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Old 11-05-2012, 07:30 PM   #31
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Re: Elevated liver enzymes, pain under right rib cage, coarse texture on ultrasound

My Ultrasound showed several small gallbladder Polyps. All previous Sonograms have showed no stones. The CT Scan I had in March showed my Gallbladder wall was thickened.

 
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Old 11-06-2012, 02:53 PM   #32
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CT results...confused!!

I went in to my doctor's office today to get my CT scan results. I went as a walk in because I was told he would be there and I would get to see him. It wasn't until right before I went to the room that they told me I would be seeing someone else.

He read my CT scan and it went a little like this...

Him: "liver mildly prominent in size. your liver is not enlarged, no?"
Me: "Is it enlarged?"
Him: "Is it?"
Me: "I'm confused."
Him: "Your liver is not enlarged. Is it a hairline enlarged? Maybe. I've never seen your liver...I don't know."

He proceeds to read to me that my gallbladder is clear, everything is clear until he gets to the spleen.

Him: "spleen prominent in size. So your spleen is fine."

Then he tells me there is stool in the bowels.

Him: "There is your problem. There is stool in the bowels."
Me: "Yeah I hadn't gone that morning before my test. Is that why my liver enzymes have been elevated for 5 years?"
Him: "no."

So confused. So I explain to him the pain I am getting.

Him: "You have gallstones."
Me: "But my ultrasound and CT scan shows I am clear of any gallstones."
Him: "Your pain indicates gallstones, I would know, I just had a kidney stone."
Me: "Does it say on the report that I have gallstones?"
Him: *reads report* "Your gallbladder is clear. You do not have gallstones."

Then he asks me where I have lived. I told him I grew up in California, lived in Colorado the past 6 years before moving here 3 months ago.

Him: "I'm going to test you for parasites for your abdominal pain."
Me: "Does this have anything to do with why my spleen and liver are mildly enlarged?"
Him: "Your spleen and liver are not enlarged. You probably just have a larger than normal spleen and liver. Your spleen and my spleen are not the same size. Your spleen and liver are fine."
Me: "So why are we testing for parasites? Do parasites elevate liver enzymes?"
Him: "I don't know."

Then he proceeds to tell me that since I'm from California and as he said, "California is close to Mexico" so I may have a parasite that is causing me abdominal pain.

I mentioned to him as one of you recommended that autoimmune diseases run in my family and if there was a way to test for that. He said we are only going to test for parasites right now because we need to rule that out.


I'm going back tomorrow morning to see my doctor.



Question though. Heart disease runs in my family and my mom was reading about how the spleen can be enlarged due to some heart issues and I've always read liver enzymes can be elevated because of heart issues...how would I bring that up to my doctor? I mean, heart disease runs in my family BIG TIME so my mom recommended I ask for an echocardiogram. Would that be really throwing things off? I would assume it's for preventative measures anyway as I am basically a clone of my mom and she has issues with her mitral valve (it's borderline needing to be replaced) as does my grandpa. Actually, my grandpa only has his mitral and aortic valves left after they removed part of his heart that had died off. His mitral valve is clipped off (an operation that he was the last person in the US to have before they recalled it) and his aorta was replaced with a steel valve in 1997. So he basically only has one functioning valve and it's artificial. Every one of his relatives has something wrong with their heart.



I'm just so frustrated. Glad to see the liver is clear and not fatty or rough or anything abnormal, but still have no answers and feel so confused.

 
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Old 11-06-2012, 05:36 PM   #33
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Re: CT results...confused!!

Well it sounds as though you got no where today either and for that I am truly sorry. I know how frustrating this is! Funny you mentioned heart problems, as they run in my mothers side of the family as well. She and I both have valves that regurgitate (I am unsure which one) she has an enlarged heart and CHF. Her father and one sister passed from the heart valve disease and CHF as well. I do not know if there is a link between the elevated LFT`s and Heart Disease.

