Biliary Disease

What is Biliary Disease?

Biliary Cirrhosis (PBC) or Biliary Tract disease is a state of failure of the bile ducts of the liver. A bile duct carries bile juice from the liver and gallbladder through pancreas to the small intestine. Bile is the fluid produced by the liver that helps in food digestion. It helps to get rid of worn out red blood cells, cholesterol, and toxins from the body. Bile is a dark green or yellowish brown fluid secreted by liver to digest food. A major part of bile is released by the small-intestine and rest is stored in the gall bladder. The symptoms of biliary obstruction depends on the cause of obstruction.

The primary sign of this disease is presented by a sharp penetrating pain in the upper abdomen. This disease usually develops very slowly, and taking the right kind of medication can slow its progression.


The symptoms can be abrupt and severe, or may appear slowly after years of inflammation and blockage. Bile duct disease causes symptoms related to liver products backing up and leaking into the bloodstream. Other symptoms may be non-absorption of fats and vitamins in the small intestine due to failure to deliver digestive juices. Other symptoms could include:

  • Light-colored stools and dark urine.
  • Jaundice: yellowish skin/ eyes due to buildup of waste product, bilirubin.
  • Itching (getting worse at night or in warm areas).
  • Pain in the upper right side of the abdomen.
  • Nausea and vomiting.
  • Fever, weight loss, and fatigue.
  • Loss of appetite.



Some of the most probable causes include:

  • Inflammation in the bile ducts.
  • After effects of liver surgery or injury.
  • Gallbladder injury or surgery.
  • Pancreatitis.
  • Biliary stricture (abnormal narrowing of the duct).
  • Trauma



The main risk factors are:

  • Gallstones history.
  • Chronic pancreatitis.
  • Recurrent tumors in the right part of the abdomen.
  • An injury to the right part of the abdomen.
  • Obesity.
  • Rapid weight loss.



To prevent the occurrence of this disease, there are certain things one should take care of:

  • Taking a healthy diet, and having a good sleep.
  • Exercising regularly.
  • Avoiding stress and anxiety.
  • Avoid smoking.

How is it diagnosed?

At Medanta, various tests are available for people suffering with biliary obstruction:


How is it treated?

At Medanta, the treatment of the disease is aligned with its underlying cause as diagnosed. However, to treat such blockage doctors at initial stages recommend:


  • Antibiotics

    Antibiotics are used to subside possible infections.

  • Lifestyle changes

    Patient, if overweight, to manage their weight and adopt a healthy lifestyle.

  • Surgery

    The treatment involves either substituting a missing part of the bile duct or rerouting the bile drainage.

When do I contact the doctor?

A person should immediately consult a doctor if he/she realises yellowing of the eyes/skin along with fever or abdominal pain. Early consultation with the doctor is totally going to subside the symptoms of the disease that you have.

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