The Gallbladder is usually removed Laparoscopically If necessary-usually requiring no hospital stay. But people don't just get it removed for no reason, it stores bile which helps break down fats once they reach the small intestine. It's true that you can live without your gallbladder so it is safe to get it removed if needed. Lithotripsy (shock waves which break up the stones and allow you to pass them more easily in your urine) is used to remove kidney stones and thus saves your kidneys obviously, but that procedure isn't used for Gallstones so the gallbadder is just simply taken out. The four F's are a good indicator if someone comes into the ER with upper abdominal/right sided pain that they may have gallstones: Female, Fat, Forties, Fertile.