Complications of Acute Cholecystitis (gallbladder)
The most serious complication of acute cholecystitis is infection, which develops in about 20% of cases. It is extremely dangerous and life threatening if it spreads to other parts of the body ( septicemia ). Symptoms include fever, rapid heartbeat, fast breathing, and mental confusion. Among the conditions that can lead to septicemia are the following:
* Gangrene or Abscesses. If acute cholecystitis is untreated and becomes very severe, inflammation can cause abscesses or destroy enough tissue in the gallbladder (called necrosis ) to lead to gangrene. Studies have reported this complication in between 2 - 30% of cases. The highest risk is in men over 50 with a history of heart disease who have high levels of infection.