The pre-operative and postoperative incidence of flatulent dyspepsia was studied in 108 patients undergoing cholecystectomy. Ninety (83%) had pre-operative symptoms; of these forty-one (46%) were symptom-free after operation and twenty-two (24%) were improved but twenty-seven (30%) were no better. Patients with a well-functioning gallbladder, demonstrated radiologically, were relieved significantly more often than those with a poor or non-functioning gallbladder. Fatty food precipitated the symptoms in the majority of patients.
These figures suggest that there is neither a direct causal relationship between gallstones and flatulent dyspepsia nor is the relationship entirely coincidental. The implications of these findings for clinical practice are discussed.
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