Sharing Mayo Clinic

Stories from patients, family, friends and Mayo Clinic staff

Items Tagged ‘Gastroenterology’

March 1st, 2017

After Years of Pain, a Clear Diagnosis Restores a Teen’s Life

By SharingMayoClinic SharingMayoClinic

Sanan Malkadjian came to Mayo Clinic after suffering for years from mysterious bouts of severe stomach pain. Her care team at Mayo was able to arrive at the right diagnosis and get her the treatment she needed.

— Written by Sanan Malkadjian

I was only 14 at the time. I would be ashamed of myself because of how often my stomach hurt. It came to a point where no one would believe the excruciating pain I was facing. This was pain unlike no other.

My doctors here in Michigan would blame one another. They told me it was my menstrual cycle, or I was stressing out too much, or even that I had too many bladder infections. Every single time, I was misdiagnosed.

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Tags: Clinical Genomics, Dr Magnus Halland, Familial Mediterranean Fever, gastroenterology

November 10th, 2016

Minimally Invasive Bariatric Procedure Brings Relief, Joy in Food Again

By SharingMayoClinic SharingMayoClinic

A minimally invasive procedure at Mayo Clinic helped Stephanie Cortez combat debilitating gastrointestinal symptoms and regain control of her body.Stephanie Cortez had been battling the scale for most of her 47 years. Weighing 240 pounds, the Lake Park, Georgia, resident decided to undergo gastric bypass surgery in 2008 in the hopes of losing a hundred pounds.

Stephanie made steady progress for the next six years. She adopted and maintained a healthier lifestyle and better eating habits. Then she hit a roadblock. In 2014, Stephanie developed a bleeding ulcer in the stomach pouch created during her surgery.

Though the ulcer healed, scar tissue created additional problems, including a narrowing of the area between the stomach pouch and intestine. The condition, called the gastrojejunal anastomosis, caused an intestinal obstruction.

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Tags: Dr Scott Lynch, Dr Victoria Gomez, Gastric Bypass Surgery, gastroenterology, Mayo Clinic in Florida

September 24th, 2016

Liver Transplant Allows Young Father to Be There for His Family

By SharingMayoClinic SharingMayoClinic

Thanks to a living-donor liver transplant at Mayo Clinic, Bryan Duncan overcame a life-threatening liver disease and has been able to return to life with his young family.

Bryan Duncan didn’t think twice about the lab tests he had as part of a routine medical checkup in the fall of 2014. A 29-year-old father of two small children, Bryan led a busy life, didn’t have any health problems, and felt fine.

When the test results came back, though, they showed enzyme levels in Bryan’s liver were higher than normal. This unexpected finding kicked off more than two years of extensive medical care. It brought Bryan from his hometown of Mountain View, Arkansas, to Mayo Clinic's Rochester campus, where he was diagnosed with a rare liver disease, and where he eventually received a life-saving living-donor liver transplant.

“The way my disease works, if I had waited for a deceased donor, I probably would have been too sick for a transplant,” Bryan says. “Being able to have a living-donor transplant opened up the opportunity for me to get the second chance I needed.” Read the rest of this entry »

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Tags: Dr Nicholas LaRusso, gastroenterology, Hepatology, liver transplant, Living donor transplant, Mayo Clinic Transplant Center, Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis

June 6th, 2014

Coping with a Rare Disorder: Cronkhite-Canada Syndrome

By Susana Shephard susanashephard

2014-06-27David Hirschy of Prescott, Arizona, has worn many hats  from record producer to chef to silversmith. In fact, his love of food made him think something was wrong a few years ago when he lost his sense of taste. He began to have other symptoms, too, which led him to Mayo Clinic in Arizona where he was diagnosed with the extremely rare Cronkhite-Canada syndrome  so rare that there have been less than 500 cases reported in the past 50 years.

In the following video, David and his Mayo physicians, Lucinda Harris, M.D., gastroenterologist, and Giovanni De Petris, M.D., pathologist, share his story.



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Tags: Arizona, Cronkhite-Canada, Cronkhite-Canada syndrome, David Hershey, David Hirschy, Dr De Petris, Dr Harris, gastroenterology, Giovanni De Petris, Hirschy, Lucinda Harris, pathology, rare disease, rare disorder

November 6th, 2013

Life after C. difficile

By SMHNadmin mayoclinic

Dianne Shea thought that the fevers, chills, vomiting, nausea and endless bouts of diarrhea from C. diff would take away her independence. But after a fecal transplant, she says, "My life began again."  

Diane Shea with her fan clubWritten by Dianne Shea

I've been a paraplegic and a Mayo Clinic patient for more than 10 years. My legs decided to stop working over a period of just a few short months due to a spinal tumor. So I didn't think I was a stranger to adversity. Then I met a nasty little bug they call C. difficile. The name is not ironic. At first I thought I had a very violent form of the flu with fevers, chills, vomiting, nausea and (the worst by far) countless, endless bouts of diarrhea.

