How is an ultrasound of the gallbladder done

Digestive problems can affect everyone. In the presence of characteristic symptoms of the disease, a doctor’s consultation is necessary. A competent specialist will help determine the cause of the gallbladder problem and prescribe the appropriate treatment. For the most specific diagnosis, specialists often prescribe an ultrasound of the gallbladder, the price varies depending on the region. This type of research not only contributes to the most accurate diagnosis, but also helps to identify the individual properties of the scanned tissue.

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Indications to ultrasound of the gallbladder

A patient complaining of pain localized in the right hypochondrium, prolonged bitterness in the oral cavity for no apparent reason is the reason for an ultrasound examination of the abdominal organs. Thanks to the ultrasound of the gallbladder and ducts, a disease characteristic of this organ, cholecystitis, is determined – a form of complicated course of gallstone disease. With a given outcome of the disease, it stops working due to the fact that its tissues are replaced by cicatricial ones, the size of the organ gradually decreases, and as a result, the walls are flattened and the flow of secreted secretion through it becomes impossible. As the body adapts to its absence, a disconnected gallbladder can cause additional problems and must be removed in a resectable way.
The operation to remove the gallbladder is called cholecystectomy and its necessity is due to the fact that this organ ceases to perform its function. Patients who have it removed must adhere to certain rules, including undergoing regular examination in the postoperative period. An ultrasound scan after removal of the gallbladder should be performed regularly for monitoring purposes.

An additional reason to undergo an ultrasound examination in the postoperative period will be a number of signs, such as nausea, prolonged dizziness, and persistence of pain in the right hypochondrium. Additional indications for observation are the untimely performance of the operation itself and the presence of a number of concomitant diseases of the gastrointestinal tract, pathological changes in the biliary tract, diseases in the liver and pancreas. In the presence of chronic pathologies, for example, forms of hepatitis, regular ultrasound examination of the bile storage reservoir in the body is also necessary.

Determination of the function of the gallbladder is carried out by ultrasound. The procedure is aimed at measuring the parameters of the organ and the subsequent assessment of the condition, which allows detecting diseases inside the cavity. Ultrasound allows you to identify the degree of contractility of the organ and the cause of possible violations of this process. When planning pregnancy, studies are carried out using an ultrasound method, since the use of other methods is difficult due to the pressure of the components of the abdominal cavity against each other. Ultrasound examinations are carried out in the bodies of expectant mothers for the reason that during this period the symptoms of a problem with the gallbladder can be mistaken for toxicosis.


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In order to do an ultrasound of the gallbladder, the patient undergoes certain training. 2-3 days before it is necessary to follow the diet and take special drugs to liquefy gases inside, which condition the preliminary preparation of the intestines in order to avoid flatulence, which makes it difficult to examine the abdominal cavity. Including the use of hard drinks during the diet is prohibited. Stop eating food 8 hours before the procedure.
Immediately before the study, the intestines must be emptied.

The ultrasound process, including ultrasound of the gallbladder with the definition of its function, is performed in 4 steps and takes an hour or a little more in time. Before preparing for the first procedure, you should not eat, since when food enters the gastrointestinal tract, bile is released from the bladder.

One of the purposes of ultrasound is to identify the size of an organ in order to find out its maximum size for further diagnosis, the examination is performed on an empty stomach, and it is also prohibited to drink water for the patient for the purity of the study. After the first stage, the patient takes a test breakfast, which can consist of two boiled yolks or 250 ml of fermented milk products. After 10 minutes, the third procedure is performed, in 15 minutes the final stage of ultrasound examination takes place.

Ultrasound options

Endoscopic ultrasound differs from the usual one in that it allows you to examine the organ of interest while being in close proximity to it. An endoscope is used to conduct it. This frequency sensitive device is equipped with a miniature transducer. Endoscopy is one of the more accurate options for conducting ultrasound of the gallbladder.
Endoscopic ultrasonography of the gallbladder at the maximum possible height of the frequency of the operating transducer is able to establish the diagnosis in maximum detail. Examination of the child’s organs by this method is carried out with the same dietary system; in order to obtain an accurate result, it must be controlled. The exception is infants, for whom an ultrasound examination of the gallbladder is performed before feeding or 3 hours after it.

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With function definition

Ultrasound of the gallbladder with determination of function takes place in several stages, this type of ultrasound is sometimes called ultrasound with a functional test. This procedure determines the ability of the contractile function of the gallbladder, and to understand whether it is normal or contains pathology. In case of dysfunction of the gallbladder through this type of ultrasound of the abdominal cavity, the disease can be controlled.

