TMJ Center of Los Angeles

Signs You Might Have Gallstones

Gallstones are small, hard crystalline masses that are formed in abnormal instances occurring in the gallbladder or bile ducts. Gallstones can be made from cholesterol, bile pigments, and calcium salts.

Gallstones are synonymous with severe pain because they cause blockages in the bile duct. Even just a partial blockage has the ability to cause serious irritation, not to mention inflammation in a patient’s gallbladder. Pain can last for three hours or more, even resulting in fever or jaundice.

Patients have a greater chance of getting gallstones if they are:

  • Female
  • Have a family history of diabetes
  • Gallstones on Mom’s side
  • Pregnant or taking birth control
  • Overweight

If You Experience the Following Symptoms, Call Dr. Davidson Today!

Gallstones might not produce any symptoms whatsoever. But, if you do experience the symptoms listed below, it’s important to contact your local gastroenterologist.

  • Upper belly pain
  • Upper back pain
  • Feelings of nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Bloating
  • Heartburn
  • Gas
  • Indigestion

What We Can Do About Gallstones

At Beverly Hills Center for Digestive Health, we can employ several treatment methods for gallstones. If your gallstones are not causing symptoms, you may not need any treatment. If they are, two approaches are generally recommended:

  • Surgery to remove the gallbladder (cholecystectomy). Like your appendix, your gallbladder is not a necessary organ and you can live healthily without it. If the gallbladder is removed, bile flows straight from your liver into your small intestine, which may cause some temporary diarrhea.
  • Oral medication to dissolve gallstones. This is only recommended if surgery is not an option. Medication may take months or years to take effect, and gallstones may reoccur if you stop taking the medication.

We create a custom-tailored plan suited to fit your individual needs. If you suffer from any of the symptoms mentioned above, contact our office today to schedule your consultation. Delaying treatment or surgery can often cause more costly problems down the road. We’re here to help.

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