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Gallstones and obesity

BMJ Group Medical Reference

Gallstones are hard lumps that get stuck in your gallbladder. They can be painful and you may need to surgery to remove them. [53]

People who are obese are two to three times more likely to get gallstones than people who are a healthy weight. [46] Doctors aren't really sure why people who are overweight get gallstones.


gall bladder

The gall bladder is a small organ below the liver on the right side of the abdomen. Its job is to store bile, a chemical made in the liver that helps to break down food in the intestines. The chemicals in the gall bladder can, under certain circumstances, become solid and form small stones. If a stone gets stuck in the tubes that empty the gall bladder, there can be a backup of fluid, causing the gall bladder to swell and possibly become infected. This condition is called gall bladder disease.


If your body stores more energy than you need, this can make you overweight. The excess energy is stored in your fat cells. If your weight goes above a certain level, doctors call this obesity. Obesity is considered a medical condition. The excess weight can be a strain on your bones and joints. And if you are obese, you're more likely to get other diseases. Doctors have developed a scale for telling how much excess weight you have. This measure, called the body mass index (BMI), depends on your height.

For more terms related to Obesity


For references related to Obesity click here.
Last Updated: June 21, 2012
This information does not replace medical advice.  If you are concerned you might have a medical problem please ask your Boots pharmacy team in your local Boots store, or see your doctor.

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