Gall Bladder Infection
Causes And Symptoms Of Gallbladder Infection
A gall bladder infection is sometimes serious, but usually not, and is normally easily treated. The gall bladder is an important organ insofar as the functioning of our digestive system is concerned. It is not a vital organ, since we can live without one, and surgery to remove a person's gallbladder is not all that uncommon. Some organs in our body, like the appendix, seem to be there only to cause problems but otherwise are not seen to provide any useful function. The gallbladder does provide a useful function however, and although we can live without one, we're definitely better off having one. When an appendix becomes infected, it usually must be taken out, and it's a matter of good riddance. A gallbladder infection however can usually be cured and the organ kept intact, which is the preferred outcome.
The gallbladder is an organ located just beneath the liver, which is used to store bile, a secretion which is produced in the liver for the purpose of helping us to digest fat. Bile contains among other things, of salts, cholesterol, and calcium. On occasion these elements may crystallize, forming hard, solid stones called gallstones, a potential source of most common types of gallbladder infection.
Acute Cholecystitis - Although there are many ways an infection can occur in one of our bodily organs, as far as the gallbladder is concerned, acute cholecystitis is by far the most common type of gallbladder infection. This condition is the result of the most common gallbladder disorder, the formation of gallstones. Gallstones in themselves are not infectious, but bring with them their own set of potential problems. They can however cause irritation in the gallbladder, and if this irritation becomes acute, an infection may set in.
Gallbladder Infection Symptoms - If a gallbladder infection sets in, the symptoms usually consist of a pain that is normally felt in the upper abdomen, spreading as far as the right shoulder blade. The pain in some instances may be more localized, and felt beneath the rib cage on the right side. The pain may at first be sporadic, but then become more severe and constant. In the case of infection or an acute inflammation, a fever will often develop, and the area under the ribs will become quite tender.
Since these symptoms are often caused by other disorders, a gallbladder infection is not necessarily the first thing that comes to mind. Bloating of the abdomen, nausea, or a frequent passing of gas narrows down the diagnosis however, and if these symptoms accompany the pain, a doctor should be seen immediately. Of course anytime abdominal pain becomes severe, a doctor should be consulted, and home remedies should not be overly relied upon.
Antibiotics The Usual Treatment - Treatment may be as simple as prescribing antibiotics. In the case of a very severe infection, or if gallstones are present and are also creating problems, surgery may be the best choice, in which case the gallbladder will usually be removed. The liver will continue to produce bile as needed, though the body's ability to store it in the same quantities as before will have been lost. This may require some changes in one's dietary habits, but these changes are usually not drastic. If gallbladder inflammation or infection has become chronic, a person who has had their gallbladder removed will usually find the choice of foods they can eat without suffering discomfort has increased, rather than decreased.
The formation of gallstones occurs much more frequently in women than in men. Consequently, the chances of getting a gallbladder infection are also greater for women. Any dietary or lifestyle practices which will lessen the chance of one developing gallstones will of course correspondingly lessen the chance of coming down with gallbladder inflammation or infection.