Note: Jaundice is the medical term for skin and eyes that look yellow.
(Jaundice may occur if gallstones block the bile duct)
How Do Doctors Find Gallbladder Problems?
Your doctor will probably order a test called an ultrasound. It shows the inside of the body using sound waves. You are awake during the test, and it does not hurt.
If you need more tests, you might have a CT scan or a test called a HIDA scan. The HIDA scan uses an injection of dye to show how well your gallbladder and bile duct is working.
How Do Doctors Treat Gallbladder Problems?
Gallbladder removal is usually the best way to treat gallbladder problems. You might get some relief from changing your diet. For example, eating less fat can help. Gallstones rarely resolve spontaneously without intervention.
You might have heard about treatments to break up gallstones or make them melt away (dissolve). Unfortunately, these methods typically yield poor results.
What are the advantages of laparoscopic gallbladder surgery?
- Smaller incision – Several small incisions, each less than one (1) inch long, instead of a 5- to 7-inch incision for open surgery
- Less pain than after open surgery
- Quicker recovery than open surgery – You might go home the same day you have your surgery
- You can also go back to regular activities more quickly
- Lower risk of complications
Is Laparoscopic Gallbladder Removal for You?
Laparoscopic gallbladder removal might be the right choice for you because it is the most common type of gallbladder surgery. It might not be an option if:
- You have severe gallbladder problems
- You had earlier surgery in your upper abdomen
Ask your family doctor or other health care provider if this surgery is right for you. You should also talk with a surgeon who is trained and qualified to do laparoscopic gallbladder surgery. They can help you decide.