Cholecystectomy

What is cholecystitis?

Gall bladder is a small organ near theliver stores and releases bile fluid secreted by the liver that plays a part in digesting food. Normally, bile passes out of the gallbladder on its way to the small intestine.

Cholecystitis is inflammation of the gallbladder. If the flow of bile is blocked, it builds up inside the gallbladder, causing swelling, pain, and possible infection.

What causes cholecystitis?

A gallstone stuck in the bile duct, a tube that carries bile from the gallbladder, is most often the cause of sudden (acute) cholecystitis. Thegallstone blocks fluid from passing out of the gallbladder. This results in an irritated and swollen gallbladder. Infection or trauma, such as an injury from an accident, can also cause cholecystitis.

Acute acalculous cholecystitis, though rare, is most often seen in critically ill people in hospital intensive care units. In these cases, there are no gallstones. Complications from another severe illness, such as HIV or diabetes, cause the swelling.

Long-term (chronic) cholecystitis is another form of cholecystitis. It occurs when the gallbladder remains swollen over time, causing the walls of the gallbladder to become thick and hard.

What are the symptoms?

The most common symptom of cholecystitis is pain in your upper right abdomen that can sometimes move around to your back or right shoulder blade. Other symptoms include:
  • Nausea or vomiting.
  • Tenderness in the right abdomen.
  • Fever.
  • Pain that gets worse during a deep breath.
  • Pain for more than 6 hours, particularly after meals.
    Older people may not have fever or pain. Their only symptom may be a tender area in the abdomen.

How is cholecystitis diagnosed?

Diagnosing cholecystitis starts when you describe your symptoms to your doctor. Next is a physical exam. Your doctor will carefully feel your right upper abdomen to look for tenderness. You may have blooddrawn and an ultrasound, a test that uses sound waves to create a picture of your gallbladder. Ultrasound may show gallstones, thickening of the gallbladder wall, extra fluid, and other signs of cholecystitis. This test also allows doctors to check the size and shape of your gallbladder.

What is Laparoscopic Cholecystectomy?

Laparoscopic cholecystectomy is a procedure in which the gallbladder is removed by laparoscopic techniques. Laparoscopic surgery also referred to as minimally invasive surgery describes the performance of surgical procedures with the assistance of a video camera and several thin instruments.