Adenocarcinoma of Gall Bladder. Cholelithiasis

Clinical History

A man of 76 with progressive painless jaundice, dark urine and pale stools had a cholecystectomy. A catheter was sewn into the common bile duct so that it remained patent to the duodenum. Post-operatively the jaundice faded and the patient was discharged from hospital.


The specimen is a shrunken thick-walled gall bladder 5 x 4.5 cm in diameter, which has been opened to display several irregular faceted mixed calculi. In the neck of the gall bladder, there is an irregular pale brown tumour mass approximately 2 cm in diameter which projects into the lumen. This is an adenocarcinoma of the gall bladder associated with cholelithiasis.


Carcinoma of the gall bladder is uncommon. In approximately 80% of cases, it is associated with the presence of gallstones. However, less than 2% of patients with gallstones develop carcinoma of the gall bladder.