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Gallbladder Surgery

Gallbladder Surgery Brighton (Cholecystectomy)

Cholecystectomy is the surgical removal of the gallbladder.
The operation is done to remove the gallbladder due to gallstones causing infection or pain. Your gallbladder is removed using keyhole surgery.

Gallbladder Disease

Patients frequently experience nausea, bloating or a gassy feeling and pain in the upper abdomen, especially after eating certain foods.

Gallbladder disease is most often caused by gallstones which can be easily diagnosed/found by a sonogram – a painless test performed similar to an x-ray.

Once diagnosed, gallbladder disease can be taken care of with a minimally invasive procedure called laparoscopy. This is an operation done under general anaesthesia through four small “poke holes.” This procedure usually takes less than an hour to perform and the patient is usually discharged the same day. 

Laparoscopic surgery allows for decreased pain, increased mobility and faster return to normal everyday life.

This benefits the patient with more complicated gallbladder disease and often avoids the need for a large incision on the abdomen. Recuperation time is much shorter with laparoscopic surgery.

Signs and symptoms of gallbladder disease…

Include nausea, upper abdominal pain and bloating

Mimic indigestion or heartburn

Most usually occur after eating

The Gallbladder

The gallbladder is a very small organ under the right ribs and liver which helps with digestion.

Signs and symptoms of gallbladder disease often mimic HEARTBURN or INDIGESTION.

Gallbladder Disease

Gallbladder Facts

Approximately 10% of people in the United Kingdom have gallstones

Approximately 30% of patients with gallstones will require surgery

Most gallbladders are removed laparoscopically

Diabetics with gallstones tend to have more complicated gallbladder disease and should be referred to a surgeon sooner than non-diabetics

Gallstones are more common in women

The incidence of gallstones increases with age

Complications of gallbladder disease include infection, gangrene and perforation

Experienced gallbladder surgeons usually have lower complication risks

How is laparoscopic gallbladder removal performed?

Under general anesthesia, so you are asleep throughout the procedure

Using a cannula (a narrow tube-like instrument), Mr. Athanasiou enters the abdomen in the area of the belly-button

A laparoscope (a tiny telescope) connected to a special camera is inserted through the cannula, giving Mr. Athanasiou a magnified view of your internal organs on a television screen.

Other cannulas are inserted which allow Mr. Athanasiou to delicately separate the gallbladder from its attachments and then remove it through one of the openings.
In select patients, Mr. Athanasiou performs and x-ray called a cholangiogram, to identify stones, which may be located in the bile channels, or to insure that structures have been identified.

If Mr. Athanasiou finds one or more stones in the common bile duct, he may remove them with a special scope, may choose to have them removed later through a second minimally invasive procedure.

After Mr. Athanasiou removes the gallbladder, the small incisions are closed with a stitch or two or with surgical tape.

Weighing up the risks

What are the Risks?

The incidence of complications after cholecystectomy is relatively low, especially in experienced hands, but can include:

Complications of a general anesthetic

Postoperative bleeding

Injury to the bile ducts or right hepatic artery

Biliary leak

Wound infection

Injury to other abdominal organs

Pulmonary embolism

Deep vein thrombosis

Respiratory or urinary infections

How long does it take to recover?

Following successful gallbladder surgery, people usually have minimal pain that is well controlled with medication. You will be discharged home with a prescription for pain medication. You will be able to eat a normal light diet on the day after surgery and may be able to return to light work in three to four days. It is preferable to avoid exertion and heavy work for a couple of weeks though one can take regular walks, showers, and ride in a car if necessary. Driving can be attempted several days post-operatively.

Time to recover from Gallbladder surgery

How do I book the procedure with you?

The first step would be to book an initial consultation with me, to discuss your options. You can make an appointment directly with me using the following link: