What to expect from a GI

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New Member

Date Joined Sep 2016
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 9/28/2017 9:28 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi. I'm extremely frustrated with my experience with GI's. I was diagnosed with Crohn's last September and have gone to 2 GI's. Both have made some major mistakes in my treatment that have hampered or worsened my health. Here's my question:

What should I expect from my GI? Should I expect them to do routine scopes if I'm having symptoms? What lab work should they have me complete? How often should routine visits take place? Should they educate you on the medication options or should I do this research on my own?

I'm a year into severe Crohn's with no prior symptoms or history so this has been a whirlwind of misery.

Thanks for your advice.

Elite Member

Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 10096
   Posted 9/29/2017 7:59 AM (GMT -7)   
What you should expect varies and it is hard to advise you without knowing the first thing about your Crohn's or your treatment history.

Scopes are normally done routinely once every 3-5 years. But if you are flaring you can expect them to be done more frequently - how often, it's impossible to say. When was your last scope and how have things changed since then?

A complete blood checkup usually consists of FBC (Full Blood Count), liver function test, urea & electrolytes (this is the kidney function test), and CRP & ESR (inflammatory markers). Iron and B12 levels ought to be tested regularly as well, but this isn't standard where I am.

Routine visits are once or twice a year, if things are going well. But if you start flaring, you ought to have a means of seeing your GI quickly. You should have somebody you can contact: an IBD nurse or the GI's secretary, if not the GI himself.

GIs won't typically give you all the medication options unless you ask. Don't be scared to ask what other medications there are and if they are suitable for you. I would do some research of your own though (try only to stick with reputable websites and avoid websites with something to sell like the plague). Even the best GIs can miss things out, and the worst ones are bloody useless.

What did the 2 GIs do wrong? We can try to help you get better treatment, but need to know more about your Crohn's and the treatments you have tried so far.
Dx Crohn's in June 2000. (Yay skull)
Tried: 5-ASAs, azathioprine, 6MP, Remicade, methotrexate, Humira, diets.
1st surgery 20/2/13 - subtotal colectomy with end ileostomy.
2nd surgery 10/7/15 - ileorectal anastomosis. Stoma reversed and ileum connected to the rectum.
Current status: Chronic flare. Do I have any other kind?
Current meds: 50mg 6MP; Entyvio (started 3/11/16)
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