I had a CT scan and X-Ray done this past weekend to check for kidney stones. They didn't find any kidney stones, but they did find what the urologist calld "malrotation of the gut", where my organs (he wasn't clear about if it was just my digestive organs, or ALL organs) are mirror-imaged to the opposite side of my body than they should be. for example, my appendix is on my left side.
When I tried to look up more info on this, all I could find was something when the intestines get wrapped around themselves. That's not what this is, because he said there's no health risk associated with it. It's just something I should know in case I ever get appendicitis and it hurts on my left side instead of my right, for example.
So then I tried to look up "internal organs on opposite side", but I mostly got info about a condition where people are born with ALL organs (including the heart) on the opposite side of where they should be. I'm not sure if this is the case with me.
I was wondering if anyone else has any more information on this. I'm just curious how common it is (I think the doctor actually said it's rare), and just any general information about it.
what you're talking about is situs inversus .. it's broken down into different nomenclatures, like situs inversus totalis or situs inversus with dextrocardia(the two former terms mean your organs above and below the diaphragm are on the "wrong" side ... it sounds like you have situs inversus with levocardia(basically below the diaphragm your organs are flipped but your heart is in the "right" place ... there are also other forms where the "flip" has occurred not so definitively, and it's been so aptly named situs ambiguous
anyways its rare ... like less than 1 in 10000 rare
and the intesting thing -- that's a volvulus ... not a good thing, and you'd be sick ...
I'm sure if you checked on emedicine, you could find info on it
Thanks for the info, hermes!
It was strange how I couldn't really find much about this on the internet that made sense. I do remember reading, though, that having your heart and lungs not-flipped but having your lower organs flipped opposite was even more rare, so I think I just figured it was too rare, so that couldn't be me.
But I think it must be, because I did have an EKG a number of years ago, and they would have said something if my heart had been on the wrong side!
I was informed by a friend that there was an episode of "ER" where a kid came in with an injury and during surgery it was discovered that he had this condition, and that the episode was titled "Freak Show".
I got a copy of my CT Scan results from my Urologist, and this is what it says under "STOMACH/BOWEL"- The stomach is decompressed. The duodenum does not cross midline. Small bowel is located entirely within the right side of the abdomen including loops located between the liver and the anterior abdominal wall. Findings consistent with developmental malrotation. No small bowel dilation. The colon is located entirely along the left side of the abdomen with the cecum at the midline of the pelvis. The appendix is not identified with certainty, however there are no secondary signs for acute appendicitis. No wall thickening or pericolonic fat stranding is seen. No bowel obstruction or evidence of volvulus.
Soo.... that sounds like the only organs that are actually in the wrong place is my intestinal system... my liver seems to be on the right side, which is the correct side, right? I'm pretty confused. Was I born with this, or did my stomach organs sort of twist? Where should these things be located? I thought they were usually in the middle, and sort of situated a little more towards one side or the other, not completely on one side or the other...
Oh, and they say my stomach is decompressed... that just means there's no food left in it, right? And why couldn't they find my appendix?
Last edited by SentenceDoing; 05-10-2008 at 12:44 PM.
small bowel between the liver and anterior abdominal is heading towards a Chilaiditi syndrome(but as long as you are asymptomatic -- it don't matter)
just so you know the stomach usually sits in the upper middle part of the abdomen(epigastrium) with part sitting in the left upper abdominal quadrant,
the small bowel(duodenum/jejunum/ileum) travels throughout your abdomen and the colon usually starts on the right side, goes up along the right side then across your abdomen then down along the left sides, starts to loop in the left lower abdominal quadrant and then heads down to your rectal vault/anus
stomach decompressed = not gas/liquid/food in stomach
not finding the appendix = not necessarily uncommon, depends on it's size and how the contrast was administered(ideally rectal contrast is better for visualization/but the stuff they make you drink from above also works) .. if the appendix doesn't fill well with contrast(can happen for many reasons) then it may be tough to see
Thanks again, hermes.
That's pretty much what I thought- that the large intestine usually started in the right, went up above the small intestine across the abdomen, and down along the left. But mine is totally located in the left side. How weird!
And I guess my small intestines loop behind my liver, which I didn't catch before you explained that. I know that's totally strange from the experience of having to dissect a pig fetus in my biology class in college- the pig intestines were kind of centered in the abdomen, and connected to itself with some sort of connective tissue. They definitely didn;t have loops that went behind the liver. The funny thing is that I'm actually trying to picture the organs in the pig I dissected and comparing that to what they're describing of the situation of mine in the report. lol.
So, how rare is this sort of thing?
Last edited by SentenceDoing; 05-12-2008 at 06:35 AM.