Patients' experiences of laparoscopic cholecystectomy in day surgery

J Clin Nurs. 2003 Mar;12(2):253-9. doi: 10.1046/j.1365-2702.2003.00699.x.


Previous research has concentrated mainly on surgical aspects and postoperative complication rates after day surgery laparoscopic cholecystectomy (LC), and less on patients' experiences and nursing care aspects. A qualitative study was conducted aimed at investigating patients' experiences of LC in day surgery. Ten women and two men were interviewed. The material was coded, categorized and analysed using qualitative analysis. The findings demonstrate that individuals with gallstone disease experience limitations in their daily life and feelings of socially handicapped. Prior to surgery, the patients felt anxious and expressed a wish for tranquilizers, and to meet the surgeon responsible. At discharge after day surgery, amnesia was experienced and the respondents did not remember important information about the operation given by the surgeon. Experience of postoperative pain varied greatly. Several respondents had a relapse of pain on the third day lasting up to 1 week. The need for additional pain medication and a bloated feeling were reported. Some respondents reported nausea and vomiting, and most had questions about wound care. The need for additional telephone follow-up was mentioned, as was the fact that it was difficult to come home to small children. However, the great majority felt that returning home on the same day as the operation, was positive.

MeSH terms

  • Activities of Daily Living
  • Adult
  • Ambulatory Surgical Procedures / adverse effects*
  • Ambulatory Surgical Procedures / psychology*
  • Ambulatory Surgical Procedures / rehabilitation
  • Anecdotes as Topic
  • Cholecystectomy, Laparoscopic / adverse effects*
  • Cholecystectomy, Laparoscopic / psychology*
  • Cholecystectomy, Laparoscopic / rehabilitation
  • Cholelithiasis / psychology
  • Fatigue / etiology
  • Female
  • Gallstones / surgery
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pain, Postoperative / psychology
  • Patient Satisfaction
  • Postoperative Complications / psychology
  • Sweden