Gallbladder contusion after blunt abdominal trauma is a rare event that presents with diagnostic challenges. There is no clear evidence supporting conservative or surgical management of gallbladder contusion injuries, especially when they present in isolation. Here, we report the first case of an isolated gallbladder contusion injury after blunt abdominal trauma resulting in hemorrhagic cholecystitis that was successfully managed non-operatively.
A 22-year-old male patient presented with a 3-day history of severe right upper quadrant pain, leukocytosis, and elevated bilirubin after suffering blunt abdominal trauma from being kicked in the abdomen during a soccer game. The patient was evaluated using computed tomography (CT), ultrasound (US), and magnetic resonance cholangiopancreatography (MRCP). His imaging findings were consistent with cholecystitis without cholelithiasis. His bloodwork and imaging were initially concerning for choledocholithiasis, but were later determined to be blood products within the common bile duct (CBD). Through conservative management, which included antibiotics, bed rest, and bowel rest, he had complete resolution of symptoms and normalization of bloodwork after four days of admission and remained symptom free at 1-year.
This case serves to highlight isolated gallbladder contusion as a potential outcome of blunt abdominal trauma. We re-affirm the diagnostic inconsistencies between CT and US in the work-up of cholecystitis and other biliary pathology. Furthermore, we describe the role of non-operative management in the treatment of traumatic cholecystitis, in the absence of gallstones.
Gallbladder contusion and hemorrhagic cholecystitis after blunt abdominal trauma can be managed with non-operative interventions.

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