Ulcerative colitis is a form of Irritable Bowel Disease or IBD. Affecting millions of people in the US, typically in the prime of life, this uncomfortable, debilitating GI condition worsens without treatment. At Gastrointestinal Specialists in Troy, MI, your team of eight gastroenterologists diagnoses and treats ulcerative colitis, allowing people to have active lifestyles and long-term remission of symptoms.
Ulcerative Colitis: What Is It and Why Does It Happen?
Ulcerative colitis is an inflammation of the rectum and large intestine. Less severe than Crohn's Disease, which is another form of IBD, colitis hits the 15-to-35 and 50-to-70 age group, according to the Crohn's and Colitis Foundation.
Colitis symptoms seem to stem from the body's own immune system. Instead of attacking germs, the immune system targets the lower gastrointestinal tract, often leading to:
- Rectal bleeding
- Profuse and frequent diarrhea
- Weight loss
- Pain and cramping
- Bowel perforations
- Infections which do not resolve
- Psychological problems such as anxiety and depression
Managing Ulcerative Colitis
Your team of eight gastroenterology physicians diagnoses and treat ulcerative colitis in their state-of-the-art Troy, MI, facility. Symptoms help define the diagnosis. Additionally, an in-house colonoscopy visualizes the lining of the rectum and the entire length of the colon, accurately pinpointing the small open wounds characteristic of this difficult condition.
With a diagnosis in place, your GI doctor will customize your treatment plan to manage your symptoms and hopefully put them into remission.
Healthline says that medications must reduce the inflammation in the large intestine. These medications may include:
- Corticosteroids, such as prednisone
- Sulfa drugs
- Biologics which support the immune system
- IV infusion of Remicade (for remission of up to one year)
Additionally, for long-standing ulcerative colitis (more than 30 years), your GI doctor may recommend surgery, including removal of the colon and rectum.
There Is Hope
Your caring team at Gastrointestinal Specialists in Troy, MI, work tirelessly to help patients with a wide variety of gastrointestinal issues, including irritable bowel disease, Crohn's, and ulcerative colitis. Research and careful management produce an increasing number of remissions.
If you're exhibiting bowel symptoms, don't wait for a crisis. Please contact our office for an individualized consultation with one of our board-certified gastroenterologists. We'll answer all your questions carefully and compassionately. Phone the Troy office team at (248) 273-9930.
Could your frequent stomach problems be caused by irritable bowel syndrome?
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a common gastrointestinal disorder that can lead to problematic bowel changes and abdominal pain. Although this condition can happen to anyone, it is most common among women. If you’re dealing with stomach pains and other problems, you may be wondering if it could be irritable bowel syndrome. Read on to learn more about this condition and how the gastroenterology experts here at Gastrointestinal Specialists PC in Troy, MI, can help.
What are the warning signs of IBS?
IBS presents itself with these common symptoms and signs:
- Abdominal cramping
- Abdominal pain
- Diarrhea and/or constipation
- Feeling full or nauseous after eating
IBS symptoms may range from mild and intermittent to severe and persistent, with patients dealing with the latter grouping often finding that their condition greatly impacts their lives. This is when turning to our Troy office can help you find the relief and answers you need.
What causes IBS?
The cause of IBS is still unknown; however, there are certain things that may trigger IBS symptoms. These triggers include,
- Too much fiber
- Carbonated beverages
It’s important to recognize that IBS is not the same as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), which encompasses ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease.
How is IBS diagnosed?
While there is no specific test for IBS, our gastroenterology experts will go through your medical history and ask you specific questions about the symptoms you are experiencing. From there, a physical exam and additional tests may also be performed to rule out other problems such as celiac disease.
How is IBS treated?
While there is no one cure for IBS, our gastroenterologists can provide you with a custom treatment plan that may include,
- Diet recommendations and changes (e.g. FODMAP diet)
- Avoiding trigger foods
- Regularly exercising
- Sleeping the proper amount
- Staying hydrated
- Implementing stress management strategies
- Laxatives (for treating constipation)
- Medications to treat abdominal pain
- Anti-diarrheal medication
If you think you may be dealing with symptoms of IBS, it’s important that you find out what’s going on. The team here at Gastrointestinal Specialists in Troy, MI, is here to help. Call (248) 273-9930 today to schedule a gastroenterology appointment.
