Gallbladder Attack, Recognizing Symptoms and Preventative Steps
Your gallbladder is an organ in your body that sits in the right upper abdomen just below your liver. The job of your gallbladder is to store bile, also known as gall, that is produced by the liver. Bile is used to digest the fat from food.
Bile is made up of cholesterol, water, fats, bile salts, proteins, and a compound known as bilirubin. Sometimes, when bile contains too much bilirubin or cholesterol, it can harden and become harmful gallstones. Most people who experience gallstones don’t even know that they have them.
In most cases, gallstones can cause your bladder to become inflamed. In turn, this causes infection, pain, and other serious complications.
A gallbladder attack is a term used to describe a gallstone blockage. Gallstones block the bile ducts which then increases the pressure in the gallbladder. The reason it is called a gallbladder attack is due to the temporary “attack” of pain that occurs in the upper abdomen.
A gallbladder attack, also known as a gallstone blockage at times, can last anywhere from a few minutes to a few hours. Sometimes other serious health issues such as heart attacks are mistaken for gallbladder attacks.
Signs & Symptoms of a Gallbladder Attack
Signs and symptoms of a gallbladder attack include:
- Gallbladder pain
How to Avoid Gallstones
While you can’t always fully avoid gallstones, there are certain ways you can reduce the risk. Here are some ways you can avoid gallstones:
- Eat more dietary fiber
- Lose weight slowly
- Switch to lean proteins
On top of the things above, you should also ensure that you talk about your gallbladder health with your doctor. Your doctor will help you monitor your cholesterol in order to determine what lifestyle changes can work for you. If you’re ever worried, you should never have a second thought about consulting with your doctor.
If you’re dealing with gallstones or gallbladder attacks, you should contact a trusted gastroenterologist. A gastroenterologist is a physician with specific training in the management of diseases, GI conditions, of the gastrointestinal tract and liver. They will help you understand what you’re dealing with and how to treat it.
If you are dealing with this condition and are ready to find help, contact our Beverly Hills Center for Digestive Health team to schedule an appointment and begin treatment. There is no better time than now to get your health on track.