Hemobilia is a rare but potentially lethal condition. The commonest cause of hemobilia is trauma, accounting up to 85% of all cases. Hemobilia caused by gallstones is very rare. Most of the cases of hemobilia are either managed conservatively or treated by embolization. Surgery is indicated only when there is an associated surgical condition or when embolization fails. We report a case of a 72-year-old patient with massive hemobilia caused by gallstone erosion to the adjacent artery, diagnosed intraoperatively. The complication was successfully managed by cholecystectomy and repair of the bleeding vessel. This case highlights the importance that hemobilia should be suspected in patients presenting with upper gastrointestinal bleeding. Although rare, massive hemobilia can be life threatening, leading to significant morbidity and mortality. Therefore, a high index of suspicion and timely intervention are important.
* Title and MeSH Headings from MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.