Outcomes Following Cholecystectomy in Pregnant and Nonpregnant Women

According to data collected between 1999 and 2006, women who underwent cholecystectomy to remedy biliary tract disease during pregnancy differed in several demographic categories from women who did not undergo the procedure.

Cholecystectomy, removal of the gallbladder, is a treatment for biliary tract disease, a condition that occurs due to increased estrogen and progesterone levels during pregnancy. This retrospective, cross-sectional study analyzed national data for pregnant women suffering from biliary tract disease. The authors performed statistical analyses combining patient-level variables, such as income level and race/ethnicity, with outcome variables, including in-hospital complications, mean length of stay (LOS), and costs associated with cholecystectomy. The data came from the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project-Nationwide Inpatient Sample (HCUP-NIS). HCUP-NIS that contains records of approximately 8 million hospital stays per year.

Key Findings:

  • Women who underwent cholecystectomy were more likely to hold private insurance than women who did not receive the procedure.
  • Patients with Medicaid had higher rates of surgical complications following cholecystectomy than patients with private insurance.
  • Laporoscopic cholecystectomy led to significantly fewer complications than open cholecystectomy.

This cross-sectional study identified demographic characteristics associated with a higher likelihood that a pregnant woman suffering from biliary tract disease will receive a cholecystectomy.