Posted in Diabetes

Gallbladder and Liver Checkup: Looking for GI Issues

A few weeks ago, I had an appointment with a gastrointestinal specialist to get a checkup. I have issues of acid reflux and stomach discomfort that show up at times so I figured I should get it checked out. Sometimes I can pinpoint certain foods that may cause it and avoid those. However, there are other times where it seems to be a bit random and I can’t find a cause. Plus my digestion has never been super great in the first place. I have had digestive issues for as long as I can remember so any help I can get to make my digestion better is always welcome. I have found that exercise (even brisk walking) helps a bit to get my metabolism going and improve my digestion a bit, but it hasn’t been a sure cure for it.

After discussion of my symptoms with the GI specialist, we decided to get a gallbladder and liver ultrasound done as a starting point, which I got done yesterday. It required a 6-8 hour fast (no water included). Therefore, I got it done in the morning so my insulin regimen and meal times wouldn’t get too messed up. Had to write a note on the fridge the night before that said “No Breakfast+No Water+Bring Breakfast” as a reminder, especially since it’s easy to forget that I couldn’t drink water either.

The procedure was quite simple and lasted about 20 minutes or so. I got some gel smeared onto my stomach, and was told to take deep breaths and hold my breath at certain times while the ultrasound probe got moved around my stomach to get the images. Then, the technician consulted with a radiologist for a few minutes to see if they found anything abnormal. Of course, when he said he would go consult with a radiologist my mind immediately started thinking negative thoughts: “oh my gosh, he must have seen something odd!”, “what if I have liver disease?”, “what if I have gallstones?”. When he came back out, he said all looked good and they didn’t find anything concerning in the preliminary overview. He said they would look over it again and I should expect to see final results posted in a couple of days. At this point, I breathed a huge sigh of relief. It’s funny how my brain always starts catastrophizing. I REALLY have to work on re-training my brain to stop doing that as it’s not a helpful behavior. Bad brain!

Once I was done with the ultrasound,  I was ravenously hungry as it was an hour and a half past my breakfast time and I didn’t have a bedtime snack the night before as I was still quite full after dinner. I sat in the waiting room and ate my breakfast while contemplating some of the art they had on the walls. Then, I spent at least 15 minutes trying to find my way out of the hospital as it is a humongous maze where all the hallways look the same. Thankfully, one of the staff noticed that I seemed lost and helped me find my way out. Got my morning walk in, for sure.

Doing some art contemplation while having breakfast at the hospital after my lab work was done.

I am happy that all looked good with my liver and gallbladder. Still not sure what’s causing my issues though. A while back I got tested for celiac, and that came back negative. The other thing we had discussed was maybe food sensitivities or a pancreatic enzyme deficiency. Both of these are definitely plausible. I don’t have all the symptoms of pancreatic enzyme deficiency, but given that I am diabetic, I think it’s definitely plausible, especially since I clearly have issues with certain types of carbs. I also worry about food sensitivities, as if I do have issues with certain foods, that may restrict my diet even more. I honestly don’t know what I would eat if that was the case.  Sigh…We’ll see what the next step is to figure out what’s going on.



Hi all! This blog is a space to share my journey and day-to-day experiences with managing diabetes. Please note, I am not a doctor or nutritionist, just a patient that lives with the condition.

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