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How to Prevent Gallstones

Updated: Tuesday, Jun 30,2009, 12:07:24 PM
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An important note to anyone with kidney stones is to avoid cold foods or drinks. Cold drinks chill your internal organs and weaken them, especially the kidneys and spleen. Many of my clients told me that they can feel the chilling effect from cold drinks after several months of not having them. Foods that weaken the kidneys should also be avoided. They include all citrus fruits, tomato and banana.

It would be better if gallstones could be prevented rather than treated. Prevention of cholesterol gallstones is feasible since ursodiol, the bile acid medication that dissolves some cholesterol gallstones, also prevents them from forming. The difficulty is identifying a group of individuals who are at high risk for developing cholesterol gallstones during a relatively short period of time so that the duration of preventive treatment can be limited. One such group is obese individuals losing weight rapidly with very low calorie diets or with surgery. The risk of gallstones in this group is as high as 40-60%. In fact, ursodiol has been shown in several studies to be very effective at preventing gallstones in these individuals.


Gallstones form when substances in the bile harden.

Gallstones are more common among older adults, women, Native Americans, Mexican Americans, and people who are overweight.

Symptoms can mimic those of other problems, including heart attack, so accurate diagnosis is important.

Gallstone attacks often occur after eating a meal.

Laparoscopic surgery to remove the gallbladder is the most common treatment.

Gallstones can cause serious problems if they become trapped in the bile ducts.



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