The gallbladder is easy to ignore until you develop bloating, nausea, and severe upper-abdominal pain related to inflammation and infection caused by gallstones. Gallbladder surgery can fix that. The surgeons at Sierra Pacific Surgical in Roseville, Folsom, and Carmichael, California, provide minimally invasive laparoscopic gallbladder surgery that gets you living pain-free again with minimal downtime. Schedule an evaluation today for top-level surgical expertise delivered in a patient-friendly environment. Call one of their Northern California offices or request an appointment online.
The gallbladder is a small, pear-shaped organ located just below the liver in the upper-right abdomen. It collects and stores bile, a fluid created by your liver to help digest fatty foods.
When you consume fatty substances, your small intestines trigger nerve signals that cause the gallbladder to contract and release its stored bile into the intestines via the common bile duct.
Gallstones are tiny crystals that form in the gallbladder, sometimes clumping together and becoming large or numerous enough to block bile from flowing into the small intestines.
In that case, your gallbladder continues to contract in response to requests from your intestines, and the liver continues to drain bile into the gallbladder. As a result, you experience pain and other symptoms related to an overfilled, inflamed, infected, and swollen gallbladder.
The only practical solution at that point is surgery to remove the gallbladder (cholecystectomy), which you can live without since the liver will drain bile directly into the small intestine.
Your symptoms may vary in intensity, sometimes flaring following a fatty meal and then subsiding for a time.
However, gallstones can travel from the gallbladder into the duct connecting with the intestines, causing further pain and leading to complications such as jaundice (yellow skin tone), fever, pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas), and even gallbladder rupture.
Based on your pre-surgical evaluation, the Sierra Pacific Surgical team usually recommends minimally invasive (laparoscopic) gallbladder removal to relieve your symptoms and prevent further illness.
You’re asleep during the surgery, which is usually an outpatient procedure. Your surgeon makes four small incisions in the abdomen, using one to insert a small tube with an attached camera (laparoscope).
The camera transmits real-time video images of the surgical field to a nearby monitor, which your surgeon watches while using instruments inserted through the other incisions to remove the gallbladder.
You may undergo X-rays or other imaging studies at this point in the procedure to ensure there aren’t any gallstones trapped in the bile duct. Laparoscopic cholecystectomy generally takes about an hour, and you spend a few hours in the recovery room afterward under observation as the anesthesia wears off.
Schedule an evaluation at Sierra Pacific Surgical today for more information about laparoscopic cholecystectomy. Call their office or request an appointment online.