Certain factors have been seen to increase the chances of gallstones in a person. These include:
- Gender and Age- Gallstones occur more commonly in women and older people. They tend to occur more after 60 years of age.
- Ethnic background- Certain ethnic groups like Americans and Mexican-Americans are more susceptible to develop gallstones.
- Overweight or Obesity- Obesity causes high level of cholesterol in body that can precipitate to form stones.
- Genetics - Those individuals with family history of gallstones are more likely to develop this disease.
- Diabetes- People suffering from diabetes are at a higher risk of developing gallstones as their blood registers higher levels of triglycerides.
- Taking Medications that contain Estrogen, such as Hormone Therapy Drugs- Estrogen increases cholesterol levels and decreases motility of gallbladder. Those who are pregnant or women taking contraceptive pills or hormone replacement therapy have higher levels of Estrogen and may be more likely to develop gallstones.
- Dietary habits- Having a diet rich in fat and less in fibre acts as a milestone to develop gallstones.
- Cholesterol-lowering medicines- Very important point to be noted. It is said that some conventional medicines that decrease blood cholesterol levels actually increase the amount of cholesterol in bile, and precipitate gallstones.