Possible Complications following Laparoscopic Cholecystectomy

Laparoscopic surgery has become a preferred surgical approach in many different instances as it shows several definite advantages against the tradition open surgical techniques. Gall bladder surgery is one such instance in which laparoscopic surgery had become the surgery of choice and there are several reasons why this procedure has gained the preference among surgeons as well as among patients.

What are the advantages of undergoing laparoscopic cholecystectomy as against open cholecystectomy?

Laparoscopic techniques will only make use of small incisions of half an inch length whereas the usual open surgery will require a larger incision in the abdominal wall. Furthermore, because of the larger surgical wound, it will require more time to heal as well as to be hospitalized whereas laparoscopic techniques will make such stays shorter and the recovery faster.

What are the possible complications following undergoing laparoscopic cholecystectomy?

Although the risks of complications are less than 2% in laparoscopic techniques, these complications have to be considered during and after such operations are performed. Let us now see some of these manifestations one by one.


Being a complication involving many surgical procedures, laparoscopy can also give rise to intra or post operative bleeding and this can result from a failure to capture damaged blood vessels, damage to other organs and structures…etc. Although many of such occurrences will settle itself rather quickly, there are instances in which open surgery may have to be performed to arrest bleeding and to prevent any further complications.

Damage to internal organs:

The risk of damage to internal organs could be more with laparoscopic procedures as the instruments will pass through the abdominal cavity against other visceral organs. Such contact can accidentally give rise to organ damage which might require a different open surgical approach to correct.


It is a complication which can happen even with any other surgical procedure and may give rise to delayed recovery following a laparoscopic surgery.

Need to convert into an open surgery:

According to statistics, about 5% of laparoscopic cholecystectomies will require re-doing as an open procedure and among the reasons for such conversion, previous surgeries in the region, poor visualization of the gall bladder, bleeding as well as being obese have to be highlighted.

Apart from these manifestations, other complications that can take place include damage to the common bile duct and therefore leakage of bile into the abdominal cavity, pneumonia, blood clot formation as well as complications related to the anesthetic agensts which has been used.