When is gallbladder removal recommended?

In cases where gallstones develop, it is often necessary to remove the gallbladder. Gallstones can cause inflammation and infection, as well as a number of uncomfortable symptoms including bloating; pain; nausea; and vomiting.

Other conditions for which gallbladder removal may be recommended include pancreatitis; cholecystitis; biliary dyskinesia; and choledocholithiasis. Symptoms that may suggest the need for gallbladder removal include pain in the right upper area of the abdomen, which can extend to the middle of the abdomen as well as the back and right shoulder; fever; and jaundice.

What does the gallbladder removal procedure involve?

In most cases, Dr Govender will perform laparoscopic surgery in order to remove the gallbladder. An incision will be made in the abdomen through which the gallbladder is carefully removed. If the gallbladder is severely infected or diseased, open surgery may be necessary.

What can I expect after the procedure?

Dr Govender will ensure that your vitals have stabilised before you are discharged from hospital. Full recovery from the procedure can take up to six weeks, during which time you should avoid heavy lifting and strenuous exercise. You might experience some mild pain following surgery, although Dr Govender will prescribe any appropriate medications to ease discomfort. He will advise you on when to change your bandages where necessary.

When is appendix removal recommended?

Removal of the appendix, known as appendectomy, is recommended in cases of appendicitis. Appendicitis refers to a condition in which the appendix becomes inflamed and swollen as a result of an infection. Some common symptoms of appendicitis include pain in the stomach that develops near to the belly button, and spreads to the lower right side of the abdomen; nausea; vomiting; and swelling in the abdomen.