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more about Cholecystitis


  • This is when the gallbladder becomes infected. It is associated with gallstones more than 90% of the time. When gallstones become impacted in the bile ducts, infection occurs behind the impaction.

  • Often starts after a large fatty meal
  • Sudden, steady pain in the middle or right upper abdomen
  • Vomiting
  • Fever

  • Gallstones
  • Ischemia (blood supply decrease to gallbladder)
  • Infections in persons with AIDS

  • Examination:
    1. Tenderness in right upper abdomen
    2. Gallbladder can be felt in some cases
    3. Yellow skin or eyes may occur
  • Laboratory Findings:
    1. Elevated white blood cell count
    2. Elevated total Bilirubin level
    3. Elevated Alkaline phosphatase
    4. Amylase may be moderately elevated
  • Imaging
    1. X-Rays may who gall stones
    2. HIDA scan (special X-Ray test for obstructed gallstones)
    3. Ultrasound may show gallstones or thickened gallbladder wall

  • Bowel rest (no food or drink)
  • Intravenous fluid/feeding
  • Intravenous broad-spectrum antibiotics
  • Pain medications (Demerol usually best)
  • Surgical removal of the gallbladder 2-3 days after cholecystitis for most patients
  • Immediate surgical gallbladder removal if gangrene has occurred

  • Untreated gangrene in the gallbladder may occur. This is a severe infection with destruction of tissue. Diabetics and the elderly are at highest risk.
  • Cholangitis -- infection that occurs in common bile duct outside the gallbladder

  • Seek immediate emergency medical treatment.

more about Cholecystitis

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