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Gallbladder disease

Alternative Names: Biliary disease

Gallbladder disease includes inflammation, infection, stones, or blockage (obstruction) of the gallbladder.

Causes of Gallbladder disease

The gallbladder is a sac located under the liver. It stores and concentrates bile produced in the liver. Bile aids in the digestion of fat, and is released from the gallbladder into the upper small intestine (duodenum) in response to food (especially fats).

Types of gallbladder disease include:

  • Cholecystitis (inflammation of the gallbladder)
  • Gallstones (cholelithiasis)
  • Chronic acalculous gallbladder disease (in which the natural movements needed to empty the gallbladder do not work well)
  • Gangrene or abscesses
  • Growths of tissue (polyps) in the gallbladder
  • Defects of the gallbladder that are present at birth (congenital)
  • Sclerosing cholangitis
  • Tumors of the gallbladder and bile ducts

Learn more about Gallbladder disease

Review Date: 7/6/2009
Reviewed By: George F. Longstreth, MD, Department of Gastroenterology, Kaiser Permanente Medical Care Program, San Diego, California. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.
Do not use this information for medical emergencies - Call 911. This information should not be used for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical practitioner should always be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Links to other websites do not constitute endorsements and are provided for information only. Any duplication or distribution of this information is strictly prohibited.
Copyright 2014 A.D.A.M., Inc.
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