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an inflammation of the gallbladder that frequently occurs in cholelithiasis (commonly known as gallstone disease), after viral hepatitis and other infectious diseases, and in the presence of a chronic focal infection (such as tonsillitis) or parasitic disease (such as opisthorchosis).
Stoppages or changes in the composition of the bile, which may be related to a person’s diet, are contributing factors in cholecystitis. The condition often occurs in conjunction with cholangitis. Cholecystitis may be acute or chronic. In the acute form, the main symptoms are intermittent pain in the right abdomen radiating to the right shoulder and shoulder blade, nausea and vomiting, chills and elevated body temperature, and sometimes jaundice and pruritus. Peritonitis is a possible dangerous complication of acute cholecystitis. The symptoms of chronic cholecystitis are nausea, a dull pain in the right hypochondrium, and other disagreeable sensations after eating. Laboratory tests and cholecystocholangiograms are important means of diagnosing cholecystitis.
Conservative treatment of cholecystitis and other inflammatory diseases of the biliary tract is aimed chiefly at suppressing the infection (by means of antibiotics and other antimicrobial agents) and increasing the outflow of bile (by special diet, cholagogues and antispasmodics, duodenal probing, and mineral waters such as Borzhom and Essentuki no. 4). Foods that are mechanically or chemically irritating are eliminated from the diet. In the case of acute cholecystitis, surgery is resorted to when conservative therapy is ineffectual. If the disease is chronic, an operation (cholecystectomy) is performed if indicated in the given case after a careful and comprehensive examination of the patient. An operation is not indicated for functional disturbances of the gallbladder (biliary dyskenesia).
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V. R. ANAKHASIAN