According to WebMD, a distended gallbladder is most commonly caused by the blockage of the cystic duct, an outlet for the gallbladder fluids, by a gallstone. Swelling of the gallbladder can also occur without a gallstone, but this is rare and mostly occurs in people who are very sick from other conditions. If left untreated, chronic gallbladder swelling can lead to a thickening and hardening of the gallbladder walls.Know More
WebMD states that the distension of the gallbladder is also known as cholecytitis. The buildup of bile in the gallbladder when it is blocked causes swelling of the tissues and pain, and it opens the organ to infection. The pain of cholecytitis tends to be local to the upper left side of the abdomen, but it can radiate to the back or right shoulder blade. That abdominal area is often also tender to the touch or to any other increase in pressure, such as from a deep breath. Nausea and vomiting are common side effects of this condition.
Treatment for a distended gallbladder depends on the severity of the condition, according to WebMD. Careful rest, intravenous antibiotics and pain medication are often sufficient for mild cases. More severe cases require surgery, often to remove the gallbladder entirely.Learn more about Gastrointestinal Issues
A contracted gallbladder is one that is diseased and smaller than normal. The contraction of a gallbladder in such a situation typically is caused by scarring. The contraction or shrinking of a gallbladder prevents it from functioning normally.Full Answer >
Though other conditions can mimic a gallbladder attack, a person should suspect she's having one if she feels a sudden, colicky pain in the upper right abdomen, according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. The pain usually lasts several hours and occurs after heavy meals,Full Answer >
A full recovery from traditional gallbladder removal surgery, or open cholecystectomy, is four to six weeks, according to the Mayo Clinic. In contrast, typical recovery from the less invasive laparoscopic gallbladder surgery is about seven to 10 days, according to WebMD.Full Answer >
Gallbladder stones, or gallstones, can grow as large as a golf ball, according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. The gallbladder can form many small, sand-grain-sized gallstones, one large gallstone or a combination of large and small stones.Full Answer >