The gallbladder is a small organ that stores a substance called bile. Bile helps to digest food. When a person falls out of homeostasis their gallbladder can begin to malfunction. Oftentimes this results in the development of small crystallizations known as gallstones.
Gallstones are incredibly painful and more often than not a person who suffers from gallstones will need surgery to remove the gallbladder and prevent future occurrences.
Did you know?
About 80% of people who suffer from gallstones will need surgery to remedy the situation. This is an extremely common surgery that has a high success rate.
Frequently Asked Questions
How will I know if I need surgery?
Only your doctor can determine if you need surgery. However, if your gallstones are present but not causing problems you likely do not need surgery.
Surgery is used when a gallstone ends up blocking one of the ducts in your gallbladder. This is an extremely painful situation that many patients describe as “stabbing” and “knife-like”. If left untreated this can result in an inflamed gallbladder, inflamed pancreas, and inflamed bile ducts.
What sort of tests are needed to confirm surgery as an option?
The doctor will likely run several tests to confirm their suspicion of whether this is truly a gallbladder issue or not.
One of the most common is the use of ultrasound, which provides a visualization of the gallbladder. It allows the doctor to see whether your gallbladder ducts are truly blocked and where the blockage is. Other imaging options include an endoscopy, which uses a camera to go down your esophagus to view what is happening. This requires you to be under general anesthesia.
Can I manage my gallbladder problems with diet?
It’s often recommended that patients who suffer from gallbladder problems cut back on fat in their diets. This can help prevent reoccurrences, but is not always effective. The good news is that you can live without your gallbladder because the liver produces plenty of bile by itself.