I had a HIDA scan ran this morning and the my surgeon called with the results this afternoon and basically my Ejection Fraction is 89% which he termed normal. From what I have read that is a High Ejection Fraction. So he told me to keep my appointment with the Gastro doc and to come see him Friday and we would sit down and go over the results together face to face. So, it basically left me with no idea as to WHERE my pain is coming from at this point. It is equally frustrating. I do know when they injected the Hormone that makes your GB contract mine went crazy I was in some terrible pain for about 5 minutes there!

It sounds to me as tho the doc that you saw today is what I would term a bit of a quack. I believe I would go and get a second opinion. Hope you get some answers soon!

 
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Old 11-06-2012, 05:54 PM   #34
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Re: CT results...confused!!

Haha a bit of a quack indeed! I am going to go see my regular doctor tomorrow and let him know how absolutely confused I am. Dude I saw today just made me wanna throw my hands in the air and give up. I hate taking care of myself I guess you could say, I'm already fed up lol.

My mom's mitral valve regurgitates as well and her heart is enlarged. It was nothing that doctors ever caught until she was pregnant with me and for some reason they did an echo and found that. I know my grandpa's sister just passed away due to heart related issues. His brother just had another surgery I think for a hole in his heart. Also, I think his parents both passed away from heart disease.

From what I've read, when your heart isn't functioning properly, it can have an effect on your other organs including your liver. So if your liver is not functioning properly, it may cause your enzymes to be elevated. Something to be interested in I suppose, I just feel so uncomfortable telling my doctor what to do.

Good luck to both of us in one day getting some sort of answers.

 
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Old 11-06-2012, 06:25 PM   #35
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Re: CT results...confused!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by abouttwodays View Post
Haha a bit of a quack indeed! I am going to go see my regular doctor tomorrow and let him know how absolutely confused I am. Dude I saw today just made me wanna throw my hands in the air and give up. I hate taking care of myself I guess you could say, I'm already fed up lol.

My mom's mitral valve regurgitates as well and her heart is enlarged. It was nothing that doctors ever caught until she was pregnant with me and for some reason they did an echo and found that. I know my grandpa's sister just passed away due to heart related issues. His brother just had another surgery I think for a hole in his heart. Also, I think his parents both passed away from heart disease.

From what I've read, when your heart isn't functioning properly, it can have an effect on your other organs including your liver. So if your liver is not functioning properly, it may cause your enzymes to be elevated. Something to be interested in I suppose, I just feel so uncomfortable telling my doctor what to do.

Good luck to both of us in one day getting some sort of answers.
I have valvular heart disease but my symptom is mainly shortness of breath from not having enough oxygen circulating to the heart but it is not severe and I do not have any concern about at this point.

I have been looking for an underlying cause for my weird chest pain.
My elevated liver enzymes were from Hepatitis.
I also had gallstone ultrasound, negative. Gallbladder was the first thing my ER doctor looked for when she saw my abnormal liver enzymes.
After that, I saw a primary doctor who ordered a Hepatitis panel which came back positive so I found my answer.

Back to chest pain, I had chest CT, Abdomen MRI done, found liver tumor but my GI doctor said it might not be the cause of chest pain.
So I had an Echo done which showed valvular heart disease but all 3 cardiologists said the same thing that it was not related to chest pain or liver enzymes.
Further more, to be sure, I had EKG, cardiac stress test as well as wearing a Holter heart monitor for 24 hours, showed arrhythmia but still not the cause of chest pain.

Later, I saw a rheumatologist because I started having other symptoms on and off but took months. One of them was joint pain. I had a rheumatic panel done showed positive for auto immune disease, possibly Lupus.
But as of now, still not having the definite diagnosis on Lupus. The doctor used the term "mixed connective tissue disease or collagen disease". But one day all symptoms just disappeared. Sometime on sometime off. I then stop finding an answer.

