Gall Bladder Stones
Gall Bladder is a 3 to 4-inch, pear-shaped, bluish-green sac hanging from the underside of the liver. The liver cleans the blood of toxins and packages them along with cholesterol, bile salts, lecithin and other substances in a digestive mixture known as bile. The bile first goes to the gull bladder where it is concentrated and stored until food arrives in the duodenum. When food is pushed into the duodenum from the stomach, the bile is excreted from the gull bladder, through the bile duct, into the intestines and eventually exits the body within the feces.
What is Gall Bladder?
Gall bladder is a part of the digestive system in our body. It stores Bile which is a juice produced by the liver and used for digestion of fat content in our diet. When food reaches the beginning of small intestine gall bladder ejects bile by its forceful contraction.
How do stones form in it?
It is generally accepted now that the stones form in gall bladder when the contraction becomes ineffective or irregular. Some of the constituents of bile get crystallized and result in stone formation. Eating habits or content of diet has no bearing on stone formation in gall bladder. These stones can form at any age and in either sex.
What are the symptoms of gall bladder stones?
Severe pain in the upper abdomen is the most commonly accepted symptom. It is seen that many patients do not have the typical pain at all the times. Very commonly one also suffers from indigestion, usually described as acidity in common language. These symptoms tend to be more pronounced especially after fried and heavy food. Very seldom one may come across a gall bladder stone without any clear cut symptoms as well.
How to manage this problem?
Surgical removal of Gall Badder is the only effective management of this problem. These days key hole surgery or Laparoscopic Surgery has become the gold standard for treatment of gall bladder stones. It is a short stay procedure and post operative recovery and cosmetic results are also more acceptable.
Are there any changes in one’s life style after Gall Bladder removal?
One can return to normal level of physical activity and diet within a couple of days. We usually recommend restricted consumption of red meat in the immediate postoperative period.
What happens if I postpone the operation or do not get it done?
A large number of complications can arise form untreated gall bladder stones. They vary from pus formation in the gall bladder to jaundice and fever due to stones slipping into the bile duct, gall bladder perforation and even cancer of the gall bladder. These complications are more severe in diabetic patients.