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Free Standing Fluid

My ten year old son woke up with severe pain under his left rib cage. I took him to the ER. After several hours in the ER the pain subsided and he was released. The blood work came back fairly normal and the sonogram showed nothing abnormal with the exception of Free Standing Fluid in the abdominal cavity. Should I be worried?
3 Responses
Avatar universal
Hello from a fellow Fredericksburg area resident!

I would definitely follow up on this as free fluid in the abdomen is not a "normal" finding.  When you say "fairly normal" for the bloodwork, what was it that wasn't exactly 100% normal?

I would definitely suggest getting him in to see his pediatrician tomorrow with a possible referral to a pediatric gastroenterologist.  At the very least, he probably needs to have a CT scan to get a better picture of his abdomen and see if they can determine exactly what the free fluid is.

I know of a good gastro doc in Fredericksburg if you'd like his name, however, I'm not sure if he takes pediatric cases - he may, however, be able to suggest someone good.  Send me a message if you'd like his name.

In the meantime, definitely if his pain returns, he starts running a fever or vomiting, by all means, take him back to the ER.

Let me know what you find out.
Avatar universal
I totally agree with the above post.  You need to know what "fairly normal" means and why.  Where did this fluid came from, and why.  When the doctors don't explain things to us, we need to be insistent in asking them where and why, what needs to be done, etc.  Call a Pediatric Gastroenterologist and let them know he has free standing fluid in his abdominal cavity...hopefully because he has this they will get you in quickly.  You can also contact the patient advocate at the hospital you took him to and get answers.  They will speak with the doctor(s) who saw your son and have them explain all of this and with their help get him in to see a specialist quickly.  Keep us posted, nothing worries us more than our children being ill.  Best wishes.
Avatar universal
Well…..the pediatrician basically dismissed everything. Meaning that he agreed with the ER doctor; my son pulled a muscle and he will be fine in a couple of weeks. The area is still tender to the touch (a week later). Also, he stated that it is normal to have some fluid in your abdomen. So now I don’t really know what to think. I have been going to this pediatrician since my eldest son (16) was four…..that’s over twelve years. But to be honest, my intuition is saying that these doctors (the ER & pediatrician) are wrong. My husband (a cancer survivor – Hodgkin’s) thinks that we should just take the advice of the doctor and be done with it.  He of course has a lot of faith in doctors. Anyway, thanks again for listening. If anything changes, I’ll let you know.
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