Encyclopedia Home / C / Choledocholithiasis


  • Alternative Names

    Gallstone in the bile duct; Bile duct stone


    Symptoms usually do not occur unless the stone blocks the common bile duct. Symptoms that may occur include:

    • Abdominal pain in the right upper or middle upper abdomen that may:
      • Come and go
      • Be sharp, cramping, or dull
      • Spread to the back or below the right shoulder blade
      • Get worse after eating fatty or greasy foods
      • Occurs within minutes of a meal
    • Fever
    • Loss of appetite
    • Jaundice (yellowing of skin and whites of eyes)
    • Nausea
    • Vomiting

    Signs and tests

    Tests that show the location of stones in the bile duct include the following:

    • Abdominal CT scan
    • Abdominal ultrasound
    • Endoscope retrograde cholangiography (ERCP)
    • Endoscopic ultrasound
    • Magnetic resonance cholangiopancreatography (MRCP)
    • Percutaneous transhepatic cholangiogram (PTCA)

    Your doctor may order the following blood tests:

    • Bilirubin
    • Liver function tests
    • Pancreatic enzymes