What is the gallbladder?
When you’re overweight or obese, it can increase your chances of having gallbladder disease and needing surgery.
Your gallbladder is a small, pear-shaped organ located in the upper right area of your abdomen below your liver. Your liver produces bile, a substance that helps your body break down and digest the fat you eat. When you’re eating, bile flows directly to your small intestine from your liver. Between meals, it usually goes to your gallbladder for storage until it’s needed.
Unfortunately, being obese and morbidly obese can make it difficult for your organs to function correctly and lead to gallbladder disease. While not all forms of gallbladder issues are weight-related, upwards of 10-40% of men and women have some kind of gallbladder disease, and of those, 69% are overweight or obese.
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What is gallbladder disease?
Gallbladder disease describes several different issues, including inflammation, polyps, and cancer. The most common form of gallbladder disease is gallstones, which form from cholesterol and harden bile.
Common signs of gallbladder disease include:
- Pain in the mid to upper-right section of your abdomen
- Nausea or vomiting
- Fever or chills
- Chronic diarrhea
- Unusual stools or urine
To manage certain gallbladder problems, the organ may need to be surgically removed.
What is gallbladder surgery?
When you have gallbladder issues that cause significant pain, chronic problems, or other complications, Dr. Carlton might recommend gallbladder surgery to remove it. Dr. Carlton is an experienced surgeon who performs several general surgical procedures, from gallbladder surgery to hernia repairs. Whenever possible, he performs general surgery laparoscopically or with robotic assistance. These minimally invasive approaches use small incisions and camera-guidance that provide faster recovery times and fewer complications.
After you have gallbladder surgery, your digestion continues functioning normally but you no longer have a gallbladder to store bile. Gallbladder surgery isn’t always weight-related, but you can reduce your risk of gallbladder disease and surgery with weight loss. If you’re experiencing gallbladder symptoms or weight-loss solutions to protect your health, call Lonestar Bariatrics to schedule an appointment today.