Your gallbladder is a pear-shaped organ under your liver. It stores bile, a fluid made by your liver to digest fat. As your stomach and intestines digest food, your gallbladder releases bile through a tube called the common bile duct. The duct connects your gallbladder and liver to your small intestine.
Your gallbladder is most likely to give you trouble if something blocks the flow of bile through the bile ducts. That is usually a gallstone. Gallstones form when substances in bile harden. Rarely, you can also get cancer in your gallbladder.
Many gallbladder problems get better with removal of the gallbladder. Fortunately, you can live without a gallbladder. Bile has other ways of reaching your small intestine.
- Biliary Tract Disorders, Gallbladder Disorders, and Gallstone Pancreatitis (American College of Gastroenterology) Also in Spanish
- Gallbladder and Bile Duct Disorders (Merck & Co., Inc.)
Diagnosis and Tests
- Abdominal Ultrasound (American College of Radiology, Radiological Society of North America) Also in Spanish
- ERCP (Endoscopic Retrograde Cholangiopancreatography) (National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases) Also in Spanish
- Hepatobiliary (American College of Radiology, Radiological Society of North America)
- Understanding EUS (Endoscopic Ultrasonography) (American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy) Also in Spanish
Treatments and Therapies
- Cholecystectomy: Surgical Removal of the Gallbladder (American College of Surgeons) - PDF Also in Spanish
- Gallbladder Removal: Laparoscopic Method (American Academy of Family Physicians) Also in Spanish
- Understanding ERCP (Endoscopic Retrograde Cholangiopancreatography) (American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy) Also in Spanish
- Sphincter of Oddi Dysfunction (International Foundation for Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders)
Health Check Tools
- Abdominal Pain (DSHI Systems)
Videos and Tutorials
- Digestive System: The Inside Story (Johns Hopkins Medicine)
Journal Articles References and abstracts from MEDLINE/PubMed (National Library of Medicine)
- Article: Percutaneous transhepatic gallbladder drainage followed by elective laparoscopic cholecystectomy for...
- Article: Comparison of the composition of bile acids in bile of...
- Article: Prediction of difficult laparoscopic cholecystectomy for acute cholecystitis.
- Gallbladder Diseases -- see more articles
- Gallbladder and Biliary Tract (Merck & Co., Inc.)
- Acute cholecystitis (Medical Encyclopedia) Also in Spanish
- Bilirubin - urine (Medical Encyclopedia) Also in Spanish
- Chronic cholecystitis (Medical Encyclopedia) Also in Spanish
- Gallbladder removal - laparoscopic (Medical Encyclopedia) Also in Spanish
- Gallbladder removal - laparoscopic - discharge (Medical Encyclopedia) Also in Spanish
- Gallbladder removal - open (Medical Encyclopedia) Also in Spanish