Biliary colic is a disease of the gallbladder that is characterized by abdominal pain. This disorder is mostly seen after gallbladder removal, which may develop due to improper care and treatment post surgery.
The gallbladder is a small, pear shaped organ that is located near the liver. The gallbladder is a storehouse for bile, which is a bitter fluid that is yellowish brown or dark green in color and is secreted by the liver. There are many gallbladder diseases like cholecystitis, biliary colic and gallstones etc. Biliary colic is a disease of the gallbladder that causes a cramping and severe pain in the right, upper abdominal region.
This severe pain is caused due to the presence gallbladder stones in the bile ducts. These gallstones are formed when the bile becomes over-concentrated and begins to crystallize, which can lead to bile duct obstruction. There are three types of gallbladder stones namely pigment stones, cholesterol stones and mixed stones. The pain is caused due to the pressure applied when the muscles in the bile duct contract and try to push the gallbladder stones.
An overweight individual is at a risk of developing biliary or gallbladder stones. Almost one third of the patients who have gallbladder stones tend to develop pain. Women who are on birth control pills, pregnant women and women who are taking estrogen replacement therapy, especially after menopause are at a higher risk of developing biliary pain. Biliary tract disease may also be caused due to advancing age or heredity. Other factors that can lead to the development of this condition are diabetes, sudden weight loss, certain medication and gastrointestinal disorders. Let’s see more about the symptoms, methods of treatment and preventive measures of biliary pain.
Symptoms of Cholecystitis
There are several indications which can be characterized to biliary colic. The symptoms are triggered even when a person breaks a fast and eats a heavy meal.
- The most common symptom of this health issue is a constant pain in the upper abdominal region.
- There is a feeling of pressure in the upper abdominal region just below the breastbone, which may seem similar to the accumulation of gas. The pain may also be experienced in the region near the liver. The pain also tends to spread and can be felt in the right shoulder blade.
- The individual may also be suffering from fever and nausea, followed by vomiting.
- A feeling of heaviness, especially after eating a meal that contains fat is another symptom of gallstones.
Diagnosis of Biliary Colic
If an individual experiences the above-mentioned symptoms, then he must consult a doctor. The doctor may perform a physical exam and observe if the individual experiences any pain, especially in the upper abdominal region. An ultrasound may also be taken to detect the presence of gallbladder stones. The individual may also need to get his blood tested if he is suffering from fever or if he experiences persistent pain.
Biliary Colic Treatment
In order to prevent the occurrence of gallstones and biliary pain, one must keep a control on the diet. Avoid taking a meal that is high in fat and practice a healthy lifestyle. In case you are diagnosed with this gallbladder disorder, then the physician may prescribe the following methods of treatment;
- The doctor may prescribe certain pain killers to ease the pain caused due to cholecystitis.
- The diet, which is also referred to as gallbladder diet must include foods that are fat free and high in fiber.
- if the pain becomes severe, then the individual may have to undergo a gallbladder surgery called cholecystectomy, which is a procedure to remove the affected gallbladder through a small incision on the abdomen.
- In case, symptoms of biliary colic after gallbladder removal are noticed, then certain medication that help dissolve the gallstones may be prescribed.
Contact your doctor immediately if you experience chills caused due to fever as it may be an indication of cholecystitis, which is the infection of the gallbladder. Individuals who are diagnosed with biliary colic must include foods that are high in fiber in their diet. They must also maintain their weight and avoid fatty foods.