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Gallbladder and bile duct compensation

Our team of specialist medical negligence solicitors have over 25 years’ experience securing claims for people needing gallbladder compensation.  

It is estimated that in the UK 3.5 million people have gallstones. In England there are approximately 40,000 gallbladder removal operations each year, 98% of gallbladder surgery is done via a keyhole procedure (laparoscopic cholecystectomies).

The vast majority of gall bladder operations are successful without complications. However, in some instances the complications following gallbladder surgery can be severe. In these cases it is wise to seek the advice of a qualified and specialist medical negligence solicitor to help you secure gallbladder removal compensation.

"She is very organised and knows how to approach a clinical negligence case from start to finish. She also has a good rapport with clients."

Chambers UK

Gallbladder surgical negligence

Gallbladder removal surgery is considered a fairly safe procedure, the majority of patients return home within 24 hours with no complications. As with all operations there are risks, the consequences of which can be severe in some cases.

Bile leakage

In around 1% of gall bladder surgeries bile leakage occurs. When the gallbladder is removed the surgeon uses clips to seal the tubes that connect the main duct to the gallbladder. On occasions there can be leaks if the clips haven’t been correctly fitted, this causes bile to leak into the abdomen once the gallbladder is removed.

This can be very painful and if undetected can cause severe issues long term. Symptoms include stomach pains, sickness, a swollen stomach and a fever. In these cases it is sometimes necessary to have further surgery to drain the bile from the stomach.

"Jeanette Whyman is a well-established figure in the clinical negligence field"

Chambers UK

Bile duct injuries

Bile duct injuries are one of the more common complications to this surgery affecting 1 in 500 cases. In cases where the injury is immediately noticed it can be corrected and repaired at the time. In other cases further surgery will be required after your operation. Left untreated bile can leak into the abdomen and cause pain and severe complications.

This is considered one of the most common mistakes, during surgery the common bile duct is cut or clipped rather than the cystic duct, this is called an iatrogenic injury. This type of injury often needs complicated and extensive corrective surgery. Corrective surgery comes with its own complications and in a very small percentage of cases people have died due to liver failure. We have seen an increase in people seeking compensation for bile duct surgery. 

Injuries to the bowel, intestines and blood vessels

In 1 in 1000 cases other injuries occur as a result of gallbladder surgery, these are usually caused by the instruments used to removed the gall bladder which can damage the surrounding organs and blood vessels. Again, these are usually repaired during the initial operation. If they are missed they can cause issues and require further surgery.


There is a risk of infection with any surgery. In the case of gallbladder surgery people can develop either internal or wound infections. These should be picked up before you leave hospital, the symptoms can include pain, redness and swelling and a leakage from the wound.


Internal bleeding may occur after surgery, if this is missed it can be serious. It will need further surgery to stop the bleeding.

No win no fee claims

The main concern for many of our clients is how to fund their compensation claim. The majority of our cases are taken on a no win no fee basis meaning there is no financial risk to you. There are other funding options available to you which we can discuss as part of our initial consultation. 

Compensation amounts

The first question we are usually asked by clients is the value of them claim. In cases of gallbladder surgery this can vary greatly depending on the actual injury and the long term issues this may cause. 

Our compensation calculator will offer you some guidance but we will be able to give you a more accurate figure once we have looked at the specifics of your individual case. 

Your claim will be assessed in two parts, general damages which relate to pain and suffering and special damages which assess financial loss such as loss of earnings and the cost of any care.

How can we help?
01926 732512