Cholelithiasis – Symptoms, Causes, Treatments and Prevention

Cholelithiasis: Cholelithiasis is also known as gallstones by some people. These gallstones are hard and present in the gallbladder. The liver produces a special liquid chemical called bile and it may help digest fats. It can be discovered by surgery, x-ray, and autopsy.

Changes in lecithin, bile salts, cholesterol, and water may be formed a nest around gallstones. These gallstones may be small like sand and large as an inch in diameter. They may be yellow in color. It is commonly affected Americans, women, and old-aged people.

Health problems such as diabetes, obesity, liver cirrhosis, and hereditary blood cell disorder, or increase in age are risk factors of cholelithiasis. It can occur in any part of the biliary tree such as the bile duct and gallbladder.

Causes of cholelithiasis:

Increased in cholesterol, bilirubin or bile salts in bile develop cholelithiasis. When bile sits, gallstones are produced in the gallbladder. It is commonly affected overweight people and health problems such as diabetes. Hispanics, Native Americans, and family history of cholelithiasis may increase the risk of this disease.

Other causes:

  • Biliary stasis
  • Biliary infection
  • Production of bile with cholesterol
  • Hemolytic diseases
  • Decrease in bile content

Signs and symptoms:

Biliary colic is the main symptom of cholelithiasis. Biliary colic is the severe pain in the belly. Other symptoms of cholelithiasis include fast heartbeat, bloating, gas and stomachache, vomiting, nausea, jaundice, and feeling bad after eating spicy foods.


A blood test and endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography test will be preferred by the health care provider for the diagnosis of the disease. Tumors, stones, and other problems may be found by the ERCP test. Dye is pouring in the endoscopy type and then it passes through the pancreas and bile. The X-ray can be used to show the stones. HIDA is an effective nuclear test, may be recommended by the doctor. Sometimes ultrasound may also be used to determine the diseases.


Medicines are effective to remove the pain. Laparoscopic cholecystectomy surgery may help to remove the gallstones. Ursodeoxycholic acid is a successful medical therapy in case of cholelithiasis develops from cholesterol. The catheter is transmitted by the abdominal wall and gallbladder in contact dissolution. The catheter removes the gallstones quickly. Electrohydraulic shock wave lithotripsy is also effective and successful to treat this disease.


  • Cholangitis
  • Choledocholithiasis
  • Pancreatitis
  • Acute cholecystitis


  • You should eat foods which contain low fat.
  • You should lose some weight.
  • You should avoid oily, spicy foods.
  • If you have symptoms of gallstones, you have to go to the health care provider immediately.
  • You should get information like causes, symptoms, and treatment of gallstones from your doctor.

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