SonoCase (and studies): Renal colic, do we really need to get another CT?

38 year old male with a history of kidney stones c/o severe right flank pain, radiating to the groin, “feels just like my kidney stones” with small amount of blood in his urine, begging for pain meds. Ok, I know this is not the most mysterious case, but when I looked over his chart he has a radiology list of 8 CT scans over the last 5 years to evaluate for kidney stones! Why? Do we really work in an era where we MUST know the diagnosis instead of just being able to screen for the emergent conditions, and treat by using our clinical judgement… and bedside ultrasound? I sure hope not, because that’s not how I practice. This is not the first-time flank pain patient, although some would argue that you dont need to get a CT for that either if labs and ultrasound are clear/negative. This is also not the elderly patient that could have belly-badness that will die soon –  but not from CT scan-radiation-induced cancer, that’s for sure. Continue reading