Recognizing the Symptoms of Gallbladder Disease

You’ve probably heard of the gallbladder. But do you know what this small, pear-shaped organ does and how it contributes to digestion? In this article, we will explain how you can recognize gallbladder disease symptoms.

Dr. Chad Carlton, an experienced surgeon at LoneStar Bariatrics who specializes in bariatric procedures, can help identify gallbladder disease and offer treatment options to alleviate your symptoms. Here’s what you should know about your gallbladder, how to spot problems, and how to lower your risk of long-term problems.

Your gallbladder is hard at work

People rarely discuss their gallbladder until they experience a problem. This small organ is located on the upper right side of your abdomen, beneath your liver. Your gallbladder does not have a glamorous job; it is in charge of storing a substance known as bile.

Bile is a fluid produced by your liver that aids digestion by breaking down fat in the food you eat. This fluid is stored in your gallbladder when you are not eating. When you digest food, your gallbladder releases bile via a small duct. The bile duct is the tube that connects your liver and gallbladder to your small intestine.

Gallbladder disease occurs when you have medical problems related to your gallbladder. These conditions range from infections, inflammation, and blockages to polyps, stones, and cancer.

Gallbladder disease symptoms

Depending on your specific condition, you may experience a variety of gallbladder symptoms. The following are common symptoms of gallbladder disease:

Diarrhea on a regular basis
Chills or fever
Vomiting, nausea, or a loss of appetite
Skin irritation
Sweating profusely
Yellowish eyes or skin
Dark urine, pale stools, or both
Rapid heartbeat and abrupt blood pressure drops
Severe pain in the lower to mid-right abdomen

Dr. Carlton may recommend a variety of treatment strategies to resolve your symptoms, ranging from dietary changes to surgery, depending on the cause of your gallbladder problems.

Loss of weight and gallbladder disease

Gallbladder disease can occur for a variety of reasons, but it is especially common in men and women who are overweight.

If you have gallbladder disease of almost any variety, Dr. Carlton can assist you with effective solutions that provide long-term results. These options range from nutritional counseling with Allison Rezentes, RD, a trained dietitian, to medical weight-loss management plans that include safe and effective medications.

Gallbladder removal

Dr. Carlton may recommend surgical removal of your gallbladder if it is causing problems, significant pain, or other unpleasant side effects. When your gallbladder is removed, your digestion remains unchanged, but your body is no longer able to store bile.

Every year, approximately 600,000 Americans have gallbladder surgery. Dr. Carlton at LoneStar Bariatrics employs minimally invasive surgical methods whenever possible. This process uses smaller incisions, which results in fewer complications, faster recovery times, and the ability to go home the same day.

Don’t let your gallbladder problems worsen. To learn more about your treatment options, book an appointment online or call our Plano, Texas office.

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