My days were filled with nothing more than being assisted to the bathroom, cleaning up, getting back into bed, then starting all over again, weaker than before. I required around-the-clock care. I couldn't get dressed, could hardly eat anything, didn't have enough energy to do the smallest of tasks, and couldn't have any fun. Most importantly, I couldn't get through physical therapies for my legs.

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Tags: C difficile, diarrhea, Dr Darrell Pardi, Dr Sahil Khanna, Fecal Transplant, gastroenterology, Matthew Clark PhD, patient stories, spinal tumor, vomiting

May 31st, 2013

Adventures of a 31-year-old Pancreatic Cancer Survivor

By Cynthia (Cindy) Weiss cindyweiss

Dorylee Baez (in purple) and a group of friends and supporters enjoy a zip lining adventure at Toro Verde in Orocovis, Puerto Rico.

Dorylee Baez (in purple) and a group of friends and supporters from the newly formed Asociación Puertorriqueña del Cáncer del Páncreas enjoy a zip lining adventure at Toro Verde in Orocovis, Puerto Rico.

Dorylee Baez lives fearlessly.

Whether flying down a zip line or organizing a pancreatic cancer patient group in Puerto Rico, she plunges into life with zest.

The 31-year-old academic advisor at Universidad del Este in Carolina, Puerto Rico, is known as someone who is tenacious, overcoming whatever obstacles get in her way to achieve and achieve her goals.

For instance, Baez attended college while simultaneously working and caring for her ailing mother who was suffering from lupus. After her mother died, Baez pressed on to honor her memory and completed a bachelor’s degree in education and a master’s degree in college-level education administration. But then, at 29, Baez learned she had a large tumor in her pancreas. Not the diagnosis she was expecting when she went to the doctor.

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Tags: American Indians, chemotherapy, colon cancer, FL, Florida, gastroenterology, Hematology, Hepatology, liver cancer, MayoClinicFL, mononucleosis, oncology, pancreatic cancer, patient story, radiation therapy, Whipple Procedure

March 27th, 2013

Gift from Daughter to Dad: a Liver Donation

By Makala Arce MakalaJohnson

Chuck Lewensten ran a successful business, hunted in Africa and played tennis with his fiancé, Jill.

Nonalcoholic steatohepatitis changed all that. By the summer of 2010, the disease had ravaged Lewensten’s liver, leaving him homebound and dependent on his family for care. Instead of hunting trips, Lewensten’s travels took him only to the emergency room.

“We were watching our dad die,” says Amy Konsewicz, one of Lewensten’s daughters.

That’s when Konsewicz’s sister called Mayo Clinic. The call led to appointments with several Mayo Clinic physicians, including Michael Charlton, M.D., a gastroenterologist.

“Dr. Charlton was so compassionate,” says Jill. “We felt like he cared and was going to do everything he could for Chuck.”

That included helping place Lewensten on the liver transplant waiting list. But Dr. Charlton also suggested another option: Living donation.

Konsewicz says she and her three siblings were eager to donate, but she knew immediately that she would be the one.

Testing proved her right; her blood type and liver size made her a compatible donor. But before surgery could take place, Lewensten needed to be convinced to accept the gift of life from his daughter.

At first, he refused. But as his health deteriorated, and after much reflection and many conversations with his family and doctors, Lewensten relented.

Amy on her wedding day and her dad ChuckSurgery took place on Oct. 5, 2010. Two years later, Lewensten walked Konsewicz down the aisle on her wedding day. At the reception, Konsewicz and her new husband held a dollar dance that raised close to $1,000 for Mayo Clinic.

Konsewicz doesn’t minimize her experience, which included post-surgical complications. But she says she would donate “100 times over again.” Especially if she could donate at Mayo Clinic.

“Being at Mayo was one of the best experiences of my life,” she says. “Everyone there, from the doormen to the doctors, cares about human beings. I’m a hospital snob now. I’m constantly comparing, and there’s no better place.”

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Tags: Amy Konsewicz, Chuck Lewensten, Dr. Michael Charlton, gastroenterology, liver transplant, living donation, Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease, nonalcoholic steatohepatitis

March 11th, 2011

Crohn’s diagnosis helps ‘The Big Street’ find road to recovery

By stacytheobald stacytheobald

The below article comes from our Sharing Mayo Clinic print publication:

Brandon StreetAt 6 feet 4 inches tall and more than 200 pounds, Brandon Street could easily be described as “big.” In high school, his nickname was “The Big Street.”

When this active young man who enjoyed playing sports began to have irregular and difficult bowel movements and occasional blood in his stool, he didn’t worry too much. He thought his diet was to blame.

“I tried to hide it in high school. I didn’t want people to know there was a problem,” says Street, a native of Douglas, Ga.

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Tags: Brandon Street, Crohn's Disease, gastroenterology

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