- by Bangalore Baptist Hospital
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- Apr 18 2018
What are Gallstones?
It is defined as the pieces of solid material not really stones that form in the gallbladder, a small organ located under the liver in the upper right abdomen which stores bile, a green-yellow liquid that helps with digestion. Gallstones are usually made of cholesterol that form in the gallbladder.
The exact cause is not known, but there are some theories:
- Too much cholesterol in bile can lead to yellow cholesterol stones.
- Too much bilirubin can cause pigment gallstones.
People are at risk of getting gallstones if:
- They are obese
- They have diabetes
- Lose weight too quickly
- Pain in upper right abdomen
- Dark urine
- Clay-colored stools
- Stomach pain
- Physical examination such as checking eyes and skin for visible changes in color.
- Abdominal CT scan
- Gallbladder radionuclide scan
- Blood tests
- Endoscopic Retrograde Cholangiopancreatography (ERCP)
- Cholescintigraphy (HIDA scan)
- Magnetic Resonance Cholangiopancreatography (MRCP)
Treatment is not necessary unless it causes you pain. Sometimes you can pass gallstones without even noticing. If it is causing pain then the doctor will recommend surgery.
Laparoscopic cholecystectomy: The surgeon passes instruments, a light, and a camera through several small cuts in the belly.
Open Cholecystectomy: The surgeon makes bigger cuts in the belly to remove the gallbladder.
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