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