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Surgeon issues warning as he removes record number of gallstones from patient

Aug 21. 2019
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By Kamthorn Kongsombat
The Nation

Citing a patient who had as many 1,898 gallstones removed recently at Tha Bo Crown Prince Hospital in Nong Khai’s Tha Bo district, hospital director Dr Wattana Pareesri pointed out on August 21 that up to 10 per cent of the population in the Northeast suffer from gallstones.

Hence, he said, the general public should undergo yearly check-ups, including ultrasound tests of the abdomen. He also said that those suffering from chronic stomach ache or flatulence, especially after consuming protein or fatty food, should immediately have their abdomen checked for gallstones. 

Wattana said his hospital provides laparoscopic surgery to some 1,200 patients every year, and the latest removal of 1,898 gallstones was the highest number removed in a single person since he began working as a surgeon 25 years ago. Before this, the highest number of gallstones were recorded at 920 in 2009 and 495 in 2006. 

Gallstones – hardened deposits of digestive fluid formed in the gallbladder that are suspected to stem from high cholesterol, high calcium or cholecystitis – are mostly found among people above the age of 40. The incidence of gallstones is two to three times higher in women, and those most at risk are people with high cholesterol, diabetes or Thalassemia.

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