Sixty consecutive patients underwent an elective attempt at laparoscopic cholecystectomy between March 15 and July 31, 1990 at the Mount Sinai Hospital in New York. Fifty-two patients had successful completion of the laparoscopic cholecystectomy (87%). The reasons for conversion to open cholecystectomy were acute cholecystitis (four patients), inability to define the cystic duct-common duct junction (three patients), and one patient with an unexpected choledochal cyst variant. Forty patients (77%) were discharged on the first post-operative day, and the remaining 12 patients on the second post-operative day. Thirty-three patients (63%) required only oral pain medication, and 11 patients (21%) needed no pain medication post-operatively. Fifty-one patients (98%) had resumed normal activities by the seventh post-operative day. Cholecystectomy remains the treatment of choice for biliary colic. Laparoscopic cholecystectomy minimizes length of stay in the hospital, lessens post-operative pain, allows quicker return to normal activities, and has a superior cosmetic result.