Gallstones: Prevention, Risk Factors & Treatment

Gallstones Prevention

All of us have experienced some Stomach pain several times in our lives. Even though there are various reasons for it and generally there’s nothing to worry about, treatments are possible at home. For mild Abdominal pain, taking proper rest might help. The pain’s severity can range from mild to extreme depending upon the cause. Abdominal pain is widespread, but if the pain doesn’t get better in four to five days or goes extreme, it needs immediate medical attention. 

Among several causes, gallstones could be one of the reasons for Abdominal Pain. 

Here we will be discussing on How to get rid of gallstones.

What are Gallstones?

Gallstones are small solid materials that form in your gall bladders, a small organ under your liver. If you have them, you might hear your doctor saying you have stone/ cholelithiasis.

The gallbladder releases bile. Bile is a fluid prepared by the liver that helps indigestion. In addition, bile carries out waste like cholesterol and bilirubin, which your body makes during the breakdown of red blood cells, which sometimes can form gallstones.

Women and older people are more likely to have gallstones. The size of it can vary from one person to the other. There are no symptoms except abdominal pain. In some cases, it can be minor and, other times, extreme pain.

The doctor might advise conducting test like: 

  • CT Scan
  • Blood Test
  • Ultrasound

Risk Factors of Gallstones

Mentioned below are people who are most likely to get gallstones:

  • If you are overweight, you are at risk of having gallstones.
  • Women most likely are at risk of having gallstones.
  • If you are someone who has been on higher cholesterol and fat diet.
  • People Above the age of 40. 
  • Suffering from any critical health issues.
  • Consume high cholesterol and fat food.
  • They are on any form of drugs.
  • Have lost a large amount of weight.
  • If you do not indulge in any physical activity.

Gallstone Treatment

Small gallstones can be dissolved. So naturallythey need not be treated as they can pass through the body independently if you drink plenty of water daily. 

Some natural ways of dissolving gallstones-

  • Yoga – Studies show that Yoga Can help pass gallstones naturally. Yoga improves lipid profile in diabetes. People with these types of gallstones have abnormal lipids and can Expect good results with Yoga. There is no scientific evidence for it. However, Yoga can help relieve some symptoms of it.

  • Apple Juice – Apple juice can soften the Gallstone and help you dissolve it. This claim spread because of a letter where a woman said her gallstones passed due to consumption of apple juice.

There is no scientific proof for this.

  • Acupuncture – Acupuncture may help reduce the pain and maintain the bile flow that will be useful in passing the gallstones smoothly. Though even more research needs to be done on this. 

Acupuncture is a safe option, and one should look for a highly professional Acupuncturist to avoid any risk.

Other Treatments for Gallstones

Medication: Consult your doctor and start on with the prescribed medications. 

Usually, two types of bile acids are prescribed-

  • Ursodeoxycholic acid- Helped in dissolving gallstones in obese people.
  • Chenodeoxycholic acid

Gallstones may reform if you stop taking medicines in between. 

Surgery: Most often, doctors recommend surgery to people with gallstones in the gallbladder if it doesn’t pass out naturally. Laparoscopic cholecystectomy is the most common type of gallstone treatment. By making a small cut through the belly, they remove the gallbladder. A gallbladder is not needed for survival, and one can survive without it. The body can compensate for the loss of it without any significant side effects. 

Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) is used to remove the Gallstone present in the bile duct. A tube called an endoscope runs through our mouth to the small intestine, and the gallstones are removed. The process can be carried out even when the patient might not have any symptoms as such.

Preventing Gallstones

  • Have a healthy diet with high fibre and good fat.
  • Regular exercise and Yoga can lower the risk. At least exercise 3-4 days a week.
  • Avoid any diet that makes you lose a large amount of weight. Give your body time to cut out the weight.
  • Women generally are at high risk of getting gallstones. Consult your doctor before taking birth control measures to avoid risk.
  • Do not smoke or consume any drug that can harm your body more.

Gallstones can be removed easily with the proper medication and prevention if you are looking to consult a doctor, head over to the Ask Vaidya Consultation app for specialized doctor appointment online.

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