Boots WebMD Partners in Health
Return To Boots

Digestive health centre

When to have surgery for an inflamed gallbladder

BMJ Group Medical Reference

If your gallbladder is inflamed, you will probably stay in hospital for a while.

While you are there:

These things should make you feel better.

Then your doctor may give you a choice between two ways of treating your gallstones:

  • Have your gallbladder taken out soon, usually within three days of coming to hospital. This is called an early operation.

  • Go home and plan to have your gallbladder taken out about six weeks to eight weeks later. This is called a delayed operation.

Here are some things to think about if you are given this choice. For these things, it doesn't matter what kind of operation you are going to have ( keyhole surgery, open surgery, or mini-keyhole surgery).

  • If you have your operation early, you are likely to go home from hospital sooner and you may need fewer painkillers. [37] [38] [39] [40] [41]

  • The chances that you will have problems during surgery are the same, whether you have an early or a delayed operation. [37] [38] [40] [41] [42] [43]

  • Your gallbladder might flare up or get infected while you wait for a delayed operation.

  • Between 1 in 5 and 1 in 8 people who decide to wait need to have an operation before they planned it. This is because their pain comes back, or they get problems like an infection. [37] [39]

  • Your symptoms might go away completely while you are waiting for the operation. Then you may not need surgery. This happens to 1 in 10 people. [42]



These medicines are used to help your immune system fight infection. There are a number of different types of antibiotics that work in different ways to get rid of bacteria, parasites, and other infectious agents. Antibiotics do not work against viruses.


You get an infection when bacteria, a fungus, or a virus get into a part of your body where it shouldn't be. For example, an infection in your nose and airways causes the common cold. An infection in your skin can cause rashes such as athlete's foot. The organisms that cause infections are so tiny that you can't see them without a microscope.

For more terms related to Gallstones


For references related to Gallstones click here.
Last Updated: November 23, 2012
This information does not replace medical advice.  If you are concerned you might have a medical problem please ask your Boots pharmacy team in your local Boots store, or see your doctor.

Popular slideshows & tools on BootsWebMD

woman looking at pregnancy test
Early pregnancy symptoms
donut on plate
The truth about sugar addiction
smiling african american woman
Best kept secrets for beautiful hair
couple watching sunset
How much do you know?
nappy being changed
How to change your baby's nappy
woman using moisturizer
Causes and home solutions
assorted spices
Pump up the flavour with spices
bag of crisps
Food cravings that wreck your diet
woman with cucumbers on eyes
How to banish dark circles and bags
probiotic shakes
Help digestion
polka dot dress on hangar
Lose weight without dieting