10 Symptoms Of A Gallbladder Attack
The gallbladder is a small organ located just under the right lobe of the liver that aids with the digestive process. It does this by storing bile, which it excretes into the small intestine to help break down food. In some cases, hardened deposits of bile—known as gallstones—or infections such as Cholecystitis may impair the function of the gallbladder, leading to a painful gallbladder attack. Often mistaken for heart attacks, gallbladder attacks can be excruciating. They tend to come on suddenly and can last anywhere from a few minutes to hours. Recognizing symptoms is crucial. Here are ten symptoms associated with gallbladder attacks:
Indigestion after meals is the most common symptom of a gallbladder attack. However, indigestion is a symptom of countless conditions not associated with gallbladder problems. A person suffering indigestion as a result of gallbladder attack may experience a steady gripping pain, similar to heartburn, in the upper abdomen or under the breastbone.
In some cases, nausea, and even vomiting, can occur after a meal. This is the body’s way of relieving the excess gas and pressure caused by impaired digestion. This is particularly likely to occur follow a rich meal because the gallbladder plays a special role in breaking down fat.
Lack Of Appetite
As a blockage progresses digestion becomes increasingly painful. This pain, especially when combined with vomiting, deters individuals with gallstones from eating.
Because the gallbladder excretes bile produced in liver into the small intestines excessive blockage will cause bile to accumulate in the liver, instead of passing into the digestive tract. When this blockage happens, jaundice may occur, which causes the skin to visibly yellow.
Sediment from gallstones—which are composed of cholesterol, calcium salts and bile pigment—may cause the color of urine to deepen. Urine ranging from dark yellow to brown may indicate excess toxicity caused by gallstones.
Explosive diarrhea may also occur, sometimes frequently anywhere in excess of four times a day. This is due to a lack of bile. This may also be accompanied by passing pain that will be felt throughout the belly and in the lower back. Excessive bowel movements, anywhere up to ten a day could be an indication of a gallbladder attack.
A lack of bile may also cause changes in stool color and consistency. Stool that is soft, light or clay-like in color, and/or floats often indicates gallbladder problems.
Fever and chills may occur in more severe cases and an infection may be present. If there is vomiting and nausea do seek medical attention as quickly as possible. An inflammation in the gallbladder is a life threatening condition.
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