surgery (taking out the cancer or taking steps to relieve symptoms caused by the cancer), radiation therapy (using high-dose x-rays to kill the cancer cells); and chemotherapy (using drugs to kill cancer cells).
The chances of recovery and the choice of treatment depend on the location of the cancer in the bile duct, the stage of the cancer and the patient’s general health. Cancer arising in the extrahepatic bile duct is an uncommon disease. It is curable by surgery in fewer than 10% of all cases. The prognosis depends in part on the exact anatomic location of the tumor, which affects its resectability. Total resection is possible in 25% to 30% of cases in which the tumor arises in the distal bile duct, a resectability rate that is clearly better than for tumors that occur in more proximal sites. Bile duct cancer may occur more frequently in patients with a history of primary sclerosing cholangitis, chronic ulcerative colitis, choledochal cysts, or infections with the fluke Clonorchis sinensis. The most common symptoms of bile duct cancer are jaundice, pain, fever, and pruritus. In most patients, the tumor cannot be completely removed by surgery and is incurable. Palliative resections or other palliative measures such as irradiation (e.g., brachytherapy or external-beam radiation therapy) or stenting procedures may maintain adequate biliary drainage and allow for improved survival. Many bile duct cancers are multifocal. Perineural invasion has a negative impact on survival.
- Bile sludge
Bile sludge: A mixture of microscopic particulate matter in bile that occurs when particles of material precipitate from bile. Bile is the fluid that is made by the liver. It is stored in the gallbladder until after a meal, when it passes out of the gallbladder and through the common bile duct into the intestine […]
Bilharzia: A schistosome, a trematode worm parasite. Three main species of these worms’Schistosoma haematobium, S. japonicum, and S. mansoni’cause disease in humans. Larval forms of the parasite live in freshwater snails. When the parasite is liberated from the snail, it burrows into the skin, transforms to the schistosomulum stage, and migrates to the urinary tract […]
Bilharziasis: a parasite infection by a trematode worm acquired from infested water. Also known as schistosomiasis. Species which live in man can produce liver, bladder, and gastrointestinal problems. Species of the schistosomiasis parasite which cannot live in man cause swimmer’s itch.
Biliary: Having to do with the gallbladder, bile ducts, or bile. The biliary system itself consists of the gallbladder and bile ducts and, of course, the bile. For example, biliary atresia is the absence or closure of the major bile ducts, the ducts that drain bile from the liver.
- Biliary atresia
Biliary atresia: Congenital absence or closure of the major bile ducts, the ducts that drain bile from the liver. Biliary atresia results in a progressive inflammatory process which may lead to cirrhosis of the liver. The infant looks normal at birth but develops jaundice after the age of 2 to 3 weeks with yellowing of […]