Bile is a substance produced by the liver. Its purpose it so assist in the process of digestion of lipids in the small intestine. The excess of bile is stored in the gallbladder and if it is necessary the bile from the gallbladder can be used at any time.
Vomiting bile is a sign of certain gastrointestinal illnesses. It is not normal that the content of the stomach contains bile. The presence of bile in the vomit can be easily recognized. Namely, this substance is yellow and can make the stomach content look yellowish or light brown to green. Apart from specific appearance of the vomiting a patient also complains about intensive stomach pain. This sign must be never neglected and if one notices specific color of the stomach content and suspects it comprises bile he/ she is due to report this to a doctor as soon as possible.
Causes of Vomiting Bile
The first cause of vomiting bile is intestinal blockage. In this case the passage of the intestine is not allowed and the content from the intestines is ejected from the body with vomiting. The obstruction can be caused by twisting of the intestines or the presence of colon cancer which has grown enough to block passage of the food. In case of intestinal blockage or obstruction the patients generally complain about intensive abdominal pain. The pain may subside a bit but it will eventually return. The person vomits frequently and the content of the stomach is of typical appearance - yellowish to green. One more characteristic symptom of intestinal obstruction is constipation and inability of a patient to pass gas.
People suffering from cholecystitis or gallbladder stone may occasionally suffer from bile vomiting especially if they consume specific foods or the stones start to move from the gallbladder (the attack of cholecystitis). Even patients who have recently been removed the gallbladder may vomit bile after the surgery. This side effect of the surgery generally withdraws 4-5 months after surgical removal of the gallbladder.
Vomiting bile may also occur after consumption of alcohol, particularly if one consumes large amounts of alcohol. The body is simply not able to process too much alcohol (this tolerance is different between men and women and it is generally individual) so it tries to eliminate alcohol via vomiting. Chronic alcoholics are prone to vomiting bile. If this is the case, people who consume alcohol should abstain from this harmful substance.
To sum up, if one notices traces of bile in the vomit or the vomit is entire yellow, light brown or even green, if vomiting is frequent and tends not to stop and if it is accompanied by intensive stomach pain one is supposed to consult a doctor promptly.