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Is surgery for gallstones necessary?

Q: My father is 70 years old. The ultrasound report shows inactive stone dust particles. Some times he gets mild pain in the stomach and he complains of bitter taste in his mouth. Is it because of these stones? He is taking some ayurvedic medicines to control acidity and a syrup for the liver. His BP is normal and he has no sugar problem. He is taking normal home made food. Is removal of gallbladder the only remedy or can we avoid operation by taking some medicines? Because of his old age he wants to avoid surgery. If it can be cured by medicines, kindly prescribe the same.

A:From your description I understand that your father has gallstones. If he has pain, the pain has a better than 95% chance of being relieved by surgery. If he is relatively fit for surgery, he should have his gall bladder removed. The age is not a bar, and your physician will tell you about his fitness. There is a 5% chance that Ayurvedic medicines will remove his gallstones. I cannot personally recommend Ayurvedic therapy, but you are free to try.

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