I think you should have your chest pain evaluated as well, especially if it comes with other symptoms such as abdominal pain, gas, bloating, shortness of breath and so on.
Be safe is better, right.
And I also think that you definitely should not give up on your abnormal liver enzymes since it could be caused by something serious.
Have you had your Hepatitis panel checked yet?

The liver does not have to be enlarged to raise the enzymes up, only virus itself is enough. Since your CT is negative, at least you know you do not have any tumor or enlargement.

 
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Old 11-06-2012, 06:43 PM   #36
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Re: CT results...confused!!

See I'm confused because I always thought that "prominent in size" would mean enlarged. The doctor agreed that meant enlarged but he then went on to say that just because my liver and spleen are "enlarged" on a CT scan, that doesn't actually mean they're enlarged as he doesn't know what size my liver or spleen should be. So he basically said that means nothing. However, there were no lesions, tumors, odd textures or anything of the sort so that is good.

The only pain I have is throughout my right rib cage. So I'm not getting specific chest pain as it's more towards the lower ribcage area. The heart issue came up from something my mom read online and being that it runs in the family and her problem was sort of stumbled upon (she had no symptoms) she asked me if I would bring that up to my doctor.

I have had hepatitis panels run many times in the past 4 years, the last one being done a few weeks ago for hep A, B, C, D, and E. All have come back negative every time.

Initially upon seeing this doctor he said my symptoms sounded like a gluten issue. Since he didn't have my records at the time, he tested my LFT's first and when he saw they were elevated he wanted to look more into the liver itself so he ordered the hepatitis panel and ultrasound. Then when the ultrasound came back "abnormal" he ordered a CT scan to look further into what was described as the "coarse" texture of my liver. He hasn't seen my CT results yet, I will see him tomorrow. Interesting though because if you read up on gluten sensitivities or Celiac disease your enzymes can be elevated, you can be fatigued, itchy, etc. So I'm wondering if he is ever going to go back to that and test anything there. He strayed from it after the abnormal ultrasound results.

 
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Old 11-06-2012, 06:49 PM   #37
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Re: CT results...confused!!

Yep i had Celiac disease tested, ordered by my primary doctor. It came back negative.
I think you should ask for a copy of your test results. I always do that because sometime there are incidental findings that are not told by our doctors because it is not related to current symptoms.
I found my liver tumor from reading my CT result. The doctor just told me that i had no serious heart issue (but i went to a medical record dep to get a copy).
It s good to have for your record anyway. Just a thought!

Cheers!

 
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Old 11-06-2012, 06:51 PM   #38
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Re: CT results...confused!!

Yep i had Celiac disease tested, ordered by my primary doctor. It came back negative.
I think you should ask for a copy of your test results. I always do that because sometime there are incidental findings that are not told by our doctors because it is not related to current symptoms.
I found my liver tumor from reading my CT result. The doctor just told me that i had no serious heart issue (but i went to a medical record dep to get a copy).
It s good to have for your record anyway. Just a thought!

Cheers!

 
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Old 11-06-2012, 06:56 PM   #39
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Re: CT results...confused!!

Wow, I didn't know they let you get copies of your results! Have you ever had anyone give you any problems for asking? I'm such a wimp and I hate troubling people or asking questions which winds up preventing me from ever getting answers. I'm trying so hard to be vocal and keep trying. Just hoping the doctor doesn't give up on me before I give up on myself!

 
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Old 11-06-2012, 07:13 PM   #40
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Re: CT results...confused!!

No. Sometime i asked them "what about this ("disease name"), do you think it s possible?" But i never told them what to do, what the next step should be.
Doctors surely know their stuff but you can always get second opinion if you want to.

Absolutely, you can always ask for your copies at the receptionist (dr office) or medical record department (hospital). If it s a lot, they may charge you a fee though but some time it s free.

 
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Old 11-06-2012, 07:20 PM   #41
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Re: CT results...confused!!

Awesome, thanks for the info!

