Gallstones: Types, Causes, Risk, Symptoms, Treatment, and Diet

Let’s start with Gallbladder! The gallbladder is an important organ in our body. It assists the digestive process by collecting bile and discharging it in the small intestine when food enters. Gallstones (stones in Gallbladder) are tiny pieces of stones formed inside the gallbladder.


What Are the Types of Gallstones

There are the following two types of Stones in Gallbladder:

1. Cholesterol Stones

The color of cholesterol stones is generally green and yellow. Almost 80% of stones in the gallbladder are cholesterol stones.

2. Pigment Stones

As compared to cholesterol stones, the size of pigment stones is smaller and the color of these stones is darker. These stones are not so commonly found in Gallbladder.

What Are the Causes of Stones in Gallbladder?

There can be many reasons for gallstones which differ from person to person. Mentioned below are three common causes of stones in the gallbladder:

  1. Bile contains an excess of cholesterol. Usually, bile holds enough chemicals to dissolve cholesterol excreted by the liver. But, if, for any reason, the liver excretes extra cholesterol than what your bile can dissolve, then that extra cholesterol first becomes crystal and then becomes hard, thus called as stones.
  2. If the gallbladder doesn’t empty properly, then there are chances of the formation of gallstones.
  3. Diseases like cirrhosis, biliary tract infections, and certain blood disorders case Gallstones in which bile contains a surplus of Bilirubin. It can lead to the formation of Pigment Stones.

What Are the Risk Factors for Gallstones?

Apart from the above-mentioned three causes of gallstones, there are some other risk factors for gallstones.

1. Genetics

There are more chances for stones in the gallbladder of the people whose ancestors have had the same disease.

2. Obesity

Obesity leads to a rise in cholesterol levels in the body and also sometimes interferes with gallbladder function for emptying it.

3. Birth Control Pills

Birth control pills can cause a high level of oestrogens (estrogens). Pregnant women, who take birth control pills, have high chances of increased cholesterol in their bodies. This ultimately leads to the formation of stones in the gallbladder.

4. Age

Gallstones are a common problem among old age people.

What Are the Symptoms of Gallstones?

symptoms of gallstones

Stones in Gallbladder are known as silent stones as they often don’t cause any symptoms. A person gets to know about gallstones generally when he gets himself examined for any other diseases. Still, there are some symptoms like:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Severe pain occasionally in the upper back and upper abdomen
  • Gastrointestinal problems like indigestion, heartburn and bloating

What Are the Treatments for Gallstones?

The traditional treatment for gallstones is generally comprised of taking out gallbladder via surgery, known as Open Cholecystectomy. But the newer procedure, known as Laparoscopic Cholecystectomy, is more often used these days.

Laparoscopic Cholecystectomy

In this treatment option, a surgeon looks inside of the body through a camera passed inside the body via several tiny cuts in the abdomen. It is majorly used in gallbladder removals. After this surgery, patients have to stay at the hospital for a few days.

Open Cholecystectomy

It is a more intensive procedure in which a doctor takes out the whole gallbladder via a single big cut in the abdomen. But it is now a less preferred treatment. A patient whose gallbladder is removed has no issue in their body after the surgery. It’s because humans can live without a gallbladder. The only thing you should take care of is to avoid certain food items after your gallbladder removal.

Food to Take and Not to Take After You Have a Gallstone Surgery

Once your gallstone surgery is over, you have to mainly intake liquids like broth and gelatin for a few days. You can slowly transit to solid food items when you start feeling better. Your gallbladder used to break-down fats from your body, but now when it is removed, you have to take care not to consume fatty foods, else you may experience bloating, diarrhea, and gas.

Listed below are some food items that you need to avoid if you have had gallstones:

  • Fried foods like potato chips, french fries, etc.
  • Dairy products containing high fat like cream, whole milk, cheese, etc.
  • Junk foods like Pizza, burger, etc.
  • Food with extra butter and cheese.
  • Chocolates and sauces.
  • High fibre foods like Cereals, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Legumes, etc.

You may have severe pain due to Gallstones, and this may affect your mind and body badly. If you feel low and unhappy, it may be a sign of depression. Check out our post on Depression Awareness: Signs, Causes, Types & Treatments to get help to overcome such situations.

Do let us know in the comment box below what other symptoms of gallstones you know and what specific food items your doctor advised you to avoid after your gallbladder treatment.

