Gastroenterology

Gastroenterology is a subspecialty of Internal Medicine dealing with non-surgical disorders of the esophagus, stomach, small intestine, colon, liver, gall bladder, and pancreas.

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What is Gastroenterology?

Gastroenterology is a subspecialty of Internal Medicine involving disorders of the esophagus, stomach, small intestine, colon, liver, pancreas, and gall bladder.


What are some of the common symptoms a Gastroenterologist might treat?

Patients with a variety of digestive complaints or problems – abdominal pain, bleeding, heartburn, ulcer disease, hepatitis, colon polyps and cancer, diarrhea or constipation, gallstones, pancreatitis - will often see a gastroenterologist for evaluation and treatment.


What is an endoscopy?

The upper and lower intestinal tract is examined with a long, thin, flexible endoscope in order to detect abnormalities in the esophagus, stomach, small and large intestine, or bile ducts. Biopsies and polyp removal are possible during the procedure. Active bleeding sites can often be treated. Narrowings (strictures) of the gut are often dilated.


How do I prepare for an endoscopic procedure?

Fasting is usually required for at least six hours prior to an endoscopy. Evaluation of the large intestine (sigmoidoscopy or colonoscopy) will require additional preparation. Patients are sedated with intravenous medications and usually have little or no recollection of the procedure. After recovery, the patient will require a drive home. Immediate resumption of a regular diet is the rule.


What are some common effects of endoscopy?

Mild gas pains” are often present after the procedure, but will soon resolve. More serious complications (bleeding, perforation) are extremely rare.

 

Call (414) 226-4020 for more information or to schedule an appointment with one of our Gastroenterologists.