Should I Have My Gallbladder Removed?

Your liver produces bile to help break down fats. If there’s any left over, the extra bile gets stored in your gallbladder, a small organ tucked underneath your liver. The next time you eat a particularly fatty meal, your gallbladder releases its bile store to help process the fat. 

It’s a great system until something goes wrong — and it does in 20.5 million American adults. The gallbladder is notoriously inefficient, and it can cause more harm than good. When this happens, you need gallbladder surgery

If your gallbladder needs to be removed, there’s no better place in Bakersfield, California, than at New Life Medical. Our Dr. Nirav Naik is the only surgeon in the area who performs this procedure using state-of-the-art, minimally invasive, robotic laparoscopic surgery.

To determine if your gallbladder is causing your symptoms and whether it’s time to have it removed, we’ve outlined the most common reasons here. 

What could go wrong with your gallbladder?

Bile is a thick substance that tends to build up and block the duct where it empties out into your bloodstream. This creates a perfect environment for infection and other problems. Here are a few of the things that could go wrong with your gallbladder:

Depending on the severity of your pain and how long you’ve been suffering, any of these conditions may warrant a cholecystectomy, which is the medical term for gallbladder removal.

Signs you should have your gallbladder removed

Regardless of which condition you have, the real indicator when it comes to deciding whether to remove the gallbladder is your level of pain and discomfort. 

If your symptoms are mild and you’ve just started noticing them, you may be able to get relief by changing your diet. Eating foods lower in fat could be all it takes to give your gallbladder a break and reduce your symptoms. But if they persist or get worse, you may need to consider surgery.

Here are a few signs that your gallbladder isn’t improving:

These symptoms are common to other medical conditions as well, so don’t assume you need a cholecystectomy until Dr. Naik gives you a definitive diagnosis. 

How we diagnose gallbladder problems

Dr. Naik relies on his years of experience and medical expertise to accurately diagnose your gallbladder condition. He may use blood and urine tests to check your enzyme levels, ultrasound or X-rays to check for gallstones, a CT scan or MRI to check for gallstones or blockage, and endoscopic tests to detect for inflammation.

These tests help Dr. Naik rule out other conditions with similar symptoms, such as:

Once you know for sure your gallbladder is the culprit, you can move forward with  gallbladder removal if necessary.

Most people live a perfectly normal life without their gallbladder, although you may need to adjust your diet slightly. For instance, some people find it helpful to limit fatty foods (sausage, cheese, cream) and eat smaller meals. But some of our patients report that they can eat anything they want with no adverse effects.

If you’re experiencing any of the classic gallbladder symptoms we’ve listed and want to know whether it means you need to consider surgery to have your gallbladder removed, call us at 661-230-8306 to arrange a consultation with Dr. Naik today.

You Might Also Enjoy...

Abdominal Pain? Here's When You Should Be Concerned

A huge helping of rich food, stress, and traveling can cause an occasional upset stomach, but the symptoms are generally short-lived. Here’s how to tell when your abdominal pain may be more than just a passing problem.

Reasons You Shouldn’t Ignore Hernia Pain

Hernia pain is a distinctive symptom that you might assume is something else that will pass eventually. But there are consequences of ignoring the pain that’s caused by a hernia. Here’s why you should listen to your body’s signals.

I’m Embarrassed About My Acne Scars

Acne may have made teen life miserable, but the ghostly scars it left behind can haunt you for the rest of your life. You can reduce the look of those pits and spots with laser skin resurfacing — here’s how it works.

Yes, You Can Remove Hair There

How do you get rid of unwanted hair? Do you shave? Pluck? Tweeze? Wax? If so, you’re stuck with that routine for the long haul. To break free from the rut, check out laser hair removal — it works wherever hair grows.

Does a Hernia Resolve on Its Own?

You’ve got a hernia — a bulge in your belly or your groin — and you’re hoping it’ll just go away on its own. Keep reading to find out if you can ignore it or if you need medical attention.

My BMI Score Shows I’m Overweight — What Can I Do?

Body mass index (BMI) is a screening tool that indicates how your weight compares to others of the same height. If your BMI falls into the overweight category or higher, here are some steps you can take to protect your health.