CNRI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY CNRI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Gallstone. Light micrograph of a section through tissue from the gallbladder, showing a gallstone (brown, centre right). The gallbladder stores bile, the digestive fluid produced by the liver. Gallstone formation (cholelithiasis) occurs when gallstones, hard deposits formed of cholesterol and bile salts, form from an imbalance in the composition of the bile. Gallstones are usually symptomless, unless one obstructs the bile duct, causing acute pain, jaundice and infection. Treatment is with drugs to dissolve the gallstones, or surgical removal of the gallbladder.
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