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Gallstones: Symptoms, Causes & Treatment with Medication

02 March, 2021 Ananya Das

Gall bladder is an essential organ that forms a part of human digestive system. This organ is located in the upper abdomen of our body just below the liver and does the essential work of storing a digestive juice called bile. Bile juice is released by the liver and is useful in breaking down the fats that we consume into fatty acids. But when too much cholesterol is present in the bile then this leads to the development of stones in the gall bladder which are called gallstones.

Symptoms and Warning Signs:

Following are the major warning signs that may alert you about the presence of stones in your gall bladder.

  • Pain in the upper right abdomen
  • Frequent pain after eating high fat or oily food
  • Indigestion
  • Dark urination or stool passage
  • Nausea and vomiting any time
  • Constipation, burping and diarrhea


All these following symptoms are known as Biliary Colic.

Usually pain is associated with gallstones which don’t naturally last long but some cases are also found where the patient won’t experience any pain despite of their presence. This kind of gallstones is called silent gallstones and pain is only experienced in this case when the stones change their position and block the release of bile juice.

Causes:

The exact cause of the development of gallstones is not known but following are some of the found causes which can lead to its development.

1. High cholesterol content in bile juice: If the liver develops cholesterol which is more than the amount that your bile can digest then it leads to the development of hard, yellow stones in the bladder.

2. Concentrated bile juice: Gallbladder does the work of storing the bile juice which after every use needs to be empty but if for any reason the bladder fails to vacant itself then the bile becomes highly concentrated with time and leads to development of gallstones.

Risk factors:

Apart from these causes there are also some factors which increase the risk of formation of gallstones. Some of which includes:

1. Lifestyle factors: If you have habit of eating high fat and cholesterol diet with low fiber content then this can lead to make you obese which eventually increase the chance of forming stones in your bladder.

2. Health issue: If you are already suffering from diabetes and are over the age of 50 then the risk of gallbladder stone development is high for you.

3. Family history: If someone from your family is already a patient of gallstones then there are chances for you to also develop them.

4. Medication: In of certain medicines which lowers the cholesterol content of the body or which is high in estrogen content, then your chances of forming gallstones is high.

5. Gender: Females are at high risk of forming gallstones and one major reason behind this lie in the tendency of being pregnant.

Prevention:

Gallstones development highly depends on your food habits. So here we have listed down for you some of the preventive measures that may help you reduce the risk of its development.

  • Avoid eating high fat, high cholesterol, oily and sweet food.
  • Avoid the intake of caffeinated drinks and high fat dairy products.
  • Eat meals in small proportion to help body digest them easily.
  • Eat fiber rich diet.
  • Drink plenty of water.


Diagnosis:

If you are on doubt of having bladder stones then to confirm your situation you may be advised by your doctor to perform any of these following physical tests.

  • Blood tests
  • Ultrasound
  • CT Scan
  • MRCP
  • Cholescintigraphy
  • Endoscopic ultrasound


Different procedures are followed to conduct these tests but finally the presence of gallstones if there is detected by conducting any of these.

Treatment:

Usually if the gallstones in your body don’t show up any symptoms then there is no requirement of treatment faced. But with major health complications and pain the patient need to get the stones out of their body either via surgery or other non-surgical means. Treatment ways commonly employed for treatment of gallstones are as follows.

1. Surgery:

  • Laparoscopic Cholecystectomy: This is the most common surgical method used by doctors to remove gallstones where a narrow tube called laparoscope is passed into your belly via a small cut. This laparoscope is an instrument which holds light, camera and instruments. Another cut is made at any other part of the abdomen from which the gallbladder is removed.
  • Open Cholecystectomy: In this process doctor makes a bigger cut in your abdomen and via that path your gall bladder is removed. After this you are kept under observation for a few days.


2. Non-surgical:

  • ERCP: If the stones are present in your bile duct then ERCP is used to remove them before conducting surgery.
  • Medication: If you are suffering from any other health issue as well then you may be kept at medication which will help to dissolve the cholesterol stones. Some of these medicines include Chenodiol and Ursodiol like Chenodol, Actigall, Urso 250, Urso Forte, etc. all these medicines’ intake may cause mild diarrhea.


All these above mentioned medicines can be found available readily on online pharmacies with handsome discounts. You can easily buy from the websites of those pharmacies.

Conclusion:
Gallstones’ development highly depends on your existing lifestyle and diet so be careful while filling your plate before sitting to eat. If you experience any of the above symptoms then immediately contact your doctor and get your treatment started at the earliest so as to avoid any kind of future complications.

 

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