Some people develop diarrhoea after gallbladder surgery and in this project we aim to find out why this happens and whether we
can predict it.

Why investigate bile acid diarrhoea?

While this is a common problem there has been no research into why it happens after gallbladder surgery, and often patients are not diagnosed quickly. This leads to problems with people not wanting to leave their house, affecting their work and their relationships with family and friends.

How will the study work?

60 patients recruited from University Hospitals of Coventry and Warwick will answer a questionnaire and have blood and stool samples taken for analysis before the surgery and 3 months after. A piece of gallbladder will also be taken for analysis.

The analysis will be compared to patients having keyhole surgery without removal of the gallbladder. If they have developed diarrhoea (3 or more times a day for more than four weeks) we will refer them for testing for bile acid diarrhoea, which will involve a scan, done with a special type of camera, and a camera test of the colon.

What will a successful outcome mean?

We hope to determine how many patients get diarrhoea and why. This would enable measures to be put in place to support patients, and potentially help research teams investigate preventative measures in future.

The research team

This project will be delivered at University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire by a team led by Professor Ramesh Arasaradnam.