Gallbladder Post-surgery effects and Recovery


Gallbladder post-surgery effects and recovery can be daunting to navigate. The key to success is to understand the potential side effects and possible complications that can occur. As a patient, it is important to know what to expect after surgery and how long the recovery process should take.

Additionally, having a plan for maintaining optimal health and nutrition during recovery is essential for a successful outcome.

A gallbladder is a 4 inches long oval-shaped organ connected with the liver in the body to concentrate bile from the liver and discharge it into the small intestine to help break down the food you consume. The Process require to remove the gallbladder is called cholecystectomy

If a gallbladder has stones also known as gallstones or gets tainted.

The most incessant and common types of gallbladder disease emerge because of excess cholesterol or bilirubin, a liver pigment, in bile. This prompts:

  • Gallstones
  • bile duct stones
  • intense or chronic inflammation due to gallstones

If symptoms become more complex and majorly impact your health, doctors may propose gallbladder surgery either laparoscopic gallbladder removal surgery or Open gallbladder surgery based on your medical examination.

Gallbladder helps flow the bile freely into the small intestine which helps break down food easily and effectively as it did in the gallbladder. Whereas you can live without a gallbladder, you might have to incorporate a few changes in lifestyle and diet plans to make up for this change. However, there is a possibility that you may experience a few side effects after gallbladder removal surgery.

Post-gallbladder surgery side effects

Any surgical procedure would have its merits and demerits, including incision bleeding after surgery, pain or infection along with fever, or without fever. It’s also possible to experience indigestion when the gallbladder is removed.

Difficulty in digesting fatty meals

It will take some time for your body to get to a normal state and adapt to changes after gallbladder removal surgery which also includes digesting fat. Medicines you were prescribed during gallbladder surgery might also lead to indigestion. Technically, these symptoms don’t last for too long, however, few individuals may develop or experience long-term side effects, typically caused by bile leakage into different organs or gallstones that were left in the bile ducts.

Flatulence and Diarrhea after gallbladder surgery

Acid reflux can cause flatulence or diarrhea, eventually made worse by an overabundance of fat or less fiber in meals. Leakage of bile can lead to scarcity of bile in the intestines tracts to process fat, which leads to diarrhea.


In spite of removing an unhealthy gallbladder generally decreasing constipation, surgery and anesthesia used in during the medical procedure can prompt short-term constipation. Dehydration can also lead to constipation.

Injury to intestines

During gallbladder removal surgery there might be a possibility of damage to the intestines, however, it’s very uncommon. Pain after surgery is normal but if it continues and becomes intense even after a few days of the surgery instead of getting better, please consult your doctor.

Jaundice or fever after surgery

Leftover stones in the bile duct after gallbladder removal surgery can create severe pain or may lead to jaundice, which changes the appearance or complexion to yellowish skin. A complete blockage of the bile duct can cause serious infection.

Diet Plan after Gallbladder Surgery

Recovery after Gallbladder surgery

Gallbladder surgery recovery can go smoothly if there are no post-surgical complications.

Your surgeon will suggest you stay in the hospital for approximately 3-5 days if you had open surgery, this will increase the success rate of the operation and help maintain speedy recovery. In the event you had laparoscopic gallbladder surgery, the doctor can discharge you the same day after examination of your health condition.

After surgery, you should not do anything that could cause you discomfort or pain for at least 15 days, including staying in bed.

Your surgeon will brief you on activities to perform such as cleaning your wounds and indicating any symptoms. Avoid taking shower until your surgeon suggests it. Stay in touch with your doctor and medical team until you recover from surgery while staying at home.

Your doctor will also inform you about the diet plans or prescribe for liquid and bland diet for the initial few days for faster recovery.

After a few days, the doctor might suggest switching to your normal diet regime slowly and steadily with plenty of water throughout the day.

It would be great to follow a simple and healthy diet plan such as fresh fruits and vegetables with less salt, sweets, spices, and fatty meals.

When to consult a doctor

It’s pretty obvious to have some gallbladder post-surgery effects, if you encounter any of the listed, consult your doctor immediately for a speedy recovery:

  • vomiting and nausea getting worse
  • change in skin or whites of eyes to color yellow
  • pain that is getting worse with time instead of getting better, or notice new abdominal pain
  • no bowel movement or passing of gas for more than three days after surgery
  • Constipation for over 3days after surgery
  • Flatulence or diarrhea that continues for over 3 or more days after surgery


For more information on “Gallbladder post-surgery effects and recovery” or consultation with Dr. Valeria Simone MD, at Southlake General Surgery, Texas, USA. Don’t hesitate to get in touch with our healthcare expert today at +1(817) 748-0200.

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