Complications of gallstones
Gallstones are quite common in people over the age of 40. But most people don't notice them because the stones don't cause any symptoms. Treatment is usually only a good idea if there are noticeable symptoms. This is because that means there is a greater risk of complications.
The possible complications of gallstones include inflammation of the gallbladder, bile duct or pancreas. In rare cases they can lead to an obstruction (blockage) of the bowel. Very large gallstones may increase the risk of gallbladder cancer and bile duct cancer. Each year, complications occur in about 1 out of 100 people who have typical gallbladder symptoms such as colic.