Explainer: What are gallstones, its symptoms, and its risk factors?

Explainer: What are gallstones, its symptoms, and its risk factors?

Some people have mistaken having gallstones to experiencing acid reflux or ulcer because of its similar symptoms.

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KAMI learned that those who are obese, diabetic, taking medicine to lower cholesterol, and experiencing sudden loss of weight have a higher risk of having gallstones.

What are gallstones?

According to health website Mayo Clinic, gallstones are hardened deposits of digestive fluid that can appear in one’s gallbladder.

The gallbladder is a pear-shaped organ under the liver. It holds the digestive fluid called bile produced by the liver and helps digest fats and certain vitamins.

There are two types of gallstones. First, cholesterol gallstones. It is composed of undissolved cholesterol. Second, the pigment gallstones that form when the bile contains too many bilirubin.

What are the symptoms of gallstones?

There are times that gallstones may show no signs or symptoms. However, if a blockage occurs, it may develop the following symptoms:

  • Sudden and rapidly intensifying pain in the upper right portion of your abdomen
  • Sudden and rapidly intensifying pain in the center of your abdomen, just below your breastbone
  • Back pain between your shoulder blades
  • Pain in your right shoulder
  • Nausea or vomiting

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What are the risk factors of gallstones?

  • Being female
  • Being age 40 or older
  • Being overweight or obese
  • Being sedentary
  • Being pregnant
  • Having a family history of gallstones
  • Having diabetes
  • Having certain blood disorders
  • Sudden loss of weight
  • Eating a high-fat diet
  • Eating a high-cholesterol diet
  • Eating a low-fiber diet
  • Taking medications that contain estrogen
  • Having liver disease

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How can you prevent gallstones?

  • Avoid skipping meals
  • Lose weight slowly
  • Eat much more high-fiber food
  • Maintain a healthy weight

Disclaimer: For Educational and Informational Purposes Only. Before starting any new diet and exercise program please check with your doctor and clear any exercise and/or diet changes with them before beginning. We are NOT doctors, nutritionists or registered dietitians. We do not claim to help cure any condition or disease.

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Source: Kami.com.ph

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