• Bile Duct Cancer Treatments

    Bile duct cancer is the uncontrolled growth of cells in the bile duct. The main function of the bile duct is the passage of bile from the liver and gallbladder to the small intestine, where it helps in fat digestion.

    Symptoms of Bile Duct Cancer

    Bile duct cancer usually does not cause any major symptoms in the initial stages, but sometimes some of the following symptoms may appear sooner and lead to an early diagnosis:

    • Jaundice or yellowing of the skin and eyes

    • Itching all over the skin

    • Light-colored/greasy stools

    • Dark urine

    • Abdominal (belly) pain

    • Loss of appetite/weight loss

    • Fever

    • Nausea and vomiting

    Diagnosis of Bile Duct Cancer

    The bile ducts are deep inside the body and its cancer can’t be seen or felt during routine physical exams. They are generally found only after the cancer has grown enough to cause signs or symptoms. The tests that may help in the diagnosis of Bile duct cancer include the following:

    • Ultrasound scan

    • Computerised tomography (CT) scan

    • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans

    • ERCP test

    • Percutaneous trans hepatic cholangiography (PTC)

    Laparoscopic Surgery for Bile Duct Cancer

    Laparoscopic surgery is sometimes performed in bile duct cancer patients to remove bile duct.

    The procedure is performed under general anaesthesia. The surgeon makes about 3-4 small incisions in the abdomen. One of the incisions is used to insert a port (nozzle) that fills the carbon dioxide gas into the abdomen to inflate it. Now laparoscope is inserted through another incision. A laparoscope is a telescope lookalike with a light and camera on the end. It allows the surgeon to clearly view inside of the abdomen on the monitor outside. Other surgical instruments are inserted through rest of the incisions to remove bile duct. The specimen is removed in a plastic bag from the abdomen by enlarging one of the small incisions. After completing the procedure, the carbon dioxide gas is released out, and incisions are closed with sutures or staples, or covered with glue-like bandage.  

    Advantages of Laparoscopic Bile duct Surgery

    • Faster recovery

    • Minimal blood loss

    • Only few hours or overnight hospitalization

    • Sooner return to work

    • Very less pain during and after the procedure

    • Smaller incisions without any cut on abdominal muscles

    • Negligible risks and complications

    • Less chances of wound infection

    • High success rate