Where you spend your gallbladder surgery recovery immediately after the operation may highly rely on where you’ve done your surgery.
Expectations During the Gallbladder Surgery Recovery Period
Gallbladder surgery can be done either in an outpatient basis or in the hospital. If your case requires you to be hospitalized, you may have to spend 1-2 days in the hospital prior to discharge. Patients whose operation was done in a specialist clinic may be allowed to return home as early as a few hours post-op, given there has been no signs of severe complications and that patient is stable and conscious enough to go home with assistance.
It is normal to feel pain and discomfort for the first 2 days of your gallbladder surgery recovery. You may also feel the pain in your shoulder and belly. Sometimes, pain may even last for a week and this is still considered normal. The reason behind this is because of the gas used to inflate your abdomen during surgery. If pain persists beyond 7 days, we highly recommend that you consult for doctor for further assessment. Your doctor will most likely prescribe you with the needed analgesics and antibiotics. Analgesics may be taken every 6 hrs or as needed.
If you are experiencing frequent defecation and loose stools, don’t be alarmed yet. It is normal for a few days after the surgery as your digestive system tries to adjust and function without the gallbladder.
Minor inflammation or drainage of the operated sites is quite normal but you should be able to see it slowly getting healed and closes in a week. If there is persistence drainage, redness and foul odor on the surgical wound sites, you will have to consult your doctor about it. It could be that the wounds are already infected – which can be alarming if left untreated.
Immediately after surgery, you may feel slight muscle aches and nausea while the anesthesia has not yet completely subsided. At this time in the gallbladder surgery recovery period, you have to make sure that you are not left without assistance. Also, please understand that your doctor may not let you leave unless he/she is assured that you are completely stabilized.
Complications That Could Occur During Gallbladder Surgery Recovery
Here are some of the most common complications that may happen during the gallbladder surgery recovery period as a result of improper operation, faulty equipments or unexpected response of the patient’s body to the surgery:
Internal Bleeding and Infection
The possibility of internal bleeding and infection is highest the first few hours after the surgery. Therefore, your doctor will put you under critical watch immediately post-op to make sure that bleeding and infection and closely monitored and are easily intervened if detected.
Injury to Some Other Organs Near the Operated Site
You can never be sure that all operations would go 100 perfect. Sometimes, your doctor and the surgical equipments may unintentionally injure some parts of the digestive system closed to the gallbladder. These vital organs may include the liver, the cystic duct, and the small intestine. Although very rare, there may also be injury to some abdominal blood vessels.
During your gallbladder surgery recovery, your doctor will carefully monitor for gallstones that has remained inside the abdominal cavity or those that has been pushed into the common bile duct. Has this been the case, your doctor may have to subject you to another surgery before these gallstones create more problems in the future.
Which is Faster During Gallbladder Surgery Recovery: Laparoscopic or Open Surgery?
Since laparoscopic gall bladder surgery is a type of operation that doesn’t result to too much bleeding, open incision and increased possibility of bacterial accumulation, it is proven to be much faster to heal than when a patient undergoes open cholecystectomy.
With open surgery, the patient may be required to stay 2-4 days post operatively to further monitor the incision. Laparoscopy, however, will only require the patient to stay 2 days at most. In most instances, the patient is able to be discharged from the hospital/clinic the first 24hrs of the gallbladder surgery recovery.