The gallbladder is a tiny organ nestled in between the right and left quadrate lobes of the liver. Because it is located on the back side of the liver, only a small portion of it is visible from the front. The gallbladder looks a little like a deflated balloon. The gallbladder contracts in response to chyme in the duodenum. The bile then flows into the duodenum through the cystic duct, followed by the common bile duct.
Sometimes the liver makes more bile than is needed. When this happens, the bile first flows into the common bile duct. When the common bile duct is full, the excess flows into the gallbladder via the cystic duct. The bile is then stored in the gallbladder until it is needed.Last Updated: Saturday, July 16, 2011