Background

Obesity is a well-established major risk factor for gallstone formation. Our case-control study aimed to characterize the relationship betweenoverweight/obesity and the risk of new-onset asymptomatic gallbladder stone disease.

Methods

We enrolled 336 Chinese patients with new-onset asymptomatic gallstone disease(GSD) , aged 30 to 82 years, who had undergone routine health check-ups annually in northwest China. A total of 610 healthy controls, who had undergone health check-ups annually in the same healthcare center since August 2012 were matched. GSD and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease(NAFLD) were diagnosed by ultrasound. In all participants, we measured height, weight, blood pressure, serum lipids indexes and fasting blood glucose. The data were analysed using logistic multivariate regression models.

Results

There was a significantly higher rate of overweight in the gallbladder stone group compare with the control group(X2 = 27.314, P <0.001, OR = 2.346, 95% CI: 1.706~5.389). In non-NAFLD, there was no significantly different morbidity with gallbladder stone in obesity subjects versus normal BMI subjects (X2 = 0.563, P =0.453, OR = 1.163, 95% CI: 0.784~1.725). Stratified by NAFLD, there was a positive association between BMI and hazard of GSD (OR = 2.793, P = 0.027, 95% CI: 1.122~6.95). Multivariate logistic regression showed that there were no significant correlations between GSD and other indexes, including gender, blood pressure, lipid and fasting blood glucose in overweight participants, while there were significantly positive correlations between GSD and total cholesterol, triglyceride and NAFLD in the obese.

Conclusions

We found that overweight is an independent risk factor for hazard of new-onset asymptomatic GSD, obesity is related to asymptomatic GSD formation with synergizing hyperlipidemia and NAFLD, and obesity does not increase the incidence of GSD in populations without NAFLD in northwest China.