Biliary Dyskinesia

Overview of Biliary Dyskinesia

Biliary dyskinesia is a condition characterized by the abnormal functioning of the gallbladder. The gallbladder is an organ located just underneath the liver that stores and concentrates bile, a substance produced by the liver to breakdown fats. In biliary dyskinesia, the gallbladder is unable to properly contract and release bile. This can cause several symptoms, such as pain, nausea, digestive issues, and indigestion.

In some cases, biliary dyskinesia may cause more severe consequences such as inflammation of the gallbladder, gallstones, and pancreatitis as bile accumulates in the gallbladder. Biliary dyskinesia can be caused by a variety of factors including chronic gallbladder inflammation, medication side effects, and genetics. Women are more likely to have biliary dyskinesia than men and biliary dyskinesia can occur at any age.

Symptoms of Biliary Dyskinesia

The most common symptoms of biliary dyskinesia are:

  • Pain in the upper right side of the abdomen
  • Nausea
  • Burping
  • Indigestion
  • Bloating
  • Diarrhea or constipation
  • Jaundice (yellowing of skin and eyes)
  • Fever

These symptoms can be debilitating and make it difficult to do normal, everyday tasks. If these symptoms are recurrent, you should contact your doctor.

Diagnosis of Biliary Dyskinesia

Your doctor will likely perform a variety of tests to diagnose biliary dyskinesia including blood tests, urine tests, and imaging tests such as an ultrasound. Additionally, they may perform a cholecystokinin (CCK) test, which is a procedure used to measure the activity of the gallbladder. This test requires you to drink a liquid containing CCK and then X-ray images are taken to observe the gallbladder’s activity.

Treatment of Biliary Dyskinesia

The primary treatment of biliary dyskinesia is dietary and lifestyle modifications such as reducing consumption of fat, eating smaller meals, and exercising regularly. Your doctor may also recommend medications such as antacids and proton pump inhibitors. In very severe cases, surgery may be necessary to remove the gallbladder.