I am just always hesitant to even bring anything up as I know sometimes doctors are open to ideas and some are the very anti-***** type. I never try to self diagnose but I also tend to assume none of my symptoms are related to any one thing. It's helpful for me to read up on stuff just in case I should be mentioning something to my doctor that I may have otherwise felt was useless, but I still fear they're going to get angry at me for making use of this whole Internet thing.

 
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Old 11-06-2012, 07:59 PM   #42
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Re: CT results...confused!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by abouttwodays View Post
Haha a bit of a quack indeed! I am going to go see my regular doctor tomorrow and let him know how absolutely confused I am. Dude I saw today just made me wanna throw my hands in the air and give up. I hate taking care of myself I guess you could say, I'm already fed up lol.
Good luck to both of us in one day getting some sort of answers.
I completely understand I have been to so many doctors with this same problem over the years and it has steadily gone worse, I have seen Family Doctors, Internists, A Hepatologist, Two Gastroenterologist and a Surgeon and still no answers!

I have even questioned myself sometimes to wonder if it was all in my head. I even took all my symptoms to one doc because I wanted a second opinion and he basically told me that my list of symptoms was astronomical and refused to believe their credibility, needless to say I left his office in tears. Its just one of those things or times I should say, when you KNOW there is something wrong because you just do not feel right but can never get any answers. And so I keep plugging on! :-)

 
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Old 11-07-2012, 08:02 AM   #43
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Going to see a GI specialist.

So I went in and saw my actual doctor this morning. He said yes my liver is enlarged and according to the CT scan my spleen is quite big which concerns him. He told me testing for parasites is not going to give me any answers and do not even bother.

He said he is concerned about the pain, the enzymes, and the size of my spleen. However, he is at a complete loss. He referred me to a GI specialist and I will be seeing him on Friday.

He called me back and told me to completely stop taking birth control. He said that clearly the birth control is not the cause of everything as I had not been taking birth control before all of this started (I wasn't on birth control ever in my life until 2009.) He did say though that the birth control may be aggravating whatever is going on or preventing something from getting better and he doesn't want anything getting in the way of finding out what is wrong.

I feel way better after seeing him. After I told him what the other doctor said about the liver/spleen enlargement meaning nothing and that it is maybe just a parasite, he looked at me like, "dude is crazy" and literally told me to forget everything that came out of the other guy's mouth.

So we will see what route the GI specialist takes. It's difficult because I have no insurance at the moment but I need to see what is wrong.

 
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Old 11-07-2012, 08:15 AM   #44
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Re: Going to see a GI specialist.

Wow even your doctor said that the other doctor's opinion was worthless.
Good that you found out what it is.
Did he mention any tumor in your liver?
My GI doctor also told me to stop birth control pill. It makes certain tumor grow more.
Can t you add insurance now tho?
Seems like you may need further tests, prob MRI. I got the bill for $2,000 for MRI but my insurance paid. Otherwise, I could not afford it.

 
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Old 11-07-2012, 08:42 AM   #45
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Re: Going to see a GI specialist.

I know! He just sat there shaking his head like, "wow."

The CT scan confirmed that there were no tumors, cysts, fat, lesions, any of those sorts of things on my liver.

My husband had lost his job a few months back so we were initially put on Medicaid. He just started a new job that doesn't offer insurance so they put us on the "medically needy" program with Medicaid. This means if I rack up a bill of $850 in a month, Medicaid will kick in and start paying. However, my doctor and my GI specialist do not accept the Medically Needy program so everything I have to pay is out of pocket until I get insurance. We were not initially aware of it not being accepted even though my doctor accepted Medicaid in general.

I'm looking into insurance options that we can afford. I have no idea how to shop for insurance, I've always been covered either under my parents or under my husband's work. My mom works for an insurance company though and she is going to help me figure out what type of plan would be best for me, even if I don't go with the company she has (Anthem BCBS.)

My understanding though is that with Medically Needy, if I did need an MRI and the one bill alone was over $850, Medicaid would cover it.

 
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