Gastroenterology is the field of medicine relating to the treatment of the gastrointestinal tract. Gastroenterologists focus on the treatment of diseases of the digestive system, this includes a range of organs starting at the mouth and ending at the rectum.
Digestive health centers and specialists in Florida
From time to time, everyone can experience common digestive problems, like an upset stomach, gas, heartburn or bloating.
Although these symptoms may feel uncomfortable to talk about, they shouldn't be ignored. A properly functioning digestive tract is essential for overall health, impacting your ability to sleep, eat and even breathe normally.
Learn more about our related specialties
Gastrointestinal (GI) conditions we treat
Our GI doctors care for a wide range of conditions affecting the digestive tract, including:
- Abdominal pain syndrome
- Acid reflux and heartburn
- Anal fissures and fistulas
- Barrett's esophagus
- Celiac disease
- Cirrhosis of the liver
- Clostridium difficile (C.diff)
- Colon polyps
- Crohn's disease
- Diarrhea (acute and chronic)
- Fecal incontinence
- Gallbladder disorders, including:
- Gallstone pancreatitis
- Gas (in the digestive tract)
- GI bleeding
- Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
- Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
- Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
- Lactose intolerance
- Ostomy care
- Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD)
- Non-cardiac chest pain
- Primary biliary cirrhosis (PBC)
- Rectal bleeding
- Rectal prolapse
- Ulcerative colitis
- Viral hepatitis
- Wilson disease
Cancer screening to diagnose conditions
One of the most common concerns for individuals experiencing digestive issues is the possibility of colorectal cancer, also called colon cancer. Our GI doctors and surgeons use early screening and innovative procedures to prevent, diagnose and treat colorectal cancer. In addition to:
- Esophageal cancer
- Liver cancer
- Pancreatic cancer
GI services and treatments we offer
Our digest health centers use offers specialized services and comprehensive digestive health treatment. Many of these services and treatments consist of some form of endoscopy, which do not require surgery.
Endoscopic GI treatments
Endoscopic refers to the use of an instrument called an endoscope (a thin, flexible tube with a tiny video camera and light on the end). A gastroenterologist or surgeon uses an endoscope to diagnose and treat various problems of the GI tract.
Capsule-based pH monitoring
This diagnostic method involves endoscopic placement of a pH probe, which is a small capsule, in the esophagus. You return home for 72 hours and note any symptoms as the capsule wirelessly sends information about your health back to a monitor. This allows your doctor to evaluate any needs for surgery or other procedures.
During a colonoscopy, a thin, flexible tube is inserted into the rectum. Your doctor uses an endoscope to internally examine your colon and rectum.
A colonoscopy is the most common method used to screen and help detect early signs of colorectal cancer. The American Cancer Society now recommends adults 45 years old and older to begin regular colon cancer screenings.
Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP)
During this procedure, your physician lowers an endoscope through your GI tract and inserts a catheter through the scope. X-rays are taken and your physician is able to view any possible stones, tumors or narrowed bowel ducts or segments.
Endoscopic ultrasound (EUS)
This procedure uses a special scope with an ultrasound tip to produce high-quality images, allowing for quick diagnosis, staging of cancers and evaluation of masses, cysts or other health conditions.
Esophageal impedance-pH study
This is a test to determine whether contents from the stomach are coming up into the esophagus. The test evaluates acid and non-acid gastroesophageal reflux.
This examination uses a lighted scope instrument to view the esophagus, stomach and nearby small intestine to sample tissue, treat GI bleeding, repair ulcers, allow for long-term feeding and stretch narrowed areas of GI tract.
High-resolution esophageal manometry
This is a procedure in which a small flexible tube is placed into the nose and passed into the esophagus. It is used to determine how well your esophagus is working by measuring the pressure and coordination of the esophageal muscles.
By gauging the strength of these muscles, doctors may learn more about your symptoms, like difficulty swallowing, chest pain or gastroesophageal reflux.
Modified barium swallow study
This procedure involves ingesting foods and liquids containing barium sulfate, a contrast dye that sharply outlines the mouth, throat and esophagus on X-ray. Using real-time X-rays, or fluoroscopy, we can observe the movement of the barium on a monitor. This helps us determine the cause of difficulty swallowing.
Video capsule endoscopy (VCE)
During this outpatient procedure, you will swallow a vitamin-sized capsule equipped with a miniature video camera, which wirelessly sends images to a monitor, before you return to the hospital eight hours later. Physicians use images of the small bowel to identify sources of obscure GI bleeding and diagnose diseases such as Crohn's disease.
Our renowned GI services extend to your children, too. With a team full of specialists, we work tirelessly to resolve any discomfort or disorder your child may be experiencing.
Some of the pediatric GI conditions and symptoms we treat include:
- Difficulty swallowing
- Stridor (a wheezing sound while breathing)
- Unexplained cough
Pediatric GI services we offer
Your child's health is just as important to us as it is to you. That's why our pediatric GI doctors offer a variety of diagnostic services to better understand your child's GI health. Some of these services we tailor to your child's needs include:
- Esophageal impedance-pH study
- High resolution esophageal manometry
- Modified barium swallow study
Digestive health specialists
HCA Florida is proud to be a part of a widespread network that spans across the state. Our esteemed group of specialists is committed to providing you and your loved ones with high-quality digestive care. Some specialists you may work with include:
- Colorectal surgeons
- Medical oncologists
- Pediatric gastroenterologists
- Radiation oncologists
- Surgical oncologists
Looking for a location?
Related Gastroenterology Blog Posts
Fresh knowledge and insights in and around healthcare industry.