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What is Bile Duct Cancer?

Cholangiocarcinoma, or bile duct cancer, is a rare cancer involving the bile ducts. Bile ducts are the structures within the gastrointestinal tract that carry bile. Bile is the digestive fluid excreted by the liver, which flows via the bile ducts into the intestine. Bile duct cancer is rare, accounting for about 3 percent of all gastrointestinal cancers.

Bile Duct Cancer Symptoms

Most symptoms from cholangiocarcinoma arise from an obstruction within the bile ducts.

Symptoms of bile duct cancer include:

  • Abdominal pain, particularly in the right upper portion of the abdomen
  • Dark urine
  • Fever
  • Gray or clay colored stool
  • Itchy skin
  • Jaundice, or yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes
  • Weight loss without dieting