An organ you don’t necessarily need

The gallbladder is a small pear-shaped organ that sits under the liver on the right side of the abdomen. It functions as a storage container for bile, a liquid made by the liver that helps digest food. Surgery on the gallbladder may be necessary if stones form in the gallbladder or block the flow of bile, causing the organ to swell. Gallbladder removal surgery is typically done under general anesthesia using a laparoscope, which is a thin, lighted tube with a camera and light source on the end so the doctor can see inside the abdomen. The procedure involves four small incisions and usually takes about one to two hours to perform. Patients typically go home the same day or the day after surgery.

Visit our health library to learn more.

Share our page with family and friends!