- What is gallbladder cancer?
- What are risk factors for gallbladder cancer?
- What are symptoms and signs of gallbladder cancer?
- What exams and tests are used to diagnose gallbladder cancer?
- What factors affects the prognosis for gallbladder cancer?
- How is the staging of gallbladder cancer determined?
- What is the treatment for gallbladder cancer?
- Where can people get more information about gallbladder cancer?
- Find a local Oncologist in your town
Gallbladder cancer is a disease in which malignant (cancer) cells form in the tissues of the gallbladder.
Gallbladder cancer is a rare disease in which malignant (cancer) cells are found in the tissues of the gallbladder. The gallbladder is a pear-shaped organ that lies just under the liver in the upper abdomen. The gallbladder stores bile, a fluid made by the liver to digest fat. When food is being broken down in the stomach and intestines, bile is released from the gallbladder through a tube called the common bile duct, which connects the gallbladder and liver to the first part of the small intestine.
The wall of the gallbladder has 3 main layers of tissue.
- Mucosal (innermost) layer.
- Muscularis (middle, muscle) layer.
- Serosal (outer) layer.
Between these layers is supporting connective tissue. Primary gallbladder cancer starts in the innermost layer and spreads through the outer layers as it grows.
Being female can increase the risk of developing gallbladder cancer.
Anything that increases your chance of getting a disease is called a risk factor. Risk factors for gallbladder cancer include the following:
- Being female.
- Being Native American.
Possible signs of gallbladder cancer include jaundice, pain, and fever.
These and other symptoms may be caused by gallbladder cancer. Other conditions may cause the same symptoms. A doctor should be consulted if any of the following problems occur:
- Jaundice (yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes).
- Pain above the stomach.
- Nausea and vomiting.
- Lumps in the abdomen.
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