The purpose of this educational video is to introduce the patient to the various methods of dealing with gallstones. The tape commences with a brief description of the function of the gallbladder and the mechanism whereby gallstones cause pain. Subtle reference is given to the fact that "silent" gallstones may result in choledocholithiasis and serious consequences without advocating specific therapy for "silent" gallstones.
Four treatment options for symptomatic cholecystitis then receive overviews. Oral dissolution therapy with bile salts is generally discredited as an effective therapy and is also attributed potential complications, including "irreversible hepatitis." Moreover, the patient viewer is informed that medication of this nature will be necessary "for life" or stones will recur. The viewer is next led into the realm of gallstone lithotripsy. The appropriate indications are listed (noncalcified cholesterol stones and a small number of stones), with the further advice that not only will more than one