Doctors in the nation’s capital report success from surgery today to remove the gall bladder of Attorney General John Ashcroft, who was hospitalized last week suffering pancreatitis. University of Iowa endocrinology professor Robert Bar says the medical procedure is one that shouldn’t cause lasting serious consequences. There’s no major side effects, he says, if you have your gallbladder taken out. Doctors today reported they were able to use a very small incision to perform the operation on the nation’s attorney general. Dr. Barr works at the veterans hospital in Iowa City, and says that development has been a good one for patients. The most common way is laparoscopy, easier on the patient and taking far less time for recovery. The surgery was done because doctors found a gallstone was blocking a pancreatic duct, which caused the painful attack that hospitalized the nation’s top prosecutor several days ago. The inflammation known as acute pancreatitis can have consequences as serious as making the patient diabetic, if the organ is badly damaged by the attack. You can lose 85-90 percent of the pancreas and still have enough cells to produce insulin, enough to keep your blood-sugar well enough under control that you don’t have to take insulin. Gallstones are considered a common medical problem worldwide and doctors say two-thirds of people who have them have no symptoms at all.