Gallstones. Ultrasound scan of gallstones (white, upper centre) in a patient's gall bladder (marked by the dark grey boundary around the gallstones). Gallstones are hard deposits of cholesterol or bile salts that may cause acute pain. The gall bladder stores bile, a digestive secretion from the liver, and passes it into the digestive tract. If treatment is required, ultrasound may be used to break up the stones, or surgery carried out to remove them, or chemical means used to dissolve them. Ultrasound scanning uses reflected high- frequency sound waves to image internal body tissues.
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