There are various treatments for gallstones. You should ask your doctor for advice and find out which treatment works best for you.
If you have gallstones, but they don't bring any symptom, treatment may not even be necessary. However, if your gallstones do cause symptoms, don't hesitate to ask for medical help.
The usual way to treat gallstones is surgery. A surgeon removes your gallbladder. This is called cholecystectomy. But don't worry. You can still live normally without a gallbladder.
There are 2 types of cholecystectomy: laparoscopic cholecystectomy and open cholecystectomy. In most cases, surgeons perform laparoscopic cholecystectomy. You may go home the same day you have the surgery. If your gallbladder is hurt, or inflamed, the surgeon will perform open cholecystectomy. You have to stay in hospital for about a week after the surgery.
There are non-surgical treatments. Doctors only use them on patients who have cholesterol stones or conditions that make surgery impossible. These treatments include endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP), oral dissolution therapy, and shock wave lithotripsy.
ERCP is used to get rid of gallstones stuck in the bile duct. Oral dissolution therapy involves consumption of medicines such as Chenix and Actigall. They dissolve gallstones, but slowly. Doctors use shock wave lithotripsy to blast gallstones into tiny pieces. This method is rarely used.
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