Things to know about gallbladder

All About Your Gall Bladder: Functions, Diseases, Prevention, And Treatments

According to reports, there is a very high prevalence of Empyema of Gallbladder in Indians. Furthermore, Indians have increased chances of contracting Cholelithiasis and Cholecystitis.

Empyema of the Gallbladder occurs when the cystic duct is obstructed by a malignant mass like a Cholangiocarcinoma, resulting in the build-up of infected fluid. They generally occur with recurrent hiccups and then develop in the presence of bacteria that contain bile. Then they can evolve into suppurative infection which causes the gallbladder to fill with purulent material, termed empyema of gallbladder.

If detected early on time, they can be successfully treated by Percutaneous Transhepatic Tholecystoduodenal Self-Expandable Covered Metal Stent (SECMS) insertion, at the best gastroenterology hospital in Bangalore, M H Surgery. ELSE, the doctor at the best hospital for gallbladder stone surgery in Bangalore, M H Surgery may recommend a mix of systemic antibiotics and urgent drainage or resection. This will help to reduce complications of empyema and also avoid or treat associated sepsis.


Also called Chioecyst, Gallbladder is a hollow and small organ situated below the right lobe of the liver, in the digestive system. Measuring approximately 7-10 cm in length and 4 cm in diameter when fully bloated, it is bluish-grey in color.



  • Stores bile produced by the liver in its pouch after it flows through the small vessels. Later it sends it to the small intestine to help break down food.
  • Contracts rhythmically in response to signals, when food containing cholesterol and fats is eaten.
  • Concentrates the bile 3-10 times through the removal of some amount of electrolytes and water.
  • Releases gallbladder juice into the small intestine through a series of tubes (or pipes) called ducts.

Gallbladder Disease

Gallbladder disease indicates a health condition that primarily affects the health of the gallbladder.

The disease starts in the gallbladder or in the bile ducts that are connected to the gallbladder. In the event of any infection or blockage in the ducts, they can affect the gallbladder. Furthermore, as the bile ducts connect the gallbladder to other organs in the digestive system, they can affect them as well.

Diseases Of Gallbladder

There are several types of Gallbladder diseases. They include


Also called Cholelithiasis, Gallstones are regarded as the most common cause of gallbladder health problems.

They occur when there is an accumulation of excess bile products, that’s usually cholesterol in the gallbladder, into lumps.  This can continue to grow and add to the accumulation if preventive action is not initiated.

Gallstones can happen without symptoms. However, they can form and get trapped in an opening or duct inside the gallbladder. This will cause sudden pain in the abdomen, especially in the region between the belly button just below the right ribs, and rib cage. If not treated on time, the pain can spread to the shoulder blade or its sides.

There are some symptoms like

  • Abdominal pain can last for several hours.
  • Heavy Sweating.
  • Itchy Skin.
  • Yellow tinge to the skin; and white in the eyes.
  • Fever with chills.
  • Dark-colored urine or pale stools.
  • Nausea, vomiting, and loss of appetite.
  • Contractions when the gallbladder tries to expel a gallstone.

Aside from the above, eating foods that contain a lot of fat also causes gallbladder issues. They can trigger discomfort called biliary colic.  Finally, a person experiencing pain must see a doctor else complications can lead to severe health issues and turn fatal later on.

This means you can have gallstones without knowing that they are already present in your system. Either way, they can cause problems when they block the normal flow of bile in the bile ducts or gallbladder.

Gallbladder Cancer

Also called Cancer of the Gallbladder or Bile Ducts, Gallbladder cancer is rare, but when it happens it can be extremely serious.

Like Gallstones, the symptoms of Gallbladder Cancer too will not be visible until the very late stages. Additionally, most types of gallbladder polyps (called as tumors or growths) are harmless, but if they are larger than the average size then they need to be removed else they can turn lethal which can eventually prove to be fatal resulting in death.

If gallbladder cancer is diagnosed in its early stages like all other forms of cancer, it can be prevented from proceeding further and can even be cured. But the problem is in most cases it cannot be diagnosed properly as it will not be visible from the start.

Early diagnosis can be successful if the symptoms are detected promptly. These symptoms include abdominal pain and bloating; loss of appetite and sudden loss of weight; high body temperature; white eyes called jaundice and yellow fever; and a lump in the belly.


It refers to the disease of the Bile Ducts that begins typically with the inflammation of the bile ducts resulting from a temporary infection; or blockage; or a progressive autoimmune disorder like primary biliary cholangitis which can lead to the narrowing and scarring of the bile ducts (biliary structure). This can eventually compel the bile to back up in the gallbladder and liver.

