Patient Success Story

Dr. Kevin T. Barnett, elective and general surgeon, talks about a patient who had a difficult diagnosis and successful outcome.

Patient background

About a year ago, a gentleman came in who was having chronic back pain and also had anemia. He had a thorough workup, was seen by gastroenterology, had quite a few tests, and we saw him in the office. He definitely had some upper abdominal pain. He was found to have a gallstone, so we went ahead and took his gallbladder out. It didn't really explain the anemia, but he had a thorough GI workup where they looked in with the camera and studied his stomach, his colon, his small intestine. They really didn't see anything. We took his gallbladder out thinking that was the etiology of his upper abdominal pain radiating to his back. It really didn't improve things, so we continued to work him up and eventually had him redo the small bowel studies.

Problem discovered and pain resolved

Then, it was found that he had a small bowel mass. A robotic small bowel resection was done through three little incisions and then one bigger incision where he took the small bowel out. That took care of his pain. I can't explain how the mass wasn't seen on the the first round of GI studies that he had, but the resection took care of his pain and eventually took care of his anemia. He was much happier when he came back in because he had been been struggling with this for about a year until we figured it out.