The Gastroenterologist is a physician with dedicated training and unique experience in the diagnosis and treatment of disorders of the gastrointestinal tract (oesophagus, stomach and intestines) and hepatobiliary system (liver, gall bladder , biliary tree and pancreas ).

Gastroenterologists treat conditions such as:

  • gastrointestinal bleeding
  • gastrointestinal cancer
  • anaemia 
  • inflammatory bowel disease, eg Crohn’s disease (inflammation of the lining of the digestive system), ulcerative colitis (inflammation and ulceration of the lining of the rectum and colon)
  • short bowel syndrome
  • jaundice 
  • management of alcoholic, viral hepatitis and autoimmune liver disorders (
  • diverticulitis - inflammation of the diverticula  in the intestine
  • gastroenteritis
  • hepatitis

Common procedures/interventions performed by the gastroenterologist include:

  • diagnostic and therapeutic upper and lower gastrointestinal lendocsopy
  • small bowel endoscopy
  • endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP)– an endoscopic technique mainly used to diagnose and treat bile duct and pancreatic duct conditions
  • endoscopic ultrsound (EUS)
  • intestinal and liver biopsy
  • paracentesis (puncture of the wall of a cavity using a hollow needle)
  • insertion of parenteral nutrition line (intravenous feeding lines)
  • planning and aftercare of patients undergoing liver transplant

Sub-specialties

The CCT sub-specialty is hepatology

Many gastroenterologists develop sub-specialty interests such as:

  • hepatology 
  • pancreaticobiliary diseases 
  • inflammatory bowel disease
  • functional bowel disease
  • tropical diseases
  • gastrointestinal cancer and its prevention
  • endoscopic surveillance
  • upper GI disease (diseases of the oespahagus and stomach)
  • small bowel disease
  • pancreatic disease
  • transplantation
  • medico legal issues in medicine
  • clinical pharmacology
  • inherited cancer syndromes
  • clinical nutrition

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