This paper attempts to deduce the prevalence of gallstones by the use of previously published necropsy data. These data are interpreted as suggesting that the incidence of gallstone development is similar in North America, Australia, Great Britain, and Norway and is largely independent of age between the third and eighth decades.
Data are also presented which may imply that the total mortality for gallstones or non-malignant gallbladder disease is not greatly influenced by increasing the treatment rate from the present level in the United Kingdom.
It is believed that this evidence does not support the view that widely differing treatment rates for gallstones reflect differences in the prevalence of the disease.
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