Gallbladder Cancer is a rare yet one of the most deadly cancers that affect the gastrointestinal region. Nowadays, it’s becoming more worrisome for the Indian medical fraternity because it has an unusual geographical distribution with hotspots across India. While it’s rarely reported in South India, the prevalence of gallbladder cancer is very high in the north and central India. Additionally, it’s the most common gastrointestinal cancer found in women. Even Indian who have migrated to different countries are more at risk of having gallbladder cancer than the respective native populations. Hence, it’s essential to become aware of this peculiar cancer and highlight the current obstacles most oncologists face in treating this cancer effectively. Read on to know more about gallbladder cancer, its symptoms and possible gallbladder cancer treatment in Udaipur.
What is Gallbladder Cancer?
It’s a rare type of cancer
that occurs when the cells inside the gallbladder start proliferating and accumulate to form a malignant tumour. These mutated cells then begin to invade nearby tissues while destroying and replacing healthy cells. The most common type of gallbladder cancer is adenocarcinoma, which usually originates in glandular cells. Fortunately, this cancer has a high recovery rate and is usually diagnosed in the early stages. However, the recovery rate significantly reduces if cancer is diagnosed in the late stages.
The gallbladder is a tiny, oblong organ located on the right side of the abdomen and below the liver. It works as a storage for the bile, which is a digestive fluid produced within the liver. Bile fluid is vital for digestion as it helps our body absorb essential fats from the human gut, which makes it more prone to form gallstones and malignant tumours. Hence, most patients prefer to have it surgically removed during their gallbladder cancer treatment hospital in Jaipur
. But the diagnosis of gallbladder and bile duct cancers are rare as they often show no particular signs or symptoms. Hence, in most cases, these cancerous tumours grow without detection due to the relatively hidden nature of the gallbladder.
What are the symptoms of gallbladder cancer?
In gallbladder cancer initial stages, most patients don’t experience any visible discomfort or symptoms. But as cancer grows over time, various symptoms start appearing. However, these early symptoms can easily be mistaken for other conditions. Hence, you need to be aware of these common symptoms and pay close attention to the following signs:
- Abdominal pain and bloating, especially in the upper right portion
- Lumps in the abdominal region
- Nausea, vomiting and slight fever
- Unexpected weight loss and anorexia
- Dark urine
- Vague abdominal symptoms
- Jaundice as skin and the whites of the eyes attain a slight yellow tinge
The prognosis of gallbladder cancer is high during its initial stages. So if you’re experiencing these signs or symptoms for a longer period, you consult with the best cancer surgeons in Udaipur
as soon as possible.
What are the common risk factors associated with gallbladder cancer?
It occurs when healthy cells of the gallbladder start mutating, which result in uncontrolled cell growth. These abnormal cells continue to live and form a tumour while other cells die as they should. And without timely intervention, these malignant tumours can spread beyond the gallbladder and metastasize into other body organs. While cell mutation is the most common cause of gallbladder cancer, other factors also increase the risk of its development. Factors that are associated with the risk of gallbladder cancer are:
- Gender as more women are affected by this cancer than men.
- Ageing as most gallbladder disorders and cancer occur in the older population.
- Chronic cholecystitis in which the gallbladder walls become calcified. Without treatment, it can cause various complications and even cancer.
- Gallbladder polyps, which are typically detected in almost 5% of adults. While most of them are benign and don’t cause any symptoms, some of them can turn cancerous over time.
- Gallbladder disorders like gallstones and bacterial infections have been linked with gallbladder cancer.
- Primary sclerosing cholangitis, which causes inflammation in the bile ducts and is strongly associated with gallbladder cancer.
What’s the most effective treatment for gallbladder cancer?
While surgery is the most definitive treatment for this cancer, oncologists also recommend other forms of treatment to improve the outcome. They will perform a Cholecystectomy, which involves removing cancer and the gallbladder using a laparoscope. It requires tiny incisions in the abdomen and ensures minimal bleeding and discomfort for the patient. Doctors may also administer chemotherapy before surgery to shrink the tumour and radiotherapy after surgery to destroy remaining cancerous cells. But we have to keep in mind that only awareness and identification can help in providing a potential cure for such diseases.