Services & Specialties February 09, 2021

Don’t Ditch Your Date!

Have you had to miss some of life’s best moments due to abdominal pain, nausea or worse, after eating? It could be a sign of gallstones or gallbladder disease. Fortunately, Adena Health System can help!

The gallbladder is a small pear-shaped organ located under the liver. It stores and concentrates bile produced in the liver that gets released into the upper small intestine and aids in the digestion of fat. When the duct to the small intestine gets blocked with either gallstones or bile build-up, the resulting irritation causes inflammation that leads to abdominal pain, discomfort and often gallbladder disease.

Gallstones are caused by a chemical imbalance in the bile that leaves excess cholesterol to form small “stones” in the gallbladder and the hepatic duct (which leads to the small intestine). Gallstones are very common and not problematic until they start accumulating. It is thought that an excess in high-fat foods may trigger the gallstones. Foods such as fried foods, highly processed foods like cakes, pies and cookies, whole-milk, cheese, ice cream, butter and fatty red meat should be avoided if a person has gallbladder issues. Symptoms of gallbladder disease include abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, chills, fever, chronic diarrhea, jaundice and irregular stools and urine.

Although medicines can be used to relieve discomfort, the definitive treatment for gallbladder issues is to remove the gallbladder surgically. Removing the gallbladder often has little impact on the digestive system and the procedure is regularly done minimally invasively to reduce pain and recovery time.

The risks of not treating gallstones can include unpredictable attacks of gallstone pain, gallbladder rupture, episodes of inflammation or serious infection of the gallbladder, bile ducts or pancreas. Jaundice and discomforts like gas, vomiting, and diarrhea can occur and diminish quality of life.

The bottom line? You don’t need to live with the disruption of gallbladder pain and discomfort. Call Adena Surgical for a consultation at 740-779-4550, so you don’t have to leave your date at the table!