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Gall stones. Excised gall bladder with 3 gall stones (black). Gall stones are hard masses comp- rised of cholesterol, bile & calcium salts. They form when there is a change in the chemical composition of the bile. This most commonly occurs when there is too much cholesterol in the bile. This may be triggered by infection or inflammati- on. Gall stones are often found in the overweight, & in users of oral contraceptives. Some gall stones cause symptoms, usually occurring when the stones get trapped in the bile duct. Ultrasound scanning detects 95% of gall stones. Treatment involves drugs that dissolve gall stones or removal of the gall bladder in severe cases.
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