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Am J Surg. 1990 May;159(5):489-92.

Cholecystectomy provides long-term symptom relief in patients with acalculous gallbladders.

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Virginia Mason Medical Center, Seattle, Washington 98101.


Elective cholecystectomy was performed in 60 patients with biliary colic and acalculous gallbladders during a 5-year period. Gallbladder wall disease was significantly more common (p less than 0.01) in patients with acalculous gallbladders than in a similar symptomatic group with calculous gallbladders. Thirty-four of 43 patients (77%) available for long-term follow-up reported complete symptom relief after cholecystectomy. Preoperative ultrasonography, biliary scintigraphy, oral cholecystography, upper gastrointestinal series, and pathologic features of the gallbladder were equivocal in predicting long-term symptom relief. In patients with acalculous biliary colic, the best predictor of complete symptom relief is an adequate history of true biliary colic.

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