Gangreous Cholecystitis

Most commonly prevalent among diabetics and patients who delay consulting a medical specialist for treatment, it results from severe abdominal pain. If left untreated, it can lead to the death of the tissue in the gallbladder and even cause the gallbladder to burst.

Gallbladder Empyema

A severe form of Cholecystitis, it results from the accumulation of pus in the gallbladder.

Its symptoms range from right-side abdominal pain to chills, and fever. If left uncared for and untreated, it can turn lethal leading to death. Hence, it must be immediately treated, when pus in gallbladder forms.

Gallstone Pancreatitis

It refers to a Gallbladder disease where gallstones form in the gallbladder in a way that will block the pancreatic duct, resulting in the inflammation of pancreatitis culminating in severe pain.

The cause for this is the gallbladder stone which travels from the gallbladder. Then there it blocks the opening to the first part of the small intestine (called the duodenum). This causes a backup of fluid that is capable of traveling up the bile duct as well as the pancreatic duct.

Common symptoms of this disease include chills, fever, nausea, jaundice, pain in the upper left abdomen, and vomiting. In case, the symptoms are mild, the problem can be treated by just avoiding eating and drinking for a specific number of days as advised by the doctor.

On the other hand, in more severe cases, surgery needs to be done to remove the gallstones else it can prove to be lethal later resulting in even death. To prevent the issue from snowballing into a severe form, it is better to take preventive steps like a diagnosis with the help of blood tests or varied types of body scans like CT Scans or MRIs, or Ultrasounds.


Termed as one of the more serious complications of Chronic Cholecystitis, it results in sustained swelling and distension of the gallbladder caused by chronic inflammation of the gallbladder. This can eventually lead to what’s called as ‘Tissue Death’.

If these tissue deaths are left to fester, they can burst or tear. Any tear or burst in the gallbladder wall can risk exposing the rest of the abdominal cavity to an infection called as Peritonitis.

Chronic Cholecystitis

It occurs as a result of inflammation in the gallbladder that festers for the long-term. This results in gallbladder not draining properly.

The cause of this problem can be attributed to gallbladders blocking a duct; or gallbladder not able to empty properly; or prevalence of high concentration of bile salt and calcium; or sickle cell anemia.

The symptoms of this gallbladder disease include continual occurrence of sudden inflammation; and sudden pain in the body. When compared to the pain caused by acute cholecystitis, the pain will be relatively milder; and also the person suffering from it will usually not be having a fever.

Acute Cholecystitis

It occurs as a result of the prevalence of gallstones; or other causes like after-effects of a major surgery; or after-effects of a critical illness; or infection or a weak immune system. In case, the inflammation turns severe, it can lead to the rupture of the gallbladder and the patient can become very ill.

The symptoms of this disease include sudden, intense pain which can last for six to twelve hours; or nausea and vomiting; or skin color turning into mild yellow; or swelling in the abdomen.

Symptoms Of Gallbladder Diseases

The symptoms of gallbladder disease can vary from person to person based on the type and condition of the disease. The most common symptom is pain in the upper abdominal area in the upper right area or middle area.

Other symptoms include Chills; Chest Pain; Clay-colored stool; Stomach fullness feeling; Heartburn or indigestion or excessive pain; Vomiting and Nausea; Jaundice – yellowing of the eyes and skin; Tender feeling in the abdomen, especially the right upper quadrant; and pain that stretches below the right shoulder blade or the back (worsens after eating a meal that contains fatty or greasy foods; or pain that increases when the patient breathes in deeply).


Treatment of gallbladder disease depends upon the type of gallbladder disease you have.

Gallbladder Surgery

There are different types of gallbladder surgery for different types of gallbladder diseases and issues.


Regarded as the most common surgical gallbladder surgery, it relates to gallstones in gallbladder resulting in severe pain; and facilitates its removal.

Aside from this, there are two popular surgeries that are performed to remove gallbladder.

  • LAPAROSCOPIC SURGERY: Considered to be the most preferred method of surgery, it involves several small incisions in the gallbladder through which a tiny video camera and surgical tools are inserted.
  • OPEN SURGERY: It involves a large incision in the gallbladder whose infection has become hard and needs to be immediately removed. This kind of situation generally occurs in five to ten percent of laparoscopic gallbladder surgeries. However, when the gallbladder disease becomes very severe, then an open surgery becomes inevitable.
  • MINIMALLY INVASIVE SURGERY: Also called as Laparoscopic Cholecystectomy, a Minimally Invasive Surgery is considered to be the most effective surgery for removing gallbladder. What makes it so is it uses small incisions which results in less pain, fewer post-operative complications, shorter hospital stay, and faster recovery time. Additionally, it is performed by only a highly experienced and well-trained surgical team; and the patient can return to normal life within months.  

