Hair Loss After Gallbladder Removal? (We Have the Answer!)

hair loss after gallbladder removal

Have you recently had your gallbladder removed and now find yourself struggling with the frustrating symptom of hair loss?  You’re not alone; many people that get their gallbladder removed experience this and it is viewed as completely normal after surgery.

Losing your hair after a surgery is considered a normal process post-surgery.  This is caused by telogen effluvium (TE) which is triggered by the disruption of hair follicle cycling.  Additionally, since the gallbladder is responsible for processing fat you may see a decline in vitamin absorption which acts to keep your hair healthy.

This article will explain why your hair may fall out after the removal of your gallbladder, if your hormones will be affected, and how your body changes after its removal.

Why Does Hair Fall Out After Gallbladder Removal?

Nutritional Deficiency

Since the gallbladder is responsible for breaking down fats, it is also responsible for providing the body with key nutrients to the body by making bile, an acidic liquid that mixes with stomach juices to help break down food in the stomach.  Without bile, it may be more difficult for your body to break down food, thereby limiting the nutrition you receive during meals.

The body relies on healthy fats such as good cholesterol to help it maintain healthy, supple skin.  Skin cells that are healthy are able to facilitate healthy hair that holds strong to the follicle (the area of the skin which holds each strand of hair).  When the gallbladder is removed, the good cholesterol deposited into skin cells can become lessened.  

Hormonal Imbalances

Hormones also play a large part in hair growth cycles.  Hormones such as HGH (human growth hormone), estrogen and cortisol can all influence hair growth.  If HGH and estrogen rise in the body, the hair follicle cycle will be accelerated and hair growth will increase.  However, when cortisol is produced in higher amounts, the cycle will slow.

TE (Telogen Effluvium)

Telogen effluvium is a side effect that causes hair loss and can occur after surgery which can last anywhere from three to six months.  This is because the body has experienced a very traumatic event (such as surgery) that causes cortisol levels to rise exponentially, thereby not only reducing the amount of hair that will grow but disrupting the hair follicle cycle.

Will My Body Change After Gallbladder Removal?

Everyone’s body is different, so it’s hard to say exactly how your body will respond once you have surgery.  Your body is likely going to experience some sort of physical changes as surgery itself can be stressful, let alone adapting to the big change of living sans gallbladder.  

Since this organ is responsible for the digestion of food, you may likely experience some changes in your body.  Some of those changes may be a decrease in a particular vitamin in your blood, weight loss (due to the lessened ability to digest fats), hair loss (as mentioned earlier) and other changes such as an influx of certain hormones such as cortisol.

Does Removing The Gallbladder Affect Hormones?

The removal of your gallbladder may affect some of your hormones by causing an excess in hormones such as estrogen.  This is due to the fact that the gallbladder digests fats and the estrogen molecule likes to store itself inside adipose (fat) tissue.

Continuing Effects After Removal Of The Gallbladder

Most commonly, there aren’t any continuing effects from the gallbladder being removed.  Some that are more rare include: 


Although the removal of the gallbladder is considered a more major surgery, millions of people have this procedure performed each year and go on to live fully functional, healthy and happy lives.  The severity of your symptoms post-removal entirely depends upon your body’s composition and lifestyle.

Your gallbladder can affect a lot of different processes in the body because of its job of assisting in digestion and it can influence nutrition and vitamin levels, thereby influencing hair loss.  Additionally, gallbladder surgery can be a stressful event for your body which can spike cortisol levels, leading to more hair loss.

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