to drain the reactionary fluid which starts collecting in the abdominal cavity. If there is no blood staining of the fluid draining then it is not very alarming.
Since the surgery was done to remove a tumor, it is possible that some lymph nodes might be affected causing secretion of excessive fluid.

Complete examination of the draining fluid (Biochemical and microbiological tests) will give clues about the cause of such a fluid accumulation.

Yellowish discoloration of her body might be due to weakness or jaundice which again can be differentiated only after examination and liver function tests.

I hope this information has been both informative and helpful for you. If there are additional concerns, I am available for your followups.

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