What is Cholecystitis?
What is Cholecystitis? Cholecystitis is inflammation in the gallbladder. The gallbladder is an organ that stores bile, a fluid that plays an important role in the digestion of fat in the body.
This inflammation can occur suddenly (acut) and long-term (chronic). Acute cholecystitis mostly occurs due to blockage in the bile ducts. While chronic cholecystitis is a condition of bile inflammation after acute chronic repeated cholecystitis and is a severe form of acute cholecystitis.
Symptoms of Cholecystitis
The main symptom of cholecystitis is severe pain in the upper right abdomen that lasts for several hours. This pain tends to arise after eating foods (especially fatty ones) and can spread to the right shoulder or backbone. In addition to pain, inflammation is also sometimes accompanied by the following symptoms:
- The pain gets worse when you take a deep breath.
- The right stomach ached when touched.
- Nausea and vomiting.
- No appetite.
If you experience sudden, high-sick abdominal pain, check with your doctor immediately. Especially when the pain lasts for hours, accompanied by other symptoms, and hinders your daily activities.
Causes of Cholecystitis
Most cholecystitis is caused by bile fluid collected in the gallbladder due to the presence of gallstones clogging the bile ducts. It is estimated that about nine out of 10 cases of cholecystitis are due to these factors. This blockage will trigger irritation and pressure on the gallbladder which then leads to swelling and infection.
However, there are also people with cholecystitis who experience inflammation due to other factors. Some of these are due to complications from other serious illnesses, infections, or damage to the gallbladder. For example due to unintentional gallbladder damage during surgery, sepsis, AIDS, or severe malnutrition.
Diagnosis of Cholecystitis
Your doctor will ask you about your symptoms, your overall health condition, and your medical history.
The first step to diagnosing this disease is through examination of your stomach condition. Murphy’s sign test, the doctor’s hand pressing the stomach under the right ribs when the patient inhales, the gallbladder shifts and touches the pressure of the hand. When suddenly strong pain, then said positive suffering from cholecystitis.
If you suspect you have cholecystitis, your doctor will suggest further investigation steps to confirm the diagnosis. Some of these tests and checks include:
- Blood tests to check for any indications of inflammation or infection.
- Ultrasound or CT scan with a contrast agent on the abdomen to check for the presence or absence of disruption in the gallbladder structure or blockage of the bile ducts.
Treatment and Complications of Cholecystitis
Steps to treatment of cholecystitis needed each patient is different. This difference is determined based on the severity of symptoms experienced as well as the overall health condition of the patient.
Mild cholecystitis can usually be treated at home. However, you should stay in hospital for inflammation in the gallbladder to be monitored and handled thoroughly. The steps needed in handling include:
- Fasting or low-fat diet to reduce the burden of the gallbladder.
- Receive fluids through an IV to avoid dehydration.
- The use of drugs, such as painkillers and antibiotics to deal with infections.
Cholestitis has the potential to re-occur. Therefore, doctors usually recommend surgery to remove the gallbladder or medical term is called cholecystectomy. This procedure also aims to reduce the risk of serious complications in people with cholestitis.
There are two types of cholecystectomy that can be undertaken by the patient, namely laparoscopic cholecystectomy and open incision cholecystectomy. Laparoscopic cholecystectomy is performed through a small incision so that the recovery period of the patient tends to be faster than that of open incision cholecystectomy. Therefore, laparoscopic cholecystectomy is more often recommended.
The gallbladder is functional but not a vital organ. However, our bodies can survive without these organs. The liver will still remove the bile to help digest the fat even without the help of gallbladder.
Untreated cholecystitis has the potential to trigger serious complications that can even be fatal. The tissue of dead and decaying gallbladder (gangrene) as well as rupture of the gallbladder are the major complications that can occur. Both can spread serious infections in other parts of the body.
Prevention of Cholecystitis
Cholecystitis can not be prevented completely, especially the acute. But the risk can still be reduced by applying the same steps with preventing gallstones.
Applying a healthy lifestyle is the main method to avoid the emergence of gallstones, for example by maintaining a healthy weight and ideal. If you want to lose weight, do it gradually. Practicing a healthy and balanced diet can also help you to prevent this condition.