Gallbladder cancer develops when the gallbladder’s normal cells shift and expand uncontrollably, forming a tumour. A benign (non-cancerous) tumour, such as a polyp, may develop into a malignant (cancerous) tumour over time. When gallbladder cancer is detected in its early stages, there is a strong possibility of a cure. However, it is usually detected at a late stage, when the prognosis is always low. According to Dr. Sanjoy Mandal, who is a renowned oncologist in Kolkata, gallbladder cancer can also develop without being detected due to its comparatively hidden nature.
What Causes Gallbladder Cancer
Since gallbladder cancer is such a rare disease, the exact cause is unknown. It develops when healthy gallbladder cells develop mutations in their Deoxyribonucleic Acid (DNA), causing the cells to grow out of control and live even when other cells will usually die, says the cancer doctor in Kolkata.
Gallbladder Cancer Types
Since the gallbladder contains a variety of cell types, any of these cell types may grow into cancer.
- Adenocarcinoma: Adenocarcinoma begins in glandular cells that line the organs of the digestive tract and is one of the most common forms of gallbladder cancer. The glandular cells secrete a thick mucus-like substance.
- Papillary Adenocarcinoma: Within the gallbladder, cancer cells are organised in finger-like projections. This form of gallbladder cancer is less likely to spread to lymph nodes and distant organs than other forms of gallbladder cancers.
- Less common gallbladder cancers: Adenosquamous carcinomas, squamous cell cancer, sarcomas, and small cell carcinomas.
Signs & Symptoms of Gallbladder Cancer
The commonly experienced symptoms of gallbladder cancer, as listed by the oncology specialist in Kolkata, are given below:.
- Abdominal bloating and pain
- Unexplained weight loss
- Dark urine
- Lump in the abdomen
Surgical Treatment of Gallbladder Cancer in Kolkata
During the procedure, the cancer is removed. Gallbladder surgery is further classified into the following categories:
- Cholecystectomy: The gallbladder and some of the surrounding tissues are removed during this operation. It’s possible that nearby lymph nodes will be removed as well.
- Radical gallbladder resection: In most cases of gallbladder cancer, an extended (also called radical) cholecystectomy is performed because there is a chance that the cancer will return if only the gallbladder is removed.
The following types of palliative surgery can help alleviate symptoms if the gallbladder cancer has spread and cannot be removed:
- Biliary bypass surgery: A biliary bypass may be necessary if the tumour is blocking the small intestine and bile is accumulating in the gallbladder. The gallbladder or bile duct will be cut and sewn to the small intestine to create a new route through the blocked region during this procedure.
- Endoscopic stent placement: The best cancer surgeon in Kolkata says that If the tumour is obstructing the bile duct, surgery to place a stent (a small, flexible tube) to remove bile that has accumulated in the region may be required. The stent can be inserted either through a catheter (that drains to the outside of the body) or across the blocked area to help remove the bile into the small intestine.