Symptoms of Gallbladder Inflammation (Acute Calculous and Acalculous Cholecystitis)
Between 1 and 3% of people with symptomatic gallstones develop inflammation in the gallbladder (acute cholecystitis), which occurs when stones or sludge block the duct. The symptoms are similar to those of biliary colic but are more persistent and severe. They include the following:
* Pain in the upper right abdomen that is severe and constant, and may last for days. Pain frequently increases when drawing a breath.
* Pain may also radiate to the back or occur under the shoulder blades, behind the breast bone, or on the left side.
* About a third of patients have fever and chills.
* Nausea and vomiting may occur.
Anyone who experiences such symptoms should seek medical attention. Acute cholecystitis can progress to gangrene or perforation of the gallbladder if left untreated. Infection develops in about 20% of patients with acute cholecystitis, and increases the danger from this condition. People with diabetes are at particular risk for serious complications.
Symptoms of Chronic Cholecystitis or Dysfunctional Gallbladders