The gallbladder is an important organ to store the enzymes needed for digestion. The main problem associated with the gallbladder is that it is prone to stone formation. When the amount of fluid in the gallbladder begins to dry up, the sugar-salt and other micronutrient elements present in it accumulate together and take the form of small stone pieces which are called gallstones. 80% of stones are made up of cholesterol which gradually hardens and takes the form of a stone inside the gall bladder. Cholesterol stones are yellow-green.
Types of Gallstones
The following are the types of stones that form in the gallbladder.
This is the most common type of gallstone which is called cholesterol gallstones. It is often yellow. These stones are mainly made up of undissolved cholesterol but sometimes they also contain other substances.
This stone is dark brown or black. It is formed when an excessive amount of bilirubin is included in the bile. Bilirubin is a fluid that is made by the liver and stored by the gall bladder.
Symptoms of Gallstones
Most people with gallstones do not have any symptoms. They may not even know it until they feel any symptoms. It is also called 'silent gallstones'. As the complications of gallstones progress, so do its symptoms. The most common symptom is a pain in the upper abdomen because it usually comes in episodes. It is also often referred to as an 'attack'. It can take days, weeks, months and even years between attacks of pain. Its pain usually starts 30 minutes after eating a fatty meal. Its pain can generally be severe, dull and constant. The flare can last up to 5 hours. Waves of its pain can go up to the right shoulder and back. This unbearable pain often occurs only during the night.
Some other common symptoms of gallstones are-
- Nausea and vomiting.
- A negative reaction of the body to fatty foods.
Causes of Gallstones
The cause of gallstones is not yet established and it can occur at any age but there are some factors, which can increase the chances of gallstones such as-
- Post-bariatric surgery.
- Taking certain medicines.
- Due to prolonged illness.
Diagnosis & Treatment of Gallstones
In this test sound waves are used to take pictures of the internal parts of the patient's body. Gallstones are well visible in these types of tests.
With the help of this test, pictures of some internal parts of the body are also extracted. This includes the pancreas and bile ducts.
Endoscopic ultrasound scan-
This test is done with an instrument called an endoscope. This device is thin, flexible, tube-like and looks like a telescopic camera. This device is inserted through the mouth into the stomach. Very small stones can also be seen by this.
This test provides complete pictures of the bile ducts, liver, and pancreas.
Home remedies for Gallstones
Apple juice is consumed as a home remedy for gallstones. If this juice is consumed regularly, then gallstones are removed through the stool because by consuming apple juice, the gallstones become soft and are easily removed through the stool. At the moment, there is no exact concrete evidence in this regard yet but its consumption is considered beneficial.
The use of lemon water cures gallstones. According to scientific research in this regard, lemon is a kind of citrus fruit. Its use promotes the ability to expel the stones present in the gall bladder. Apart from this, vitamin C prevents the problem of stones from growing and lemon is considered a good source of vitamin C. Therefore, lemon juice is proven to help get rid of gallstones.
Dandelion root is used as an effective home remedy for gallstones. According to research published on the website of NCBI (National Center for Biotechnology Information), dandelion contains taraxacum and taraxacerin which help treat gall bladder problems. Dandelion root not only improves digestion power but is also used to treat gallstones.
Drinking pear juice is very beneficial in gallstones because it has anti-inflammatory properties which is an effective way to remove inflammation due to which also prevents the formation of gallstones.