Cholecystectomy (Gallbladder Removal)
Minimally Invasive Cholecystectomy
Your surgeon may recommend performing a laparoscopic gallbladder removal (cholecystectomy). This is one of the most common operations performed on adults in the United States. The gallbladder is not an essential organ, which means you can live normally without a gallbladder.
This operation requires general anesthesia. The surgeon will usually make 3 or 4 incisions in your abdomen. They’ll then insert a small, lighted device into one of the incisions and carefully remove your gallbladder. It usually takes 20 minutes to one hour.
This laparoscopic procedure causes less pain than traditional open surgery. It is less likely to cause complications, and has a faster recovery time. You usually go home on the day of the procedure if you have no complications.
Side effects and complications of gallbladder can include:
- loose or watery stools after gallbladder removal
- Need to convert to open procedure
- Infection at the incision sites or a deeper space infection (abscess)
- Leakage of bile contents from the liver
- Damage to the bile ducts leaving the liver
- Bleeding after surgery, requiring a blood transfusion or another operation to fix it