Sunday, April 26, 2009
I saw a middle aged foreign woman the other day who had been in the hospital for several days. Her chief complaint was "right sided abdominal pain". It had started after a meal of chorizo at her home. I reviewed her chart. She'd had a CT scan, an upper endoscopy, a HIDA scan and an ultrasound. The data seemed to be pointing toward gallbladder pathology. When I walked in her room, she was standing, arms akimbo. She didn't look happy. There was a jug of golytely on the night table, presumably preparation for an impending colonoscopy.
-You're the surgeon, she said?
-I called my doctor in Colombia. He told me it is my gallbladder. He said this two days ago.
I pushed on her belly. She was mildly tender in the RUQ. The ultrasound had shown gallstones.
-He may have a point, I said.
-You doctors in America. Too much you do with the machines.
She's right, you know.