Gallstones: Causes & Symptoms

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People who have been experiencing severe pain in their upper abdominal region or in their shoulder blades for either long or sometimes short periods of time should get themselves checked for gallstones.

What are Gallstones?

Gallstones are hardened formations of digestive fluid or cholesterol that form in your gallbladder. The gallbladder is a small pouch-like organ that is located just below the liver and that stores bile, a greenish-yellow digestive liquid. Gallstones can vary in size ranging from being as tiny as a grain of sand to as large as a golf ball. While some have just one gallstone, others may have multiple stones at once.



Here are the top causes of the formation of gallstones:

  • Pregnancy: Generally, women are prone to developing gallstones because many of them get pregnant several times over the course of their life and also suffer from other troubles like obesity. During pregnancy, an imbalance of hormones, especially estrogen, occurs in the female body, which is one of the prime causes behind the development of gallstones.
  • Cholesterol levels: If an individual regularly consumes an excessive amount of junk foods, the cholesterol level of their body goes up, which leads to the formation of gallstones.
  • Aging and fasting: These are other causes of this problem.


These stones may not always cause symptoms, but if they get lodged in a duct and block it, they could lead to the following symptoms:

  • Pain: The pain of gallstones is generally experienced in specific regions of the body like the upper abdomen, shoulder blades, and the back.
  • Digestive distress: The patient might also suffer from several vomiting bouts and chronic indigestion.
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