Updated: Apr 13
The gallbladder is a small organ that is located near the liver. It helps store and release bile that is produced in the Liver, into the bloodstream so that it can help to digest ingested fat. Whenever there is an imbalance in the cholesterol and bile salts, or the bile gets infected or if the gall bladder cannot pump efficiently then it produces stones. These stones may irritate the gall bladder causing inflammation called cholecystitis. It may also block the duct causing a Gall bladder abscess (Empyema) or Jaundice if it blocks the main duct. Stones may also block the pancreatic duct causing Acute pancreatitis.
The most common symptom for those with gallstones is abdominal bloating, pain in the upper abdomen and chest area, which can be felt on the right side near the liver. Some other symptoms include nausea, vomiting, fever, chills, and jaundice (yellowing of the skin).
Gallbladders that are diseased or do not function normally will often be removed to prevent further damage or illness. While gallbladder surgery is considered a safe and effective option for many people, it is not necessarily suitable for everyone. Only your doctor can determine if this is the right procedure for you and what type of surgery is best. Here are some factors to consider when getting gallbladder surgery in Singapore:
What is Gallbladder Surgery?
Gallbladder surgery is a procedure that involves removing the gallbladder for various reasons. One of the most common reasons for gallbladder surgery is when gallstones have formed in the organ and either cause pain or may result in a life-threatening infection as mentioned above.
How is Gallbladder Surgery performed?
Laparoscopic Cholecystectomy is a keyhole procedure, which removes the gallbladder through smaller incisions by using a surgical instrument called a laparoscope. This can be done nowadays using a robot. Minimally invasive surgery such as laparoscopic and robotic surgery results in less pain, less risk of wound infection, lesser hospital stays and early return to normal activity.
Can We Remove Only Gall Stones Without Removing The Gall Bladder?
It is not recommended to remove only gallstones without removing the gallbladder as there will be a recurrence of the stones in almost 100% of the cases. Kidney stones can be removed using laser or shock therapy. However, this is not recommended for gallstones. The best treatment for Gallstones is to remove the stones along with the gallbladder. You will be able to lead a perfectly normal life without the gallbladder. In the presence of gallstones, it is more harmful to keep the gallbladder as life-threatening complications can occur in the future.
Does Size Of Stone Matter Regarding Surgery?
Size of stones or number of stones is usually not a consideration with regards to surgery. A large stone may cause local symptoms such as inflammation whereas smaller stones may migrate and cause blockage of the main bile duct.
Factors to Consider before getting Gallbladder Surgery
Surgery is not for everyone, so before you decide to proceed with gallbladder surgery, you should make sure that your condition falls under the criteria for this procedure. Your doctor will be able to tell you what type of surgery will help you based on your diagnosis. For example, if you have a condition that results in your gallstones blocking your bile ducts or pancreatic ducts, it may be necessary to perform an endoscopy prior to the surgery. This is called ERCP.
What Is The Recovery After Gall Bladder Surgery?
The surgery is usually quite straight forward, and the recovery is quick. We recommend a low-fat diet for about 3-6months after surgery. This is to prevent indigestion and give time for the bile duct to recover and take over the function of the gall bladder.