Gallstones are very common – as many as 1-in-5 adults have them.

In a significant number of people they can cause troublesome symptoms such as abdominal pain, indigestion, belching and bloating. More serious complications such as cholecystitis (gallbladder infection) and cholangitis (infection due to obstructed bile ducts) can also occur.

Laparoscopic cholecystectomy is one of the most common operations performed in Australia, and is performed in people who have symptoms due to the presence of gallstones. Most people need to spend one night in hospital after the operation, and can return to work within 1 to 2 weeks.