Alternate Names : Cholecystitis – chronic
Chronic cholecystitis is long-standing swelling and irritation of the gallbladder.
Overview, Causes, & Risk Factors
Chronic cholecystitis is usually caused by repeated attacks of acute cholecystitis. This leads to thickening of the gallbladder walls. The gallbladder begins to shrink and eventually loses the ability to perform its function, which is concentrating, storing, and releasing bile.
The disease occurs more often in women than in men. The incidence increases after age 40. The main risk factors include the presence of gallstones (in which case, the symptoms are due to gallstones).
Pictures & Images
Cholecystitis, CT scan
This is a CT scan of the upper abdomen showing cholecystitis (gall stones).
Cholelithiasis can be seen on a cholangiogram. Radio-opaque dye is used to enhance the x-ray. Multiple stones are present in the gallbladder (PTCA).
Cholecystolithiasis. CT scan of the upper abdomen showing multiple gallstones.
A cholecystogram in a patient with gallstones.
Review Date : 3/5/2009
Reviewed By : David C. Dugdale, III, Professor of Medicine, Division of General Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine; and George F. Longstreth, MD, Department of Gastroenterology, Kaiser Permanente Medical Care Program, San Diego, CA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.