Ogeng’o JA. "GALLSTONE DISEASE: A CALL TO AWARENESS IN SUBSAHARAN AFRICA." Anatomy Journal of Africa. 2017;6(2): 914-915.


Gallstone disease (GSD) is a major global health problem that causes high morbidity and mortality constituting a significant
economic burden in developed countries (Shaffer, 2006; Stinton and Shaffer, 2012; Njeze, 2013). It was previously
considered rare in sub-Saharan Africa (Stinton and Shaffer, 2012; Njeze, 2013). Its prevalence, however, is steadily rising
and has already attained considerable proportions in a number of countries perhaps consequent to epidemiological and
demographic transitions (Eze et al., 2016). This condition is important for several reasons – First, it is one of the most
common causes of upper gastrointestinal morbidity and may mimic / be associated with gastritis, peptic ulcer disease, hiatal
hernia, esophagitis, gastroesophageal reflux disease, duodenitis; acute and chronic pancreatitis, hepatitis and portal vein
thrombosis among others (Sabitha et al., 2016). Secondly, it is a predisposing / risk factor for overall mortality and other
diseases including various gastrointestinal cancers, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease; cardiovascular diseases (CVD)
especially coronary heart, cerebrovascular, peripheral vascular diseases, arterial stiffness and heart failure (Yu et al., 2017).
The risk for CVD is independent of age, gender and other comorbidities (Olaiya et al., 2013). Thirdly, patients with GSD
appear to have a higher prevalence of cardiovascular risk factors such as obesity, type 2 diabetes mellitus; dyslipidemia,
hyperinsulinemia, sedentary life style and gut microbiota dysbiosis (Lv et al., 2015).

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