upper right abdominal pain after gallbladder removal

Possible Side Effect of Gallbladder Removal Surgery

The gallbladder is a small organ located in our stomach, specifically under the liver. Its function to store bile, made by the liver, to help digest and absorb fat and vitamins. Though our gallbladder exists for a reason, it is alright to take it out if some problem occurs. This removal procedure is called cholecystectomy and is very common.

Reason for cholecystectomy

The reason for gallbladder removal always relates to an issue in the gallbladder with a common symptom of intense pain in the upper right abdominal pain. This pain is usually caused by the presence of gallstones that block out the flow of bile. The gallstones are made up of cholesterol or bilirubin.

There is also a condition called choledocholithiasis that happens when a gallstone blocks the common bile duct. This causes the bile which is supposed to be transferred to the small intestine back up to the liver. Resulting in a removal of the gallbladder to prevent this condition from reoccurring.

Although gallstones are common, some problems that could lead to gallbladder removal do not involve gallstones. An inflamed gallbladder, for instance, is not always caused by gallstones, but a physical injury in the abdomen. And in some cases, it leads to gallbladder removal. Another condition could also be buildup bile due to lack of oxygen in the gallbladder.

Complication after gallbladder removal

Although human beings can adapt to whatever changes going on inside their body, some experience problems after the gallbladder are removed.

  • Postcholecystectomy syndrome. This syndrome often occurs following the removal of the gallbladder, which includes an upset stomach, nausea, and vomiting.¬†Diarrhea and bloating are also common due to the overflow of bile into the small intestine. As well as upper right abdominal pain after gallbladder removal.
  • Sphincter of Oddi Dysfunction. This problem is frequently characterized by the central and upper right abdominal pain following the gallbladder removal that lasts for 30 minutes or more and spreads to the back and the shoulder. These happen when the sphincter of Oddi, which is a valve inside the small intestine that controls the bile and pancreatic juice, is tense. If this pain persists, you have to see your doctor immediately.
  • Fat digesting issue. As change occurred in your body, it requires time to make adjustments in terms of digesting fat. Usually, it doesn’t take that much time, but some people develop another side effect because of bile leaking into another organ.
  • Intestinal damage. Although this particular issue rarely happens, it is possible for the surgeon to accidentally injure the intestine. This damage may cause some pain that lasts more than a few days and only gets worse. You need to tell your doctor then, to see if there’s another problem aside from the recovery process after the surgery (read: Gallbladder Removal Recovery Time).

The recovery

After surgery, you should not strain yourself physically and just rest. You should also be mindful of your wound and know how to tend to it to make sure it doesn’t get an infection. For the first few days, you might not be able to eat freely. Your food is being watched carefully by limiting sweet, salty, spicy, and fatty food. Something is changing, so is what you put inside.

Make sure you listen and follow every instruction and restriction given by your doctor. He knows better.