Health and MedicineDiseasesCholangitis (biliary sepsis): what is it, causes, symptoms and treatment?

Cholangitis (biliary sepsis): what is it, causes, symptoms and treatment?

What is cholangitis, also known as biliary sepsis or acute ascending cholangitis, what symptoms does it produce, what are its causes and how is it treated.

With the name of cholangitis (also known medically as biliary sepsis or simply as acute ascending cholangitis) we are faced with an infection of the entire channel that connects the small intestine with the liver, causing all kinds of eruptions and obstructions in this area that can even later lead to the appearance of stones on this road.

The most common causes for which anyone can suffer from ascites have to do with a bacterium that is responsible for blocking the duct and therefore the secretion of bile, a substance that is responsible for better digesting the components of any food.

This whole process can get worse and worse, and can even spread to other organs such as the liver, which can later lead to the appearance of small tumors and even cancer, as well as other liver diseases.

Symptoms of cholangitis or biliary sepsis

Once this is known, it is important to know well what the symptoms can be that can tell us if a person suffers from ascites. That way it will be much easier to act as soon as possible:

  • Fever and chills. All those people who suffer from cholangitis may seem to be going through a flu process since they may have chills throughout the day accompanied by a high fever.
  • Pain in any area of ​​the abdomen. Cholangitis can cause the patient to suffer from severe abdominal pain. They can also appear in other areas of the body such as the back or shoulder blade.
  • Jaundice pictures. Jaundice is a symptom characterized by flaking of the skin due to high levels of bilirubin in the blood, a condition that can also later cause cholangitis.
  • Dark stools and urine. Jaundice also causes stool and urine to turn too brown or black.

What treatment is there for cholangitis?

Once these first symptoms appear, it is very important to contact your GP. From there, he will be able to give us the following treatments so that cholangitis passes to a better life.

First, a thorough blood test will be carried out to check for any type of infection. Next, it is also advisable to do an abdominal ultrasound to check how advanced the cholangitis is or to see if it has affected other organs. Next, two types of operations can be carried out that are somewhat more complex:

  • Retrograde cholangiopancreatography. If for any reason the patients do not respond to the first treatments, then the next operation will have to be carried out, which consists of exploring the entire affected area to see if there are congenital malformations. Next, drainage of around 20ml will be produced using a cannula.
  • Percutaneous Tran’s hepatic cholangiography. This process must be carried out by a qualified radiologist. This will be in charge of doing an X-ray exam through all the bile ducts to see if they are working properly.
  • It is also advisable to check the levels of bilirubin, white blood cells and liver enzymes.  If for any reason the symptoms are getting worse and worse, then it may be necessary to carry out all kinds of operations such as those described above.
  • Once the entire process is finished, it is very important that the patient remains permanently hydrated so that this bile duct can function normally again without the appearance of stones that hinder the transfer of blood and bile.


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