The gallbladder removal operation is one of the most performed surgeries in the united states. More and more people of ages 40 and above are experiencing gallbladder problems and need surgery to remove the organ and the stones that it causes. The gallbladder is a small sac, shaped like a pear, found beneath the liver and which the body uses to store the bile that the liver produces. Bile is needed when the organism digests fat substances. When the gallbladder ages, small stones called gallstones keep forming inside it. These gallstones are the cause of some problems and they can lead to complications if they obstruct the bile duct or if they slip and go down into the duodenum. Therefore, when the gallstones are becoming a problem, or when the gallbladder becomes ill and irritates, it needs be removed from the body.
The gallbladder removal procedures are using advanced medical tehniques, and because more and more people need this surgery every year, doctors are continuously researching new methods to make the gallbladder removal operation easier. This surgery is called a cholecystectomy, or a laparoscopic cholecystectomy if the doctor uses an instrument called a laparoscope while operating.
When the day of the surgery comes some nurses will visit you to make sure that everything is OK and all the paperwork was completed. Afterwards you will be taken into the operating room where anesthesia is administered. The type of anesthesia chosen will depend on your medical record and medical history. General anesthesia is used in the gallbladder removal operation.
Then the surgery commences. There are two gallbladder removal tehniquies: the laparoscopical method, where the doctor makes three small incisions near the gallbladder and one bigger incision in the abdomen. Through one of the small incisions the laparosope is inserted, an instrument with a special video camera attached to it, and through the other two small ones surgical instruments enter your body. The doctor looks at the video camera and guides the instruments in such way that they remove the gallbladder and then he takes it out of the body through the bigger cut that he made in the beginning. Because the incisions are small they will quickly heal and leave almost no scars. The patient can return to his normal life the second day.
The second method is simpler, but it is only done if the first one can't be applied. It's called the open gallbladder removal method and when doing it the surgeon makes a large incision near the gallbladder and then removes it through it with his hands, not with remote-controlled instruments.
After the gallbladder removal surgery you will be taken to a recovery unit, the doctor will prescribe you some medication, and then you can usually go home. There are risks of complications, these risks come with every surgery, but in most of the cases nothing wrong happens.
In the days following the gallbladder removal operation you can't lift heavy objects or run for a few weeks, but you can attend to your normal daily activities in 2-3 days. You need to change your diet to one that contains less fats, because now you don't have the gallbladder to help you in the fats digestion.