The gastroenterology is the field of medicine deputy to the study, diagnosis and therapy of pathologies which manifest themselves at the expense of esophagus, stomach, intestine, colon-rectum and in general of all the organs that constitute the ‘ digestive tract .
What does the gastroenterologist do?
The gastroenterologist is a specialist in gastroenterology, who deals with diagnosing, examining, and treating diseases of the digestive system .
Functional and inflammatory diseases of the esophagus and stomach (upper tract) as well as the intestine and colorectal (lower tract) are among the pathologies that the gastroenterologist treats more frequently. In addition to these, the following are mentioned:
- food allergy
- celiac disease
- hiatal hernia
- gastroesophageal reflux disease
- Crohn’s disease
- ulcerative rectocolitis
- other chronic inflammatory bowel diseases
- intestinal parasitosis
The gastroentelogo uses the following diagnostic tools :
- laboratory tests ( blood test , urine test , parasitological examination, etc.)
- diagnostic-operational endoscopic examinations ( gastroscopy , colonoscopy , rectosigmoidoscopy ) that allow to evaluate the inside of the examined organs in order to analyze their anatomy, functionality and possible pathologies (diagnostic endoscopy). Through endoscopic examinations it is also possible to give rise to small tissue samples to be subjected to histological analysis and small interventions under local anesthesia such as, for example, the removal of polyps (operative endoscopy) ;
- radiological examinations (radiographs of the digestive tract, opaque enema , Tac, Rmn).
When to ask for an appointment with the gastroenterologist?
The occurrence of a symptomatology affecting one or more organs of the digestive system is a good reason to book an appointment with the gastroenterologist. The pathology may consist of gastric or epigastric pain, heartburn, abdominal pain, constipation or prolonged areas, which continue for over a couple of days.
Other cases are: if laboratory tests reveal anomalies that make it possible to suspect the presence of pathologies at the gastric-intestinal level ; when you experience new symptoms related to the disease of the digestive system from which you suffer; if you have been living with a certain disease for some time, but you are experiencing problems managing it; if you feel the need to receive a second opinion on the diagnosis and / or management of the disease you are suffering from.