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Ask the Medical Expert Archives 2000-2004

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Week of September 10, 2001

    Question:  A scan was done in 1996 (due to a persistent fever I had when I was pregnant) and I was diagnosed with a small stone, and was told that ESWL would be able to treat it. In 1997 a PCNL was done but some residual remain. Since then many ESWL have been carried out (every 1 to 3 months). I have to drink plenty of water 24 hours a day. Augmentin is effective in my treatment of infection. What is the side effect of having long term ESWL treatment? What are other solutions? Other than surgery, are there any herbs that can help? If I am to get pregnant again, what are the risk?    Dr. McLaughlin's Answer

    Question:   I am a 38-year-old female with a history of hypothyroidism for 5 years. After a work-up with an Endocrinologist for severely suppressed TSH levels while on Synthroid, a 24-hour free cortisol urine test (lab values 20-100) showed values of 121. A pituitary MRI was negative. A repeat 24-hour urine showed a cortisol level of 22. How do you know which test is correct? Should re-testing be done and is there still a concern for Cushing's? Also, does Cushing's present with chronic yeast infections? I understand that Cushing's is difficult to diagnose, however, with two such different lab values where do you go from here? Thank you!    Dr. McLaughlin's Answer

    Question:   I have two questions of most importance. What is the correlation of liver disease with diabetes mellitus and how toxic is dioxin/agent orange to the human liver? I would be very appreciative if the above questions could be answered.    Dr. McLaughlin's Answer