Bile (or bile) is a liquid produced by the liver cells that is important for the digestion and elimination of breakdown products.

Contrary to popular belief that bile is made in the gallbladder, this fluid is created in the liver. There are special cells here, the so-called hepatocytes, which are responsible for producing bile. Between every two liver cells there are small tubules into which the fluid is released. In addition, other substances, among others

  • Bile salts
  • cholesterol
  • Bilirubin and
  • Hormones are secreted into there.

These canals always close larger canals (= Bile ducts) together and ultimately only one duct, namely the Common hepatic duct the bile out of the liver. At this point, the bile is usually sooner thin and yellowish, they are referred to as "Liver bile". From this common liver duct branches off Gallbladder duct (Cystic duct) to the gallbladder, via which the bile flows into the gallbladder when it is backlogged. If there is no back pressure, the liquid passes through the following section, the Common bile duct, to the Duodenum, where the bile duct ultimately joins the excretory duct of the pancreas in the large papilla (Major duodenal papilla) opens. The Gallbladder so practically serves as reservoir for the bile. There, water is withdrawn from the liquid, making it almost a tenth of its original volume thickened and thereby more viscous and their coloring is now more greenish ("Bladder bile“).


Per day man produces for example 700ml bilewhich is initially stored in the gallbladder, except for a small percentage that is directed directly into the interior of the intestine. If now one Ingestion takes place and Fat the small intestine reach, thereby the release of various hormones, including the hormone Cholecystokinin CCK, suggested. This hormone stimulates the smooth muscles found in the Wall of the gallbladder is embedded, and so leads to one Contract (Contracting) the gallbladder. As a result, the contents of the gallbladder (i.e. the bile) are transported to the outside and reach the duodenum. An activity of the parasympathetic part of the autonomic nervous systemwhich is here about the Vagus nerve has the same effect on the gallbladder.

The bile is mainly composed of water (about 85%). Other components of the bile are in certain proportions

  • Bile acids
  • Electrolytes
  • Glycoproteins (mucins)
  • Lipids
  • cholesterol and
  • Waste products of the body, such as drugs or hormones

Also the dye Bilirubin is eliminated via the bile, which is responsible for their greenish to brown coloring responsible for. The bile fulfills two important functions in the body. On the one hand, it serves the Digestion of fats. In the duodenum, the bile acids form so-called micelles with the water-insoluble components of food (i.e. fats, some vitamins and cholesterol). This creates a Absorption this allows substances from the intestine into the blood. The bile acids are removed from the lumen of the small intestine in the rear section and return to the liver via the blood, where they are again available for fat digestion. This saves the body the time-consuming re-synthesis of bile acids. This process is called enterohepatic circulation. The second task of the bile is to Metabolic end products or breakdown products of the body that have previously been made water-soluble in the liver.

If the composition of the bile is incorrect, it can become too Problems come. For example, there is either too much in relation to the water content cholesterol or too much Bilirubin in the bile so it can be used to train Gallstones (corresponding to either cholesterol stones, the more common form, or bilirubin stones). Symptomatic gallstones make their way through Pressure pain in the (right) Upper abdomen, cramping pain (Colic) and possibly one Jaundice (Jaundice) noticeable. The jaundice comes from that Degradation product of the red Blood pigment hemoglobin, bilirubin, can no longer be excreted and therefore accumulates in the blood. Hence the loses chair its color and will grayish-white.

Aside from gallstones, the Blockage of biliary tract (also known as cholestasis) have many other causes. This includes, for example Tumors from Bile duct or bladder, pancreas and Duodenum. Besides the one already mentioned above Jaundice These diseases also lead to disturbed fat digestion, which means that high-fat food is no longer well tolerated and fats can occasionally be found in stoolSteatorrhea).