Ultrasound was normal but Dr still wants me to see a surgeon??

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So, my doctor's office calls today (primary care Dr) to say my ultrasound was normal.  Then she says that my doctor still wants me to meet with the surgeons.  I asked her why, if my scan was normal.  She said she would ask the Dr and call me back.

She just called and said that there is another test (I'm assuming the HIDA), but he wants me to meet with the surgeons and let them decide.  Now that makes NO sense to me. Of course the surgeons are going to want to take out my gallbladder.  Shouldn't the HIDA be ordered by my primary care?  Should I go see another doctor?  Is this considered gastroenterology?  

There is no way I'm having surgery without KNOWING FOR SURE something is wrong with it.  Now I have an consult with the surgeons on Sept. 16th. It seems to me that the next test, blood work etc. could be ordered now, rather than waiting two weeks just to talk to them.

I am confused.

As far as my symptoms go, they haven't been bad lately. I've been eating really low fat.  I still have some aching around the right side of my neck, right shoulder blade and back side of my gallbladder, but not all the time.

Any thoughts?

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13 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi, Jane,

    Well, sometimes an ultrasound won't show gallstones.  It all depends on how big they are.  If there is sludge (this is like mud with smal bits of gravel in it) or small stones they don't always show up.  Some of it has to do with the expertise of the tech performing the ultrasound.  A CT scan is much more definitive.

    I agree with you that the next step would be to see a gastroenterologist--not a surgeon.  You need blood work to determine how well your liver is functioning, and perhaps other tests, such as the HIDA scan.  

    The gastroenteroligist has the expertise to review  the test results, consult with the radiologist, assess what's going on and refer you to a surgeon, perhaps not the same surgeon preferred by your pcp.   

    Seems to me your pcp is putting the cart before the horse...

    Good luck and let us know how you do.  

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    • Posted

      Lynda, I agree. I was wondering what you thought of me calling the surgeons tomorrow to ask them about ordering the HIDA and blood work (before my consult on 9/16)? If I try to get an appt with a gastroenterologist, it roll probably be 6 weeks or more before I get in.
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    • Posted

      Hi, Jane!  

      Perhaps that might be why your pcp wants to send you to a surgeon first.  If there is a 6 week delay to see a gastroenterologist, I am concerned about how long it might take to get your surgery scheduled.  Are you in the US?  If you're in the UK, I've heard of it taking months for surgery to be scheduled.  I'm thinking that your doc might want to get surgery lined up.  One can always cancel a surgical procedure, if the gastroenterologist thinks it's not warranted.  But I'd hate to see you needing surgery and having to wait for months!

      I don't know of any doctor who would order tests without first seeing a patient. If a doctor sees you then they're responsible for your care.  

      I'd go along to see the surgeon just to see what happens, and press your pcp to see a gastsroentrologist in the meantime.  Just a thought.   

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    • Posted

      I live in the US and I can usually get things scheduled rather quickly.  

      I emailed my primary doctor this morning asking for bloodwork and possibly the HIDA scan BEFORE meeting with the surgeon in two weeks.  We'll see what he says.  It just makes sense to me that I have more information for him/her when I meet with them.  It doesn't make sense to me that I would meet with a surgeon to possibly remove my gallbladder when all I have for them is a normal ultrasound.

      Thanks for your help.

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    • Posted

      I'm glad to hear it.  Should make scheduling and communication much easier.  

      Please let me know how things go!  Best of luck!

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  • Posted

    The hida. scan is nuclear medicine at my local hospital. My catscan showed my gallbladder was bad..and bloodwork. .I'm not sure what to say. My pain was like a severe menstrual cramp..but up in my right ribcage..I had a fever. .was jaundice. .but my gallbladder exploded. .so..I would talk to the surgeon. ...

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    • Posted

      My pain has been very minimal the last 4 days.  I have been eating low fat, though.  I just asked my primary care doctor for blood tests and the HIDA before meeting with surgery (via email).  
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  • Posted

    My primary Dr office just called and he ordered ne to gave the HIDA scan, so I am waiting to hear from them. I asked about blood work and she said he didn't order that, but she would check with him. Wouldn't blood work be the first thing most drs would order?

    I explained to her that I didn't feel comfortable sering a surgeon with nothing but a normal ultrasound.

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    • Posted

      Gosh, how long have you had this pcp?  Is he usually all over the place?  If he orders a CBC (complete blood count) without ordering a liver function test that would make no sense at all.  
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    • Posted

      I have had him for years. He ordered the HIDA scan but not the blood work. I don't understand why. I asked the woman who called from his office about blood work and she said it wasn't ordered but she would ask him about it. She said that the surgeons may want to do the or own testing. I told her it would make the most sense to have the blood work done BEFORE the surgery consult. I feel like he wants to hand me over to surgery and let them handle it.

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    • Posted

      Sounds like he does want to hand you over, as if he's taking no responsibility for diagnosis or treatment--he doesn't want to "go there" if it's something he doesn't feel comfortable with.

      Well, please let me know what happens!  Best of luck!

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    • Posted

      Just received an email from my Drs office saying that my Dr says no blood work is necessary before seeing the surgeon. So I guess I'm getting the HIDA before mtg the surgeon, but not blood work. Still don't understand. Oh well.. At least I'm getting the HIDA.

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    • Posted

      Whew!  I'm in the US, too, and I've never heard of surgery being contemplated with so little back up.  Are you on medicare, by any chance? I might be suspicious by nature, but before I've been referred to surgeons for surgery, I had all the tests before hand....I'm glad you're getting the HIDA, too.

      Let me know what happens!  

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