Biliary Calculus – What it is, Causes, Symptoms and Treatments!

Biliary Calculus – What it is, Causes, Symptoms and Treatments of this condition. Also,  Gallstone  is the deposit of crystals in the gallbladder . Your gallbladder is a small organ below your liver in your upper right abdomen. It is a bag that stores bile, a green-yellow liquid that aids in digestion . Most cases of  gallstones  form when there is too much cholesterol in the bile.

Biliary Calculation

Causes of Gallstones:  80 percent of gallstones  are made from cholesterol. The other 20 percent of stones are made up of calcium salts and bilirubin. It is not known exactly what causes  gallstones to form, although there are some theories.

Too Much Cholesterol in Your Bile: Having high cholesterol in your bile can lead to Gallstones . These hard stones can develop if the liver produces more cholesterol than bile can dissolve.

Large amounts of Bilirubin in Bile: Bilirubin is a chemical produced when the liver destroys old red blood cells. Some problems, such as liver damage and certain blood disorders, cause the liver to produce more bilirubin than it should. Gallstones form  when your gallbladder cannot break down excess bilirubin. These hard stones are often dark brown or black.

Concentrated Bile Due to a Complete Gallbladder: The gallbladder needs to empty bile in order to become healthy and function properly. If you cannot empty the contents of the bile, the bile becomes excessively concentrated, which causes stones to form.

Gallstone Symptoms: Gallstone can lead to pain in the upper right abdomen. You may start having gallbladder pain from time to time when consuming high-fat foods such as fried foods. The pain usually doesn’t last more than a few hours.
You can also try:

  • Nausea
  • vomit
  • dark urine
  • Clay colored stools
  • Stomachache
  • Diarrhea
  • Indigestion
  • These symptoms are also known as biliary colic.
  • Asymptomatic calculations

Gallstone itself  does not cause pain. On the contrary, pain occurs when Gallstone blocks the movement of bile from the gallbladder . Eighty percent of people have “ Silent Gallstones ”. This means they do not experience pain or have symptoms. In these cases, the doctor may discover the gallstone  through X-rays or during surgery on the abdomen.

Gallstone Complications:  When a gallstone blocks the duct where bile moves from the gallbladder , it can cause inflammation and infection in the gallbladder . This is known as acute cholecystitis. It’s a medical emergency. The risk of developing acute cholecystitis from symptomatic stones is 1 to 3 percent. Symptoms associated with acute cholecystitis include:

  • Severe pain in the upper part of the stomach
  • Fever
  • Goosebumps
  • loss of appetite
  • nausea and vomiting

See a doctor right away if these symptoms last longer than 1 to 2 hours or if you have a fever.

Other Complications: Untreated gallstones  can cause complications such as:

  • Jaundice, a yellowish tint to your skin or eyes
  • Cholecystitis,  vesicular infection
  • Cholangitis,  bile duct infection
  • Sepsis, an infection  in the blood
  • pancreas inflammation
  • gallbladder cancer

Gallstone Diagnosis: The doctor will perform a physical exam that includes observation of the eyes and skin for visible changes in color. A yellowish tint can be a sign of jaundice, a result of too much bilirubin in your body.

The examination may involve the use of diagnostic tests that help the doctor look inside the body. These tests include:
Ultrasound: An ultrasound produces images of your abdomen. It is the imaging method preferred by doctors to confirm if you have gallstone disease . It may also show abnormalities associated with acute cholecystitis.

Abdominal CT Scan: This imaging test takes pictures of the liver and abdominal region.

Gallbladder Radionuclide Scan: This important scan takes approximately one hour to complete. A specialist injects a radioactive substance into your veins. The substance travels through your blood to the liver and gallbladder . On a scan, it may reveal evidence that suggests infection  or blockage of the bile ducts caused by stones.

Blood Tests: Your doctor may order blood tests that measure the amount of bilirubin in your blood. The tests also help in determining the health of the liver.
Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP): ERCP is a procedure that uses a camera and X-rays to look at problems in the bile and pancreatic ducts. This helps the doctor look for gallstones stuck in your bile duct.Gallstone Treatments: Most of the time, you will not need gallstone treatment unless it causes pain. Sometimes many people have gallstones and don’t know it. If you are in pain, your doctor will likely recommend surgery. In rare cases, medications may be used.
If you have a high risk of surgical complications, a drainage tube can be placed into the gallbladder through the skin. Your surgery may be delayed until the risk is reduced by treating your other medical problems.

Natural Treatment and Home Remedies: If you have gallstones and have no symptoms, you can make certain lifestyle changes. Some nutritional supplements you can take include vitamin C, iron, and lecithin. One study found that vitamin C and lecithin can lower the risk of gallstones. Talk to your doctor about the proper dosage of these supplements.

Some people recommend a gallbladder flush , which involves fasting and then taking olive oil and lemon juice to aid in the passage of gallstones . There is no evidence that this works, and it can even cause gallstones to become stuck in the bile duct.

Surgery: The doctor may need a laparoscopic gallbladder removal . This is a common surgery that requires general anesthesia. The surgeon usually makes 3 or 4 incisions in your abdomen. They will then insert a small lighted device into one of the incisions and carefully remove the gallbladder .
You will usually go home the day of the procedure or the next day if you have no complications.

You may experience loose or watery stools after your gallbladder is removed . Removing a gallbladder involves rerouting bile from the liver to the small intestine. Bile no longer passes through the gallbladder and becomes less concentrated. The result is a laxative effect that causes  diarrhea

. To treat this, eat a low-fat diet so that you release less bile.

Non-Surgical Treatments: Medication is generally no longer used as laparoscopic and robotic techniques make surgery much less risky than it used to be. However, if you cannot operate, you can take ursodiol to dissolve gallstones caused  by cholesterol. You will need to take this medication 2 to 4 times a day.

Useful links: 

Medications can take several years to clear gallstones , and gallstones  can form again if you stop treatment. Shock wave lithotripsy is another option. A lithotripter is a machine that generates shock waves that pass through a person. These shock waves can break the Gallstones  into smaller pieces.

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