What is gallbladder?
Liver releases the fluid called bile used to digest the nutrients. This fluid reaches to the gall bladder via the biliary tracts. It is concentrated in the gall bladder. Bile is released into the intestine from the gallbladder when we eat something. It helps the digestion of food.
What is the gallbladder disease?
Gallstone and gallbladder polyp are the most frequent diseases of gallbladder. Stone in the gallbladder develops arising from a problem of bile production. Stones may not be realized for long years and also they may cause disorders such as stomachache, nausea and vomiting after eating. If the stones block cystic duct, inflammation (Acute cholecystitis) will develop in the gallbladder. Again if they block biliary tract, it may cause biliary tract inflammation (Acute cholangitis) or pancreatitis (acute pancreatitis). Gallstones can be identified with abdominal ultrasonographic examination easily. Current treatment of this disease is the operation. Even if the physicians tried to eliminate the gallstones by medicines for years, there is no alternative treatment method to the operation.
Gallstone (cholelithiasis) can be seen in people all around the world in the rate of 6-20% and it is estimated that about 4 millions of people have gallstone in Turkey. There are a number of factors causing cholelithiasis. As the age increases, possibility of occurrence of gallstone increases. It is more frequent in women than men and more frequent in women giving birth for a few times than women giving birth for fewer times. Possibility of incidence is high in persons having family history of gallstone, diabetes mellitus and being obese.
Gallbladder polyps are the formation of finger-like protrusion of internal surface layer of the gallbladder. Single polyp can be followed by ultrasonography provided that it is up to 1 cm. However, if the polyp is bigger than 1 cm or there are a number of polyps, risk of cancer of gallbladder increases and therefore, gallbladder should be removed surgically.
Other rare gallbladder disease is the cancer of gallbladder. Gallbaldder cancer is identified in the pathological examination of the gallbladder in the patients being operated for the gallstone. Its symptoms resemble to the gallstone. Some part of the liver is removed with the gallbladder.
How is the gallbladder surgery performed?
Gallbladder surgeries are performed as open or closed surgery. Closed (laparoscopic) method is employed today if there is not any obstacle. It is carried out by use of specialized instruments through the openings in the abdomen under general anesthesia. Biliary tract, gallbladder vein and joint duct are revealed in this method called safe cholecystectomy and then the surgery is performed. It takes about one hour. The patient stays at hospital for one night and then he is discharged. Persons having desk jobs can start to work 3 days later.
What are the advantages of laparoscopic cholecystectomy?
- The patient can stand up on the same day and meet his own needs.
- He can return to the normal life quickly.
- He feels little pain compared to the open surgery. He almost does not need painkillers.
- Fewer scars on the skin.
- Risk of infection in the incision area, wound dehiscence or hernia development is lower than the open surgeries.
- Possibility of post-op adhesion is lower because other organs in the abdominal area are not intervened.
I have had abdominal surgery before, Can I have laparoscopic surgery?
Intra-abdominal adhesion is generally common in the patients having open surgery before. For this reason, laparoscopic surgery is avoided. In fact, patients having open surgeries are the candidates for the closed gallbladder surgery. The decision is made based on the experience of the physician and operation incision of the patient.
Will I have problems after gallbladder is removed?
If the gallbladder begins to damage the body or constitutes a potential danger, it should be removed surgically. You will not encounter a problem in the rate of 97% after the gallbladder is removed. Very few numbers of patients may have the indigestion, swelling problems after eating something. These problems regress by short-term medication use.