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Q. For gallstone problem, should I get my gallbladder removed?

Answered by
Dr. Naresh Kumar Monigari
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Jul 12, 2016 and last reviewed on: May 27, 2020

Hi doctor,

I have aches on the right side of the upper and lower abdomen as well as in the back that is below my shoulder blade. These aches have got worse over time in the past seven months. My doctor informed me that I have gallstones and that is the cause of my aches and pains. He said that I should get it removed. I hope not. Please take a quick look at my sonogram and tell me what you think of my situation. Thank you.

Dr. Naresh Kumar Monigari

General Medicine Internal Medicine


Welcome to

I had gone through all the details posted.

  • From the images posted (attachment removed to protect patient identity), there is mild distension of the gallbladder can be noted, but the exact size of the gallstone is not seen clearly.
  • Kindly upload the official report of the ultrasound scan done.
  • The treatment for gallstones depends upon the size of the stone. If size is more than 10 mm or multiple stones, then it is better to go for surgery as the size is unlikely to reduce and fall off on its own. Also, the chance of development of acute cholecystitis is more.
  • If size is less than 6 mm, then we can try with medical dissolution therapy. With medical therapy the rate of decrease in size is 0.5 mm per month of therapy.
  • Remaining all blood investigations were within the normal range except Hb (hemoglobin), which is slightly low.
  • Hb low with high MCV (mean corpuscular volume) suggests vitamin B12 deficiency or hypothyroidism.
  • Kindly tell me whether you drink alcohol.
  • Do you eat non-vegetarian food? Did you check your thyroid profile?

Revert back with the answers to the above questions to an internal medicine physician online -->

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Thank you doctor,

Only these images were given to me by my doctor. I am a vegan. I do not eat meat, eggs or dairy products. I do not drink alcohol. I am a non-smoker for the entire life. I did have gas during the scans because I drank apple cider vinegar and water. I did not think it would affect me. That is probably the reason for the muddy scans. I can get new scans. I did not check my thyroid profile.

Dr. Naresh Kumar Monigari

General Medicine Internal Medicine


Welcome back to

  • I had gone through all the images uploaded (attachment removed to protect patient identity). The most of the images uploaded shows liver and gallbladder to the extent visualized; I feel there are multiple small stones.
  • Multiple small stone carries risk of gallstone induced pancreatitis so it is better to get surgery done before complications arise.
  • The second thing is anemia (low Hb) may be because of vitamin B12 deficiency. Kindly get serum vitamin B12 levels and thyroid profile.
  • If vitamin B12 deficiency is found, then you need to take medication for that.

Probable diagnosis:

Cholelithiasis and vitamin B12 deficiency.

Regarding follow up:

For further doubts consult an internal medicine physician online.--->

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