How To Prepare For Gallbladder Surgery

Gallbladder removal surgery, medically known as cholecystectomy, is a vital procedure performed to treat gallstones and the complications it causes. It involves the surgical removal of your gallbladder, and it carries a small risk of complications. 

If you’re scheduled for a cholecystectomy, here are some tips that can help you fully prepare for your surgery.

Before the procedure

Once you decide to go ahead with your gallbladder removal surgery, your surgeon will explain in detail the procedure and address any fears and concerns that you might have. This is the perfect time to ask questions as it’ll put you at ease and make you feel less anxious before the procedure.

Food and medication

You’re required to stop taking certain medications and supplements before your cholecystectomy as they may increase your risk of bleeding and other complications. So, be sure to tell your surgeon about all the medicines and supplements you’re taking.

The night before your gallbladder surgery, you’re not supposed to eat or drink anything at least four hours before the operation. If you’re thirsty, only drink clear liquids two hours before the procedure. However, speak to your surgeon first as they can advise you accordingly.


Before your operation, shower using a mild antibacterial soap, paying close attention to your abdomen and groin. This minimizes the risk of infection. Similarly, avoid shaving the surgical site.

The day of operation

On the day of your gallbladder surgery, find someone to drive you to and from the hospital to ensure you’re well taken care of. This should be a friend or family member who can stay close the first night after surgery to keep an eye on you. Having someone close by is vital as they can quickly get help in case of an emergency or complication.

Additionally, only wear loose-fitting and comfortable clothes on the day of operation to make removal and dressing simple and easy. You should also remove any jewellery that you might be wearing and leave them at home.

Most people go home the same day of their gallbladder removal surgery, but complications might arise that force you to stay in the hospital one or more nights. It’s vital to plan ahead in case this happens by packing personal items like a toothbrush and a change of clothes to carry with you.

If you have any questions regarding your gallbladder surgery, contact us at Birmingham HPB Clinic today.