Apart from the above two surgeries, there is Endoscopic Intervention.


Your gastroenterology doctor at the best hospital gallbladder stone surgery in Bangalore, M H Surgery, will perform endoscopic intervention to fix minor gallbladder issues with the help of an endoscope. If successfully done, then the doctor will resort to surgery.

 An endoscopic intervention involves an ERCP and/or EUS examination. This will help to detect the presence of any blockages or tumors or stones that could be causing problems. If detected, the doctor will either remove gallstones, or place stents to open-up bile ducts, or just take tissue samples required for biopsy, with the help of instruments on the end of the endoscope.


Appropriate medication as recommended by a gastroenterology specialist at the best gastroenterology hospital in Bangalore, MH Surgery, will help to reverse further growth of gallstones or occurrence of gallstones. But it is generally resorted to as a last option and that too when gallbladder surgery is not an option.

The medication in the form of a drug called ‘Ursodiol’, when taken helps to dissolve the cholesterol in gallstones slowly. However, it can take months to deliver positive results but can return back if the medication intake is stopped.

Pain medication is generally recommended by the doctor for acute cases of biliary colic or gallbladder attacks (they require a prescription pain medication to manage them), based on the patient’s medical history and symptoms of the disease.

Aside from medication, antibiotics are recommended if you have a gallbladder infection; but it will be taken only a precursor to a surgical treatment. Also, this must be strictly taken only if advised by the gastroenterology doctor at the best gastroenterology hospital in Bangalore, MH Surgery.

Other Therapies


When the gallbladder is removed, the body will no longer be in a position to store bile there. As a result of this, the liver will need to adapt to the release of bile into the small intestines directly. This will help to facilitate effective digestion.

They are recommended after a gallbladder surgery. To adapt to the new dietary changes, it is advisable to take hard-to-digest foods slowly; and also eat smaller meals at frequent intervals. They will help to reduce the small intestine’s demand for bile at any particular time.


  • If a gallstone is blocking your common bile duct, your doctor could recommend an Endoscopic Retrograde Cholangiopancreatography (ERCP). This will help to diagnose your gallbladder disease condition and based on findings, steps taken to treat it immediately.
  • If you are suffering from gallbladder cancer, in addition to having the gallbladder removed, the doctor will recommend additional treatments like chemotherapy or radiation therapy.

Prevention Of Gallbladder Diseases And Issues

There is a popular saying that tells – Prevention Is Better Than Cure. It applies very well to the prevention of gallbladder diseases and issues.

Although not all risk factors can be managed and prevented altogether, you can at the least keep the occurrence of the gallbladder disease at bay by maintaining a proper and healthy diet; and leading a healthy lifestyle.

  • Eat balanced meals three times in a day.
  • Avoid a diet that is high in cholesterol and fats; and low in fiber. This helps to clear excess of fats from the body.
  • Reduce intake of fatty processed foods. Instead, eat more of fiber-rich vegetables and fruits.
  • Adhere to a regular exercise schedule. This will not just drastically cut down the risk factors but also increase your mobility which is vital for the contraction of the digestive organs but also will help to maintain a healthy weight.
  • Drink alcohol in moderate dosage.
  • Manage properly any health problems like diabetes and high cholesterol that can otherwise lead to the formation of gallstones in the gallbladder region.

The symptoms, even if mild in nature must be taken seriously. You could be having mild biliary pain that you feel can resolve itself. But that’s false assumption. The problem instead can turn serious, and evolve into a persistent and growing problem.  Hence, prevent this scenario from occurring by getting yourself diagnosed by a specialist doctor at the best gastroenterology hospital in Bangalore, M H Surgery. The doctor will not only diagnose it effectively but will help to remove problematic gallstones through simple out-patient testing procedures.

However, despite the best prevention steps undertaken, most gallbladder diseases will eventually require surgery at the best Gastroenterology Hospital in Bangalore, MH Surgery, primarily for the removal of gallstones.

A gallbladder surgery at the best hospital for gallbladder stone surgery in Bangalore, MH Surgery, can result in quick recovery with minimal or no long-term side effects from the surgery. There could be odd issues like temporary digestive problems during the recovery process. Most people who maintain a healthy lifestyle and stick to healthy diet sans fatty foods will be able to resume normal activities after a few months.

There is no knowing when Gallbladder Disease can occur. You could already be having it but will not know it as the symptoms will not be visible. By the time you learn of it, the disease will have become serious.

Remember that Prevention is Better than Cure; a minimally-invasive surgery at the best hospital for gallstone stone surgery in Bangalore, M H Surgery, if undertaken on time can help to get rid of the disease.

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