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Gallbladder Symptoms

May include any or all of the following:

  • Pain or tenderness under the rib cage on the right side
  • Pain between shoulder blades
  • Stools light or chalky colored
  • Fatty stools
  • Indigestion after eating, especially fatty or greasy foods
  • Feeling of fullness or food not digesting
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Dizziness
  • Bloating
  • Gas
  • Burping or belching
  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation or frequent use of laxatives
  • Headache over eyes, especially right
  • Bitter fluid comes up after eating

Get The Relief You Need Today
With Our Gallbladder Starter Kit!

- Deborah Graefer, L.Ac. MTOM

Deborah Graefer, L.Ac. MTOM

Deborah Graefer holds a masters degree in Traditional Oriental Medicine from Pacific College of Oriental Medicine in San Diego, CA. and has been in private practice since 1995. She has helped thousands of people to alleviate symptoms of gallbladder pain as well as chronic digestive symptoms following gallbladder removal.

Symptoms of Gallbladder Problems


People can go for years with digestive symptoms and never realize that they may be related to a problem with their gallbladder. That's because they are so interwoven with other digestive symptoms such as indigestion, gas, bloating, constipation, diarrhea and nausea and general digestive discomfort. Constipation and weight gain can also be symptoms of gallbladder problems.

There could be an infection in the gallbladder causing tenderness or the tenderness could simply be due to stasis of bile causing distention. The gallbladder could be not emptying fully (biliary dyskinesia) and lack of bile causes improper fat digestion. Or the problem could start in the liver with stasis of bile there and the formation of sludge or tiny calculi slowing bile flow and causing it to thicken. These do not necessarily cause a full-on gallbladder attack, but rather contribute to vague, uncomfortable digestive symptoms.

  • Pain or tenderness under the rib cage on the right side
  • Pain in the right shoulder
  • Pain between shoulder blades
  • Girdle pain or pressure that wraps around mid-cage
  • Pressure or fullness mid-center below the sternum
  • Nausea or Vomiting
  • Often at night
  • Frequently following a fatty meal
  • Lasts 15 mins – 4 hrs up to 24 hrs

There is Hope

The most common cause of a gallbladder attack is a gallstone that gets stuck in the neck of the gallbladder or in the cystic duct or common bile duct. The pain is caused by the bile trying to move but is unable to due to the blockage of the duct by the stone. However, the same symptoms of an attack can happen in someone with acalculous gallbladder disease (no stones) as well. A low-functioning gallbladder or a non-functioning gallbladder receives the signal to contract but cannot, resulting in pain. Sphincter of Oddi disorder and biliary hyperdyskinesia can also cause a gallbladder attack. .

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