Gastroenterology is a branch of medicine that concentrates on the diagnosis and treatment of diseases of the gastrointestinal tract, including the esophagus, stomach, small intestine and large intestine (colon), liver, gallbladder, and pancreas. Frequently, a gastroenterologist is called in cases of abdominal pain, rectal bleeding, or change in bowel habits when the diagnosis is unclear or where specialized diagnostic procedures are necessary. All gastroenterologists at The Baton Rouge Clinic are board certified in the subspecialty of Gastroenterology.
Special procedures called endoscopy are performed by our doctors for either diagnostic or screening purposes. Upper endoscopy (often referred to as EGD or gastroscopy) is used to study diseases of the upper GI system, while colonoscopy is limited to the lower bowel and at times the very last portion of the small bowel (the ileum).
Our specialists now even utilize one of the newest breakthroughs in GI technology—a small capsule that, when swallowed, transmits and records images of the small bowel—for diagnoses that would otherwise have been too difficult.
Routine screening is recommended for individuals without a colon cancer history starting at age 50 and then repeated every 10 years, provided that there have been no polyps identified. If you have a history of polyps, then your screening intervals will vary and should be discussed with your doctor.