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What are some side effects following gallbladder removal?

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Quick Answer

Side effects of gallbladder removal surgery include difficulty in fat digestion, diarrhea, constipation and intestinal injury. Other side effects may include fever, vomiting, nausea, jaundice and bloating as a result of retained gallstones in the bile duct, according to Everyday Health.

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Full Answer

Removal of the gallbladder reduces bile in the intestines and causes frequent bowel movements. Doctors recommend a low-fat diet until the body adjusts to absence of a gallbladder and to eat small meals frequently. Medication that binds excess bile acids alleviates diarrhea. Diarrhea is a result of bile flowing in small amounts into the small intestines. A stool softener and foods rich in fiber such as whole grains, fruits and vegetables relieve constipation, states Everyday Health.

Complications of gallbladder removal surgery include injury to the bile duct, internal bleeding, infection and general anesthesia. Rare complications include leakage of bile into the abdominal cavity, injury of the hepatic artery and a cut liver, says WebMD.

Complications of gallbladder removal surgery depend on the health of the patient and the reason for surgery. Other potential complications are blood clots, heart problems, pancreatitis and pneumonia. The gallbladder is removed through an open cholecystectomy or a laparoscopic cholecystectomy. Gallbladder removal is necessary for patients with gallbladder cancer, according to Mayo Clinic.

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