Is It Bad Breath Or Gall Bladder Disease?

Could your bad breath be a sign of gall bladder disease?

Sometimes a particularly strong case of bad breath can really signal another ailment. While the average case of bad breath usually arises from conditions within the mouth, especially offensive or unusual-smelling bad breath may warrant further investigation.

How can your gall bladder relate to bad breath? Your gall bladder produces strong digestive juices, which empty into your stomach. When the gall bladder builds up mineral stones, the bile ducts can become blocked. Infection and great discomfort can result, causing a number of unpleasant symptoms, such as fleeting pain, nausea and even vomiting, especially after eating a fatty meal. Another possible telltale effect of gall bladder blockage is bad breath.

If you are experiencing abdominal trouble and you suspect your bad breath may be a sign of greater trouble ahead, compare your symptoms to these warning signs of gall bladder disease.

Internal symptoms of gall bladder disease:

  1. Agonizing pain in the upper right abdomen — especially after a heavy meal. The pain can last from minutes to hours.
  2. Sudden fever.
  3. Nausea and/or vomiting.
  4. Clay-colored stools. The lighter color results from insufficient bile (that is, blocked gall bladder ducts).

Outward signs of gall bladder disease:

  1. Excessively bad breath.
  2. Itchy skin rashes.
  3. A white-coated tongue.
  4. Offensive body odor and yellowish skin.
  5. Yellow, discolored eyes, and dark circles beneath the eyes.

If you are experiencing any combination of these symptoms, it’s time to consult with your physician.

Bad breath by itself does not mean you have gall bladder disease — it’s uncommon for bad breath to arise from anything other than poor oral hygiene. However, if your bad breath is particularly offensive, and coupled with some of the more noticeable signs of gall bladder disease, especially excruciating abdominal pain, further testing is called for. Ask your physician to diagnose whether it’s simply bad breath — or something more serious, like gall bladder disease.


  1. Vickie Reply
    March 23, 2006 at 8:38 am

    This article helped us convine the doctors to check our daughter's gall bladder – she did have a blocked duct and gall stones… and will have surgery.

  2. Hannah Breidinger Reply
    September 11, 2006 at 5:31 pm

    Great article!

  3. Sharon Reply
    May 14, 2008 at 5:19 pm

    I think that this article is awesome. I have gallstone and unfortunately I have all the symptoms that you mentioned, especially bad breath.

  4. DR.ABDUL Reply
    January 17, 2010 at 11:46 pm

    It is useful information for patients with gall bladder diseases.

  5. Christian Shane Garcia Reply
    August 21, 2015 at 8:10 pm

    How did the doctor diagnose this, I got an ultra sound and the doc said nothing was inflamed. I have all these signs; I recently even quit my social drinking because I think it made it worse.

  6. clifton taylor Reply
    August 2, 2015 at 9:20 am

    Excellent information about the gallbladder which many people don't pay much attention to.

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