cholesterol and other substances in the
bile form crystals that become hard stones in the
gallbladder. The gallbladder is a small sac located just under the liver.
Gallstones can occur when your gallbladder does not empty properly or if you
have too much cholesterol in your bile. Too much cholesterol in your bile is
not caused by eating too much cholesterol or having high cholesterol (in the
Most doctors believe that even microscopic gallstones in
the gallbladder can cause symptoms. These tiny stones can form a type of
biliary sludge that often can be seen on an abdominal
ultrasound. For more information on an abdominal ultrasound, see the Exams and
Tests section of this topic.
In this article
This information is produced and provided by the National
Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National
Institute via the Internet web site at http://
.gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.
WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise
August 05, 2013
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor.
Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this