A gastroenterologist is a doctor who has special training in the management of diseases of the gastrointestinal tract and liver.
What is Gastroenterology?
Gastroenterology is the study of the normal function and diseases of the esophagus, stomach, small intestine, colon and rectum, pancreas, gallbladder, bile ducts and liver.
It involves a detailed understanding of the normal action of the gastrointestinal organs:
- Movement of material through the stomach and intestine (motility)
- Digestion and absorption of nutrients into the body
- Removal of waste from the system
- Function of the liver as a digestive organ
It includes common and important conditions such as:
- Colon polyps and cancer
- Gastroesophageal reflux (heartburn)
- Peptic ulcer
- Crohn's disease
- Biliary tract disease
- Nutritional problems
- Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
What Makes Gastroenterologists Different?
Gastroenterologists complete advanced training to provide comprehensive care for patients with a wide variety of gastrointestinal ailments.
Studies show that gastroenterologists perform higher quality colonoscopy examinations and comprehensive consultative services when compared to other physicians. This translates into more accurate detection of polyps and cancer by colonoscopy when performed by gastroenterologists, fewer complications from procedures and fewer days in the hospital for many gastrointestinal conditions.