This is generally a safe operation with very low complication rates.
The risks specific to cholecystectomy include a small risk (less than 1%) of an injury to the bile duct, nearby organs and blood vessels, which may require further repair of the injury. Hernia may form at the incision sites, especially in obese patients that may require repair in the future.
Occasionally (< 3%), stones may drop into the bile duct during the surgery or it may be undiagnosed before the surgery; these may require subsequent procedures e.g. ERCP to treat.
Surgical risks include the risks in relation to general anaesthesia, wound infection, bleeding and rarely blood clots in the legs or lungs.
In the event of conversion of the laparoscopic approach to an open procedure, the risks will remain the same as above with similar good outcomes. However, post-operative recovery and hospital stay may be slightly longer.
What to expect after Gallstone Surgery?
Although gallbladder removal is a major abdominal surgery, most patients go home on the same day or the day after the
If the surgery was performed with an open procedure (larger cut), the patient may have to stay a few more days. Some pain, nausea and vomiting may occur but most are well controlled by medications.
Some patients may still feel some bloating and some may have loose stools after the surgery as the body gets used to the absence of the gallbladder. Most symptoms will usually resolve within a couple of weeks.
Once discharged, most patients can perform light duties and most activities of daily living. Most of the patients can return to work within a week after the surgery, after a follow-up review with the surgeon.
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