Stomach and abdominal problems have affected everyone at one point or another in their lives. These conditions may be caused by several reasons, such as indigestion or ingesting harmful substances. Other causes may be due to various underlying conditions. Issues involving your digestive tract can be dealt with by a gastroenterologist Lima. This medical profession has training and expertise in dealing with digestive tract problems. More about them and what they do is discussed further below.
What is Gastroenterology?
Gastroenterology is a medical field that concentrates on the health of the gastrointestinal tract, digestive system, or liver.
Gastroenterologists professionals deal with the diagnosis and treatment of GI conditions. This typically follows a referral from your primary care physician.
They are mainly known to perform endoscopic procedures by using specialized devices to view the GI tract and offer a diagnosis. Although they do not perform surgeries, they work closely with a GI surgeon. They can be found in various hospital or clinic settings.
Health issues diagnosed and treated by gastroenterologists
These professionals have extensive knowledge and training in the regular food movement through your stomach and intestines, how waste is removed from the body, the absorption of nutrients, and how your liver assists the digestion problems.
This enables them to diagnose conditions like:
· Colon polyps
· Gastroesophageal reflux, commonly known as heartburn
· Gastroesophageal reflux disease
· Peptic ulcers
· Nutrition issues
· Biliary tract and gall bladder ailments
· Irritable bowel syndrome
The GI system also involves your mouth, but a gastroenterologist does not handle issues involving your mouth but is dealt with by dental specialists or dentists specializing in oral cavity health. In addition to mouth issues, your anus or rectum diseases are not handled by a gastroenterologist but a proctologist.
A specialized gastroenterologist deals with several areas, including:
· Inflammatory bowel disease
· Pancreatic disease
· Endoscopic surveillance
· Gastrointestinal cancer
· Reflux esophagitis
Procedures performed by a gastroenterologist
The range of nonsurgical procedures they perform include:
· Endoscopic ultrasounds to examine the lower and upper GI tract and other internal organs
· Upper endoscopy to diagnose conditions affecting the stomach, food pipe, and small intestine
· Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography did identify stones or tumors in the bile duct area
· Colonoscopies to detect colon polyps or colon cancer
· Liver biopsies to assess fibrosis and inflammation in your liver
· Sigmoidoscopy to evaluate pain or blood loss in the lower large bowel
· Feeding tube insertion to insert feeding tubes in the patient’s abdomen
· Examining the small intestine
Your local physician may identify situations that may warrant you to see a gastroenterologist, which includes:
· Unexplained difficulty swallowing
· Unexplained blood in your stool
· Digestion issues like diarrhea or constipation
· Abdominal pains
· Frequent acid reflux
Gastroenterologists do not perform surgeries but are vital in identifying issues affecting your digestive system. They are better placed compared to general practice doctors in isolating these issues. If you suspect you have any digestive tract problems, you can check us out online or call our offices in Lima, OH.