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Gall Bladder Surgery > What are the symptoms of Gallstones?

After you eat a meal, especially of the fatty kind, a hormone is released that activates the gallbladder to excrete bile into the bowel. Bile is essential for the digestion of fat. Occasionally a gallstone wedges itself in the outlet of the gallbladder preventing the bile form exiting the gallbladder. The gallbladder continues to attempt to excrete bile which causes the pain of a gallbladder attack. In many cases the gall stone will release itself spontaneously and the symptoms will disappear.

Gallbladder attacks can cause mild to very severe pain. This is the most common symptom of gallstones. Pain will often occur during the night or after a fatty meal. The pain often radiates around the body causing pain from the back on the right hand side. Occasionally pain is felt in the lower part of the chest which can often be confused with heart attack. If you suffer these symptoms seek medical attention.

In the event where gall stones fail to release the gall bladder may become inflamed and this condition is known as cholecystitis. In rare cases this can lead to serious infections. Other symptoms such as nausea, flatulence (belching) and intolerance of fatty foods are often attributed to gall stones but these can be caused by other conditions and may or may not improve after the gallbladder is removed.

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