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Monday, January 14, 2013

First Visit at the Mayo Clinic at Jacksonville

I have to say that the Mayo Clinic is very efficient. I went and registered at the registration desk and then was called back by a nurse. She input my information into the computer and put in all of my medical history. Then, she sent me upstairs to the floor where the doctor was and they asked me more questions and gave me more forms. I was able to get back to the doctor's room quite quickly.

As a side note, I need to make sure to get my other records sent there. I've had problems with nausea and vomiting since I was a teenager.

The doctor wasn't happy about my GI doctor's medications that he put me on but did commend my doctor for sending me to the Mayo Clinic. He told me that Bentyl and Levsin are basically the same things and they can cause paralysis of the stomach. I was also told to stop Nortriptyline, Dexilant, and Zoloft. The Doctor said that he wanted to see how my stomach reacted without all of the drugs masking symptoms and that the drugs could be making the nausea/vomiting worse. He told me that 30% of people that take Zoloft have nausea and vomiting.

He wanted me all of all of these medications before I take any tests. He doesn't want the medications to skew the results. So, I have to go back down to Jacksonville the first week of February.

He also said that me not being able to keep down water was very strange and not a symptom of GP. He mentioned this many times.

The doctor said that if the gastroparesis was caused by a virus in March, then the good news is that it is temporary - the stomach will heal itself in a year or two.

The tests that I will be doing the first week of February at Mayo are:

Gastric Emptying Test - to retake again because he said that they shouldn't have taken it the first time around while I was hospitalized and on pain medication. I will have this test done for four hours and I'm nervous because I had such a hard time keeping the radioactive sandwich down the first time. I remember crying because I was in so much pain from the test. Going from eating nothing to eating an entire sandwich is rough.

Endoscopic Ultrasound (they can't do an MRI with my spinal cord stimulator) - they want to go in to see if there are any stones or anything in my liver that could be causing my upper right pain. They are also going to stretch out my esophagus if they feel it's too constricted while they're in there. The doctor wants to take a look at my biliary system.

Bravo pH Test - this will test for acid reflux to see if that's contributing to my problems.

Blood tests - he's going to check my liver enzymes, since they've been elevated lately. He wants to know why. He's also testing my TSH (thyroid), Cortisol levels, and doing a complete panel.

The doctor has low confidence in my GP diagnosis and GERD. He thinks that if I do have gastroparesis that something else is going on because I shouldn't be this ill. This doctor helped to make the first gastric pacemaker, so I'm in good hands. He was also wearing a bow tie and I was wearing a Doctor Who shirt, with a TARDIS on it.

I have a test on each day starting February 4th. I'm going to be extremely tired but at least they're going to do it out patient. I'm hoping that I can get some answers. I really want to feel better and not carry a bucket or bags when I go anywhere.


Scarlett said...

Wow Emily, what a day. I am really glad I read this as I was just prescribed a med I shouldn't be taking and now I will not start taking it! I will be promptly calling the doc tomorrow to let her know I've been informed that this drug is actually harmful to those with gastroparesis. I was already having my doubts when I was told it decreased appetite to which I have none to begin with. Thanks so much for sharing. I will have you in my prayers for upcoming appointments. The meal for the gastric emptying study is tough perhaps you won't have to eat the whole sandwich. I know I was told I didn't have to eat my entire meal which was actually scrambled eggs, toast, and something else.... can't remember... maybe ask how much you need to get in for the test to be effective? Just a thought. xo

Unknown said...

Wow! That doctor sounds so knowledgable and I love a man that wears a bow tie. Keep it up! :) :)