The main function of gallbladder is to store bile produced in the liver, concentrate it and ensure the flow of bile into the duodenum in response to food.
Gallstone disease is one of the most common problems that affects the digestive system. Most of gallstones are asymptomatic. They do not cause any complaints. Each year 3% from gallstones become symptomatic. In 3-5% from asymptomatic cases occur complications.
Complications of gallstones:
Biliary colic, gallbladder inflammation, gangrene of the gallbladder. Migration of gallstones into the bile duct causes jaundice. Obstruction of the pancreatic duct results with cholangitis and pancreatitis.
The treatment of symptomatic gallstones is surgical removal of the gallbladder. Patients with problems causing temporary pain such as biliary colic, obstruction of the bile duct ect. can be followed up or treated in surgical way. Very important at this stage is informing the patient and making decision about treatment together with patient.
What type of surgery can be performed?
The treatment of gallstones is cholecystectomy - the removal of the gallbladder. It can be performed using open or closed (laparoscopic) technique.