There are a number of accessory organs that perform important functions in the human body. One of these organs is the gallbladder, which secretes bile to aid in digestion. Sometimes, this bile can form stones which is called cholelithiasis.
Definition of Cholelithiasis
The formation of stones in the gallbladder is called cholelithiasis.
Anatomy of Cholelithiasis
The gallbladder secretes bile that helps the body to digest food, especially those that are higher in fat. The bile flows through the common bile duct and into the digestive system from the gallbladder. If stones form in the gallbladder this can not only irritate the gallbladder wall and cause pain but also block the outflow tracks.
Causes of Cholelithiasis
There are a number of reasons that people can develop gallstones. These include:
- A family history of predisposition to cholelithiasis
- A diet high in certain compounds such as phosphate
- Liver disease known as cirrhosis
- Sickle cell anemia
Symptoms of Cholelithiasis
People with cholelithiasis will have a number of different symptoms including
- Abdominal pain in the right upper quadrant
- This pain could get worse with movement
- This pain could get worse after eating
- Nausea and vomiting
Diagnosis of Cholelithiasis
The first step is a physical exam performed by the physician. The physician will palpate over the right upper quadrant and examine the patient for signs of pain or tenderness. The definitive way to diagnose cholelithiasis is using an ultrasound. Because cholelithiasis has stones, the stones contrast markedly in density with the liquid and air in the area. This actually makes ultrasound the most accurate method to diagnose cholelithiasis. This is a quick and safe procedure that provides a definitive answer.
Prevention of Cholelithiasis
Patients can take a few steps to lessen their risk of cholelithiasis by eating a diet that is relatively low in greasy or fatty foods, taking care of their liver by drinking alcohol only in moderation, and exercising regularly.
Am I At Risk of Cholelithiasis?
Patients with cirrhosis, a family history of cholelithiasis, or sickle cell anemia are all at higher risk of developing cholelithiasis.
Treatment of Cholelithiasis
After a diagnosis of cholelithiasis has been made, the physician will ask the patient whether or not they wish to take out their gall bladder in a procedure known as a cholecystectomy. While this procedure is elective, almost every patient with cholelithiasis will have their gallbladder removed at some point in time. A general surgeon will make an incision in the right upper quadrant to access the gallbladder. This incision is small because most gallbladders are removed laparoscopically. The general surgeon will ligate the vessels feeding the organ to stop the bleeding before removal.
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Cholelithiasis is a serious and sensitive situation that needs to be fixed as soon as possible. Cholelithiasis can cause serious pain and can have serious consequences which deserves the attention of a good general surgeon. Admirable surgeons like Dr. Jenna Kazil spend years training and treating cholelithiasis. Patients in need of a laparoscopic and/or open cholecystectomy on Florida’s West Coast should locate a distinguished general surgeon who has the surgical skills necessary to perform these serious surgical operations for the benefit of their patients. Dr. J. Kazil is an exceptional general surgeon who has developed an impressive track record of successful cholecystectomy cases. Dr. Kazil understands the important circumstances that drive the treatment with the accuracy and compassion that everyone expects from a fine general surgeon. Jenna Kazil, MD, RPVI is a great surgical specialist working as a vascular and general surgeon seeing patients from South Sarasota to East Desoto and Hardee to North Hillsborough to West Manatee and Pinellas counties. Patients requiring a cholecystectomy should contact Dr. Kazil at the Florida Surgical Clinic located in Bradenton, FL today to schedule an appointment with a unique experienced physician that possesses a unique blend of expert skills and compassionate care.