With load

An ultrasound of the gallbladder with a load must be performed in several stages. The first step of the study is carried out on an empty stomach, then the patient eats a light breakfast, which serves as a nutritional load. The presence of food in the body, provoking the secretion of bile, makes it possible to most accurately identify the area of ​​localization of the problem in the bile duct, which can impede the passage of bile into the duodenum.

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Deciphering the results of ultrasound of the gallbladder

Indications ultrasound of the gallbladder is deciphered by the doctor immediately after the procedure. Having considered the results of the study, the specialist evaluates the location and movement of the organ, the shape, length, wall thickness and the work of the contractile function. Normally, the length of the auxiliary organ of the digestive system is from 7 to 10 cm, the width is 3-5 cm, and the wall thickness is 4 mm. Its shape is pear-shaped or oval, the edge of a healthy organ protrudes 1-1,5 cm from the liver.

With the help of ultrasound techniques, the presence of the disease is diagnosed. The information obtained about the communicating ducts will reveal the diameter of the common bile duct and its possible deviation from the norm. In a healthy person, the internal diameter of the common bile duct according to the results of ultrasound has a norm from 2 mm to 8 mm in its widest part. The doctor will explain what the ultrasound of the gallbladder shows, in this case the decoding should be given as accurately as possible, because this organ plays a leading role in the transport of hormones of the endocrine system of the human body.

Also, this procedure can alert the patient about possible lime deposits in the organ, which later become the cause of the formation of stones. The lack of timely diagnosis of this disease leads to the fact that these dense calcareous bodies become an obstacle in the ducts of the bladder and worsen the outflow of bile.

Through ultrasound studies, it is possible to establish heterogeneity in the composition of bile and see the location of the biliary sludge – a dense accumulation of calcium salts and proteins. A sclerosed gallbladder can appear as a result of cholecystitis, with a particularly advanced form of the course of the disease. During the course of the disease, the walls of the gallbladder are deformed, form folds, partitions, and as a result, all this forms an accumulation of scar tissue. Such a body cannot perform its former functions and, due to its uselessness, is surgically removed.

An ultrasound test determines the presence of calculi or, in other words, stones between the walls. This pathology can be located both in the cavity of the organ, and in the ducts that form it, any of its manifestations threatens the normal functioning. The ability to determine the size of the stone exists with ultrasound.

The most important characteristic of the gallbladder is its contractility. After conducting an ultrasound scan, the specialist fixes the moment in time from which the contraction began and the ratio of its size in the reduced position to the size of its full volume. The study of the gallbladder for children has a strictly individual character, since the normal parameters of the parameters vary from the height, age, level of development of the child.

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Prices for ultrasound

Anyone worried about the state of the gallbladder or its ducts is worried about how much an ultrasound scan costs. Prices for this procedure may vary. Usually, the cost of an ultrasound scan includes a cumulative study of other abdominal organs, which, according to the endocrinologist, is necessary to make an accurate diagnosis. After decoding the result, the doctor makes a conclusion about the state of the gallbladder, after which he makes a medical conclusion.
For the most objective assessment of the organ’s work, it is better to prepare well for the procedure, otherwise it will not bring a reliable result. A clearer picture when decoding will make it possible to make a joint ultrasound not only of the gallbladder, but also of the other organs of the digestive system: the liver with the pancreas, since they are directly related to each other. A multidisciplinary medical institution with the necessary modern equipment will help to conduct a comprehensive ultrasound examination.

The percentage of cases of a successful outcome of the disease began to increase after the more and more frequent use of ultrasound in the diagnosis of pathologies in recent years. This procedure greatly simplifies the doctor’s work, since it provides him with information about the organs, which cannot be recognized with the help of the “naked” eye.


How to prepare for a gallbladder ultrasound? Gallbladder ultrasound

Tatyana Jakowenko

Editor-in-chief of the Detonic online magazine, cardiologist Yakovenko-Plahotnaya Tatyana. Author of more than 950 scientific articles, including in foreign medical journals. He has been working as a cardiologist in a clinical hospital for over 12 years. He owns modern methods of diagnosis and treatment of cardiovascular diseases and implements them in his professional activities. For example, it uses methods of resuscitation of the heart, decoding of ECG, functional tests, cyclic ergometry and knows echocardiography very well.

For 10 years, she has been an active participant in numerous medical symposia and workshops for doctors - families, therapists and cardiologists. He has many publications on a healthy lifestyle, diagnosis and treatment of heart and vascular diseases.

He regularly monitors new publications of European and American cardiology journals, writes scientific articles, prepares reports at scientific conferences and participates in European cardiology congresses.