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23 Responses

  1. Mamta Tripathi says:

    Thank you so much. I went to the doctor after this and got surgery scheduled.

  2. Hyo Pennison says:

    Are herbal treatments for gallstones that do not require any surgery effective?

  3. Jamey Segoviano says:

    I am overweight and I have read many times that obese people are at greater risk for gallstones. Can changing my diet help me getting rid of gallstones if I have them in the future?

  4. Mee Hiser says:

    I am curious to know are eggs bad for gallstones?

  5. Renate Dewaele says:

    This blog about Stones in Gallbladder helped me a lot in understanding how all this happens.

  6. Maddy nathan says:

    Gallstones are caused due to junk foods, improper diet etc. Since Gallbladder is important for us so we should know the importance of gallbladder and how to be cure from gallstones. The treatment and diet given in this blog is very much useful for us to be cured from gallstones.

  7. Jordan sam says:

    what a wonderful information. I liked the way of describing the gallstones, its causes, risk, treatment and diet. Keep up the good work.

  8. Bret Ashton says:

    In today’s era everyone is eating junk foods and have no focus on proper diet due to which we are facing various types of health issues like Gallstones. Thanks for posting such a good post to get us know about the risk, treatment and diet for prevention from Gallstones.

  9. Ilias says:

    Gallstone is the normal problem we are facing with all most everyone these days due to not following proper diet at suitable time. Your blog helped me lot to know about Causes, Risk, Treatment & Diet of Gallstones and the type of gallstones as my mother is facing the same problem. i will go to doctor for surgery of gallblader for my mother as doctor has referred for it. Thanks.

  10. Aviv Jonathon says:

    I have also operated for gallstones since i have not followed proper diet in proper time due to which gallbladder was removed from mine. Now i feel relax but i always follow the diet given in this blog for gallstones treatment. Thanks for the information.

  11. Florian Randell says:

    I like the blog and all about the gallstones its causes, risk, treatment & diet. Good one!

  12. Tom Gerardo says:

    My mother operated gallstones one time but again she is facing same problems. I was distressed of emerging gallstones again but this piece of information helped me how to cure on that and what diets should be given to my mother to recover from it. Can it be possible to remove gallstone problem in one go?

  13. Julien says:

    Gallstones problem is the common problem we are facing these days. We should know the diet, causes and treatment for gallstones. I found this blog relevant and quite informative for galbladder and gallstones treatment, causes and diet.

  14. Philip Felix says:

    You have given good information on gallstones cause, risk, treatment & diet. Many of us don’t know about this. It’s good platform to know all this.

  15. Phillipy says:

    Its such a needful information for Gallstones and its effect on gallbladder. All of us should know the causes, risk, treatment and diet for gallstones.

  16. Jordan Bon says:

    Gallstones are mainly caused due to drinking dirty water, eating junk foods and it can happen again and again but if we follow these diet and treatment then definitely it may have solution to cure gallstones. Highly recommend this blog. Good work.

  17. Mia pogario says:

    As doctor’s say gallstones can happen again and again if we will not take proper diet in proper time. So there are various cause of gallstones in which some of them are mentioned here. I liked this blog as i was unaware of the treatment which i found here.

  18. Florian Ambrose says:

    These days gallstones problem have increased. I will definitely keep in mind the causes, risk, treatment & diet for gallstones.

  19. Health conscious ZVI says:

    Thanks for such a healthy information about Gallstones. I will share the information of gallstones and its prevention, treatment and diet with my friends.

  20. Lycos Malcolm says:

    Due to gallstones causes many of us today are facing stomach pain so please do checkup with doctor if this happens again and again. All of us should know the causes, risk, treatment and diet to prevent gallstones. You have shared a very good information on this blog.

  21. Julien Damien says:

    Gallstones can cause huge stomach pain if you will not follow the nutrition diet and should be consulted with doctor soon. The causes, risk, treatment and diet for preventing gallstones written in blog id helpful for me.

  22. Jammy Augustia says:

    I liked the information on causes & treatment of gallstones. Are your sure that removal of gallbladder from the human body will not affect human in long run?

  23. Gynecologist says:

    You’re obese. This is one of the biggest risk factors. Obesity can raise your cholesterol level and also make it harder for the gallbladder to empty completely.

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