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Patrick Moore MD Inc

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  • 25405 Hancock Avenue, Suite 217
    Murrieta, CA 92562
  • 951-477-5700

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Signs of Complications After Gallbladder Surgery

Every year, about a million people have their gallbladder removed surgically. However, only a few experience complications after gallbladder surgery, especially as laparoscopic procedures have become more common. About 0.5% to 6% of people have to deal with these complications, some of them requiring medical attention.

If performed correctly, gallbladder surgery should heal smoothly within a few weeks. However, there are a few warning signs that will tell you there’s a problem. Sometimes, the complication will pass by itself, albeit prolonging your recovery time. Other times, it may require immediate medical attention. In this article, we will talk about potential complications after gallbladder surgery that you need to be aware of.

Average Gallbladder Surgery Recovery Time

After your laparoscopic surgery, you should be able to return home on the same day. You will be given pain medication to help with any discomfort for the first few days. Depending on your job and its requirements, you can expect to be out of work for at least one week with no heavy lifting for 10 days. Discussing this with Dr. Patrick Moore is best to ensure that you and your employer are on the same page for your recovery process.

Possible Complications After Gallbladder Surgery

Gallbladder surgery has the potential for complications, some more significant than others. You may notice the following signs in the few days after the surgery:

  • Difficulty in Digestion

Depending on the stage of the gallbladder surgery recovery, digestion difficulties can be either a side effect or a complication. In the next few days after the surgery, it is normal to experience digestion problems, as your body is adjusting to digesting fat differently. These effects should not last long, but if they keep going, you may want to talk to Dr. Moore about it.

  • Constipation

Very often, removing the problematic gallbladder should loosen your stool. However, anesthesia and surgery can cause you to be constipated in the short term. If your stool does not loosen up after a few days, then you may want to check in with Dr. Moore.

  • Intestinal Injury

While very rare, damage can occur to your intestines during gallbladder surgery. However, if you still feel pain that seems to get worse after a few days, make sure to contact Dr. Patrick Moore.

  • Fever or Jaundice

If the gallbladder was removed as a result of gallstones, a stone may remain in the bile duct. This can cause a blockage that can lead to jaundice, fever, or severe pain. Again, in this case, you should address the matter with Dr. Moore.

Top Signs You May Need to Call the Doctor

Side effects after gallbladder removal surgery are relatively normal, and most should go away within a few weeks. However, if you notice the following signs, you may want to give Dr. Patrick Moore a call:

  • You are experiencing intense vomiting and nausea
  • The pain did not subside with time or became even worse
  • You notice that the whites in your eyes or your skin have developed a yellow shade
  • You are experiencing diarrhea that has been going on for more than three days after surgery
  • You’ve had no passing of gas or bowel movements for more than three days after the surgery

These symptoms are often descriptive of the post-cholecystectomy syndrome, which can make itself noticed even months after the surgery. If they appear, then you need to address them as soon as possible, to avoid any future complications.

The Bottom Line

Complications after gallbladder removal surgery are not to be ignored, especially if they go on for more than a few days. If you notice that something is amiss, make sure to have it checked and call for an appointment right away!

For more information about potential complications after gallbladder removal surgery, make sure to contact Dr. Patrick Moore at 951-477-5700. He will be more than happy to help you.