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February 1956

Evaluation of Cholecystostomy

Author Affiliations

New Britain, Conn.
Chief Surgeon and Chief of Staff (Dr. Clark), and Senior Attending Surgeon (Dr. Livingston) New Britain General Hospital.

AMA Arch Surg. 1956;72(2):218-223. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1956.01270200034007

Cholecystostomy is a valuable surgical procedure employed by every surgeon. However, the indications for its use and the postoperative management of these patients are not generally agreed upon.* This disagreement may be concisely stated as follows:

(a) "All cholecystostomies, where possible, should be followed by a cholecystectomy."

(b) "Seventy per cent of cholecystostomy patients will remain symptom-free and require no further surgery."

These two points of view are obviously markedly divergent. The study here presented was prompted by two considerations: (1) an unusual opportunity to study a large series of cholecystostomies, and (2) a desire to evaluate this disagreement with the hope that some contribution to the problem will be made.

BRIEF HISTORICAL REVIEW  Apparently the first cholecystostomy was performed by Jean-Louis Petit in 1743. He carefully planned the operation, removed stones from the gall bladder, and drained it, but the patient died. Bobbs, in 1867, an American, did the