If you experience chronic indigestion or pain in the middle or upper right abdomen one to two hours after eating, in addition to gas and bloating, you may be suffering from gallstones. A fairly common condition, gallstones affect up to 15 percent of the population.
While very few people will have symptoms that require treatment, more severe symptoms warrant swift evaluation by your doctor. If you have had repeated attacks of gallstones and symptoms are severe, our surgeons offer minimally invasive surgical procedures that can help eliminate your symptoms and prevent more severe complications of gallstone attacks.
Diagnosing and Treating Gallstones at Nebraska Medicine Includes
A Team Approach
To provide you with the most appropriate and comprehensive care, our physicians use a team approach that typically includes gastroenterologists, surgeons and interventional radiologists.
If gallstones are suspected, our gastroenterologists will quickly run the necessary tests to determine the source of your discomfort. Because gallstones can lead to pancreatitis, prompt treatment will be provided. Pancreatitis can cause many complications including a serious infection, diabetes, malnutrition, kidney failure or pancreatic cancer. Our doctors will safely remove the gallbladder before complications occur.
Minimally Invasive Procedures
Nebraska Medicine is a pioneer in this field and has even perfected it, making surgery less demanding and more comfortable for each patient. Making just three small incisions, our surgeons use specialized techniques such as miniature cameras with microscopes, tiny fiber optic lights and high definition monitors, to remove the gallbladder without requiring you to undergo major surgery or large incisions. Benefits include less pain, small incisions, less preoperative time, quicker return to normal activity, fewer complications and reduced risk of herniation or wound separation.
Expertise and Experience
Our doctors have performed thousands of minimally invasive procedures with a success rate often three times better than the national average. Our doctors also have published papers about how to perfect minimally invasive procedures and make them safer for our patients. Because of our findings, centers around the country have changed how they perform these procedures. Our expertise and advanced training prevent possible complications.
Remove Large Gallstones in an Hour-Long Procedure
In some cases, you can now have large gallstones in your bile ducts removed without a single incision in an hour-long outpatient procedure performed only at Nebraska Medicine. Called SpyGlass Direct Visualization System, our doctors place a small, flexible lighted tube through an endoscope down a patient’s throat into the bile ducts. Doctors then use sound waves to obliterate the gallstones into smaller pieces in a technique called lithotripsy. The stones can then be removed through the endoscope.
Highly ranked care
Each year, U.S. News and World Report surveys the nation’s roughly 5,000 hospitals to come up with the year’s list of Best Hospitals. Just 3 percent of the hospitals analyzed for Best Hospitals earn national ranking in even one specialty. We have been recognized as a high-performing hospital in Gastroenterology in the 2011-12 , 2013-14 and 2016-17 U.S. News & World Report Best Hospitals ranking. In addition, we were ranked nationally in Gastroenterology in the 2012-13 and 2014-15 U.S. News & World Report Best Hospitals ranking.