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On occasion a stone from the gallbladder may slip down the pipe that leads from the gallbladder into the pipe (duct) that leads into the small bowel. There it may cause obstruction to the normal flow of bile, leading to jaundice, back pressure on the liver and abnormal liver function tests (LFTs).

Often biliary colic, a descriptive term for the pain experienced when a gallstone slips into the common bile duct, presents with similar but more severe and prolonged pain than that experienced with cholecystitis. Pain is often provoked by eating, particularly fatty foods and may be associated with nausea, vomiting and the development of jaundice (a yellow colouring often seen in the eyes or skin.

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