Located below the liver, the gallbladder is a small organ on the upper right side of the abdomen that stores bile secreted by the liver. When fat is consumed, the gallbladder contracts to send bile into the intestines to aid digestion. Gallbladder removal or cholecystectomy is most often undertaken because a patient has been having issues with gallstones and/or gallstone-related complications, including: gallstones in the gallbladder or bile duct, gallbladder inflammation and pancreas inflammation.
To prepare for gallbladder surgery, you take a prescription solution to flush the stool out of your colon. You must avoid eating and drinking prior to surgery, according to your physician’s directions.
There are two ways to perform a cholecystectomy. The most common method is laparoscopic surgery, but there are cases when open surgery becomes necessary. To perform the laparoscopy, several small incisions are made in the patient’s abdomen. A small tube with a tiny video camera is inserted through one of the incisions. Other tools are used through different incisions, while the surgeon can visualize the area through a video screen in the operating room.
If there are complications or scar tissue, an open surgery may be performed. This involves a six inch incision on your right abdomen below the ribcage. Both procedures take one to two hours. After the laparoscopy, many patients can go home the same day, though some people need to stay in the hospital for a night. A full recovery takes approximately a week. In an open cholecystectomy, most patients spend two to three days in the hospital and take four to six weeks to recover completely.
Conditions that may relate to gallbladder surgery:
- Liver disease
- Sickle-cell anemia
At Center for Advanced Surgical Oncology, we treat the entire spectrum of cancers and cancer related disorders. Our experienced team of caring health professionals offers advanced surgical treatment options. Dealing with cancer can be difficult, but at Center for Advanced Surgical Oncology, we are here for you every step of the way.