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Avatar universal

Colonoscopy required before biospy will be scheduled?

Hi, newly diagonosed with Hep C.  Probably had it for 33 years.  First visit to a GI where he spent less than 15 minutes with me.  Did not have my genotype test back.  Sent me for an adbominal sonogram and is requiring a colonoscopy before he will schedule a liver biospy!  Why in the world would a colonoscopy be a requirement for a liver biopsy.  Is that the "normal" procedure?  I understand the sonogram, that makes sense.  The waiting part of all of this is difficult and he wants me to wait longer for a biospy because of a colonoscopy?  Anyone else have to do that?  Any doctors out there that can tell me if that is a reasonable requirement.  I have no issues with my colon.  This is the first time I've had anything other than normal colds, etc. - ever!  Besides the fact that I'm "that age" when I'm supposed to have one, this makes no sense.
11 Responses
Avatar universal
I can't recall hearing about anyone who was required to have a colonoscopy in order to get a biopsy.
But like you said, you are at the age for one so I'd just go ahead and get it.
I hate the waiting too.

Good luck,
Mike
1669790 tn?1333666195
This sounds like an unusual request, especially when you only spend 15 minutes with the GI and was given no explanation.  I think you deserve an  answer on why this has been suggested other than being a good idea to do if you're over 50.  Maybe this procedure is the bread and butter of the GI's practice?  

Hopefully the GI has a lot of experience with treating HCV, currently has several patients under his care and keeps up with the latest information.  The needs of a HCV patient are much greater than others being treated in their office, so hopefully you'll receive the proper attention from their staff.  If you see any more red flag and problems within the office,  finding the best GI or Hepatologist to guide you through this challenging treatment is in your best interest.  I'm not suggesting that you jump ship and find another doctor, but do realize that you get to make that choice if you're not pleased with the care received.  

Best of luck as you begin
Avatar universal
I haven't read anywhere that anyone has been required to do a colonoscopy prior to scheduling a biospy.  I did read on the information given to me about the colonoscopy that the clinic where I am going for the procedure, is owned by physicians!  That answers that as far as I'm concerned.  He needs to make a BMW payment!
As far as that GI, I sprinted from his office crying.  He was annoyed by my questions, arrogant, condescending and never once asked how I was doing or feeling (except to ask if I had been having indegestion or heartburn).  He didn't have all my labs from my PCP and the results of whatever test it is that shows my genotype hadn't come in. Still, he does not get to join my health provider team.  Medical "Care" isn't that what they call it?  There was no "care" anywhere.  Moving on.  Have appt 9/7 with another GI.  Still all very new to me and scary.

There are so many horror stories about treatment!  
1669790 tn?1333666195
Sometimes you have to go with your gut and you've done just that.  Try to do as much research as you can prior to selecting your next doctor.  You might have to drive to a large city nearby, but finding someone competent is very important while guiding you through trt.  Take your time and make the best choice you can.   The amount of follow up with the doctor and his staff with the specialty pharmacy is very important and if they drop the ball you end up suffering the consequences.  

Good choice and good luck in your search.
Avatar universal
I am going through the exact same thing. Had Cat Scan Friday and Colonoscopy coming this Tuesday...they won't proceed without the testing. My Doctor did spend quite a bit of time with me and has indicated that they want to be sure there are no other chances of cancer or serious illness prior to treatment. Could be the additional money for the practice, but I haven't had one and I am 53....figured I might as well know that everything is OK before starting this journey. Good Luck!

You certainly deserve to know exactly why they are requesting any test.

Vann~
Avatar universal
Thanks.  I live in Dallas so it shouldn't be that difficult.  Don't really understand if a GI is okay or if I seek a specialist and if so, what kind.  Heck, I don't even know my genotype yet or know how my liver has been effected.... This is all very unsettling.
374652 tn?1494815035
nothing wrong with getting a second or third opinion.  You have to feel good about your doctor
Mary
446474 tn?1446351282
Beside everyone's good points, you are 51 years old. Everyone over 50 should be screened for colon cancer. If this is your first visit to a GI and your primary doc hasn't had you have a colonoscopy it may be just a routine matter of having you screened.

" I have no issues with my colon. This is the first time I've had anything other than normal colds, etc. - ever!". You do have some degree of liver damage after 33 years of hepatitis which is why you are doing a biopsy, correct? So you do have a chronic medical condition that is not normal. If you were to have colon cancer I am afraid you wouldn't know it until it is too late. Typically there are no symptoms until stage 4 of the cancer. The reason colonoscopies are done is to catch any cancer early which is when it is very curable.
This is the same reason a liver biopsy is performed on someone with hepatitis C. Many persons with stage 4 cirrhosis have no symptoms and feel "fine". It doesn't mean they are "fine" because they don't feel ill as yet. I have HCC, liver cancer, I feel the same as when I only had cirrhosis. No symptoms from the cancer. But it doesn't mean I am "fine". Persons with HCC  do not have symptoms/not "feel" ill, until they have very little time to live...I am lucky it was found early during my routine abdominal scans.

All I am saying is it is important to be screened for colon cancer (especially if there are cases of colon cancer in your family) on a regular basis after age 50. Screening for colon cancer is preventative medicine and is a smart thing for all people to do. IMHO

Good luck with your colonoscopy and biopsy.
Hector
Avatar universal
Thanks for your input Hector.  I'm sorry to hear about your cancer!  
I am going to do the colonoscopy.  Like we said, I am at that age!  Just annoyed and anxious about having to wait to know more about the Hep C and what that means and whats going to happen and.....   but sounds like I better get used to some not knowing and a bunch of waiting!  
Appreciate that folks respond quickly on this site and its encouraging to see people caring about each other and offering advise and support!
Onward through the Fog - as we used to say in the 70s (when I likely got this disease)!
1654058 tn?1407162666
I had endo and colonoscopy, needle xray guided biopsy, psych eval, eye exam, Doppler sonography, heart test, nutritionist consult.. They probed everything. I assumed it was to rule out anything that was going wrong. I ended up being transferred to transplant unit where they began my tx. It took about 5 mos. My Dr said the transplant center wanted all these items in my file before I was referred. originally my MELD was 16. It got down to 6 and I'm ending 2 mos of tx. I asked all the specialist and the nursing staff if my original doc was good w liver disease n was assured by all he was. He was abrupt n basically told me I would die w/o transplant. Not a grrat bedside manner, but he got me where ibwantes to be. Just another perspective. Good luck! Karen :)
Avatar universal
I am 43, probably have had hcv for 28 yrs, I have had endo (had swalowing problems) a colonoscopy (family history of colon cancer) an eye exam,seen a nutritionist ( I Highly Recommend) a doppler sonogram of my abdomen, guided needle biopsy, a heart stress test with enhancing dye imaging (family history of heart disease)  its taken nearly 2 years  to get all this done, it has been a long slow and sometimes frustrating trip, but I think worth it.
grade 4 stage 3
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