Clinical and ultrasonographic risk factors associated with asymptomatic gallstones in women

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate ultrasonographic and clinical variables such as the presence or absence of bile sludge, thickness of the gallbladder wall, transverse measurement of the gallbladder, age, parity, and presence or absence of diabetes mellitus, and to determine the prevalence of asymptomatic gallstones in female patients submitted to ultrasonographic examination. MATERIALS AND METHODS: We conducted a prospective study involving 265 female patients attending at the "Escola de Ultra-sonografia e Reciclagem Médica de Ribeirão Preto", São Paulo, Brazil, during the period from January to September, 2001. RESULTS: There was a statistically significant difference in gallstones and gallbladder wall thickness, bile sludge, transverse gallbladder diameter, age, parity, with a 4.1% among nulliparous women and a 39.1% in multiparous women and diabetic women. The prevalence of gallstones in asymptomatic patients was 14.7%. CONCLUSION: Asymptomatic gallstones in women were mainly related to age and parity. The most frequently detected ultrasonographic findings were the presence of bile sludge and thickening of the gallbladder wall.

Gallstones; Asymptomatic women; Ultrasonography

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