Sometimes the gallbladder can become inflamed, infected or blocked. If these ailments occur, you may either be hospitalized due to urgency, or your primary care physician may suggest cholecystectomy, or gallbladder removal surgery.
What Does the Gallbladder do?
Your gallbladder is an organ that stores bile to help the body digest fat. While it performs an important function, it is not absolutely necessary. Other parts of the body can help bile reach the small intestine in the gallbladder’s absence.
Symptoms of a Diseased Gallbladder
The following symptoms could be an indication of an inflamed or infected gallbladder:
- Pain in the upper right abdomen
- Tenderness in the abdomen
These symptoms may be more pronounced after eating a high-fat or large meal.
What Happens When a Gallbladder is Diseased?
Though it may depend on the disease, most solutions to gallbladder disease treatment involve surgical removal of the gallbladder. Common types of gallbladder diseases are:
- Cholecystitis: This is the inflammation of the gallbladder.
- Gallstones: Much like kidney stones, a hardened deposit may form in the gallbladder, which can cause pain because of inflammation.
- da Vinci Gallbladder Surgery: Gallbladder surgery can be done using open surgery (through one large incision) or minimally invasively (through a few small incisions or one belly button incision) using da Vinci Surgery
- Gallbladder Polyps: Non-cancerous tumors or growths may form in the gallbladder. Depending on the severity, this may need to be surgically removed.
- Gallbladder Cancer: Though very rare, gallbladder cancer still happens, and isn’t commonly detected due to infrequent testing.
Removing a Diseased Gallbladder (Cholecystectomy)
During minimally invasive gallbladder surgery, surgeons remove the gallbladder with precision instruments through either a small incision in the belly button or a few small incisions. One of the instruments used has a small camera attached to it, which allows the surgeon to take pictures inside the body to guide the operation.
Lifestyle Changes After a Cholecystectomy
For the first few weeks, it is recommended that patients limit their intake to foods low in fat. A normal diet may be resumed after this period has passed. Most patients only notice minimal changes to their digestion, if any at all. But, In rare instances, digestive discomfort may be felt.
Benefits of a daVinci Cholecystectomy
There are many benefits to da Vinci surgery, including:
- Low rate of complications
- Minimal, if any, scarring from the surgery
- Minimal pain
- Shorter hospital stay
- Low rate of wound infection
Risks of Minimally Invasive Cholecystectomy
Every surgery comes with risk. If you are undergoing a minimally invasive Cholecystectomy, there are a few risks to keep in mind, such as:
- Potential injury to small and large intestine
- Urinary retention
- Hernia at incision site
- Potential bile duct injury
Consult one of our physicians if you believe you may be a candidate for a da Vinci Cholecystectomy procedure.
Gallballer Removal in Johnson City & Kingsport, TN
Contact The John Lawson Surgical Group at (426) 975-5650 (Johnson City) or (423) 247-0065 (Kingsport) for any additional questions you have regarding gallbladder removal or an appointment.