Gallstones | Cholelithiasis
Gallstones | Cholelithiasis are hardened deposits of digestive fluid that can form in your gallbladder. Gallbladder is a small, pear shaped Organ on the right side of your abdomen, just beneath your liver. The gallbladder holds a digestive fluid called bile that’s released into your small intestine.Bile also carries wastes like cholestrol and bilirubin, which your body makes when it breaks down red blood cells.These things can form gallstones.
Gallstones | Cholelithiasis range in size from as small as a grain of sand to as large as a golf ball. Some people develop just one gallstone, while others develop many gallstones at the same time. You might not know that you have them until they block a bile duct, causing pain that needs treatment right away.
The two main kinds of gallstones are-
• Cholestrol stones –
These are usually yellow-green. They are the most common, making up 80% of gallstones.
• Pigment stones –
There are smaller and dark brown or black in colour. They are made of bilirubin.
Sign & Symptoms-
Gallstones | Cholelithiasis may cause no sign & symptoms. If a gallstone lodges in a duct and causes a blockage, the resulting sign & symptoms may include-
• Sudden and rapidly intensifying pain in the upper right portion of abdomen.
• Sudden and rapidly intensifying pain in the center of abdoman, just below breast bone.
• Pain in your right shoulder
• Back pain between shoulder blades
• Nausea or vomitting
• An upset stomach with digestive problems like indigestion, heartburn and gas.
Gallstones pain may last several minutes to a few hours.
Doctor’s are not sure exactly what causes gallstones, but they might happen when –
• There’s too much cholestrol in your bile .
Your body needs bile for digestion. It usually dissolves cholestrol. But when it can’t do that, the extra cholestrol might form stones.
• There’s too much bilirubin in your bile .
Conditions like cirrhosis, infections and blood disorders can cause your liver to make too much bilirubin.
• Your gallbladder doesn’t empty all the way.
Your gall bladder doesn’t empty completely or often enough, bill may become very concentrated, contributing to the formation of gallstones.
You are more likely to get gallstones if you –
• Have a family history of gall stones.
• Are a woman
• Are pregnant
• Are over age 40
• Are obese
• Have diabetes
• Are fasting
• Lose a lot of weight in a short time
• Don’t get much exercise
• Have a diet high in fat and cholestrol but low in fiber
• Use birth control pills or hormone replacement therapy
• Take medicine to lower your cholestrol
• Have haemolytic anaemia or cirrhosis of the liver
• Have an intestinal disease like Crohn’s disease.
• Inflammation of the gallbladder –
A gallstone that becomes lodged in the neck of the gallbladder can cause inflammation of the gall bladder (Cholecystitis). Cholecystitis can cause severe pain and fever.
• Blockage of the common bile duct-
Gallstones can block the ducts through which bile flows from gallbladder or liver to your swell intestine. Severe pain, jaundice and bile duct infection can occur as a result of blockage.
• Blockage of pancreatic duct-
A gallstone can cause a blockage in the pancreatic duct, which can lead to inflammation of the pancreas( pancreatitis). Pancreatitis cause intense, constant abdominal pain and usually requires hospitalization.
• Gallbladder Cancer-
People with a history of gallstones have an increased risk of gallbleddu cancer ,but it is very rare.
• Don’t skip meals
• Lose weight slowly
• Eat more high-fiber foods
• Maintain a healthy weight
• Blood tests – To check for signs of infection or blockage.
• Ultrasound – This makes images of the inside of your body.
• CT scan – To make more clarified opinion over site and location of gallstones.
Treatment options for gallstones include-
• Surgery to remove the gallbladder-
Your doctor may recommend surgery to remove your gallbladder, since gallstones frequently recur. Once your gallbladder is removed, bile flows directly fromyour liver into your small intestine, rather than being stored in your gallbladder.
•Medications to dissolve gallstones –
Medications may take months or years of treatment to dissolve gallstones and will likely form again if treatment is stopped. Medications for gallstones are not commonly used.
In Ayurveda gallstones are named as Pittashmri . In gall bladder quantitively accumulated Kapha mixes with the Pitta already present in it. The mixture of Kapha and Pitta in Pittashaya (Gall bladder) leads to the formation of viscous material causing obstruction in the passage of Vayu. Hence, the Vayu get vitiated and converts the viscous material into dry and solid form called as Pittashmari.
Beneficial Herbs –
• Beetroot- It supports healthy liver function and bile flow.
• Fenugreek – It works by taking cholestrol out of the bile and increasing the bile acid concentration by 4 times.
• Cinnamon- It supports healthy bile flow and digestive enzyme flow through the pancreatic and bile ducts.
• Apple vinegar – It helps in dissolving gallstones.
Effective Medications –
• Shweta Parpati
• Hajrulayahad Bhasm
• Punarnava Mandur
• Chandraprabha Vati
• Kokilaksh churna
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