Many people develop hemorrhoids at some point, particularly between the ages of 45-65. Hemorrhoids are typically associated with pain, discomfort, itching, and irritation around the anus. They can also result in pain and discomfort during bowel movements. As uncomfortable as hemorrhoids can be, there are treatments that can help. See a gastroenterologist if you suspect you might have hemorrhoids. If a gastroenterologist determines you do have hemorrhoids, appropriate treatment can be prescribed to ease the pain and discomfort.
The exact cause of hemorrhoids is not necessarily known, but several factors or conditions do seem to increase the likelihood of development hemorrhoids. Factors associated with an increased risk for development hemorrhoids include:
- Family history of hemorrhoids
- Chronic constipation
- Sitting for extended periods
- Straining during bowel movements
Hemorrhoids often go away on their own, even without treatment. However, there are various options to ease the pain and discomfort of hemorrhoids. A gastroenterologist might recommend a variety of methods for easing the pain at home. These include taking over-the-counter pain relievers, and fiber supplements for softening stools. Other things that can help provide relief include soaking in a warm bath and applying a cold compress to the anus to reduce swelling.
In addition to at-home remedies for alleviating the pain and discomfort of hemorrhoids, there are medical procedures a gastroenterologist can perform to reduce the size of the hemorrhoids. Two popular procedures for treating hemorrhoids include rubber band ligation and injection therapy. These procedures can be performed if other treatments and remedies have not provided substantial relief.
When struggling with hemorrhoids, the itching, irritation, pain, and discomfort can interfere with your quality of life. Fortunately, there are treatments that can provide relief and even reduce the size of the hemorrhoids. See a gastroenterologist for the treatment of your hemorrhoids.
When it comes to colon cancer, the most reliable and preferred way of screening remains the colonoscopy. Here at Gastrointestinal Specialists in Troy, MI, your eight board-certified physicians highly recommend colonoscopies beginning at age 50. Read on to learn more here about colon cancer and how this important test could end up saving your life.
Some details on colon cancer
According to the National Cancer Institute, colon cancer is the third most common cancer among American adults today. Affecting the ascending, transverse, descending, and sigmoid colon (bowel) as well as the rectum, colorectal cancer typically begins with the development of non-cancerous polyps.
These small broccoli-like growths are located in the interior walls of the bowel. While most polyps are benign, some turn out to be pre-cancerous adenomas which eventually evolve into cancer if not removed.
Fortunately, with careful screening tests, early detection rates are high, which means a high cure rate as well. Accordingly, our Troy doctors advise in-office colonoscopies to look for cancers and to evaluate patients with complaints of chronic diarrhea or episodes of bleeding.
How colonoscopies work
The procedure begins with preparation, a process that involves the consumption of laxatives and a clear liquid diet the day before the colonoscopy. Then, day of the test, the patient fasts from all food and drinks after midnight.
The test itself takes about 30 to 40 minutes, during which most patients are given tranquilizers to relax them. Once the patient is properly sedated, the gastroenterologist inserts a thin, flexible tube into the anus and up through the bowels.
The tube causes no discomfort, and as it is equipped with a tiny camera and light, the doctor uses it to closely examine the interior walls of the colon. At this point, any small polyps can also be removed for analysis by biopsy.
Following the procedure, the patient spends some time in a comfortable recovery area. The physician then reviews the test results with the patient, after which an adult relative or friend drives the individual home. Biopsy results are available within a few days.
Find out more
Are you approaching the age of 50, or is it time again for your routine colon cancer screening? If so, please call Gastrointestinal Specialists in Troy, MI, for an appointment. You'll be comfortable and well-cared for in our state of the art facility. Phone (248) 273-9930 today!
Find out more about colon polyps and what it means if you have them.
Has one of our Troy, MI, gastroenterologists just found colon polyps during your routine colonoscopy? If so, you may be wondering what these masses are, why they occur and if this could put you at an increased risk for colorectal cancer. We have the answers you are looking for.
What are colon polyps?
A polyp is typically a benign growth that develops in the lining of the rectum or colon. They can vary in size and are often found in the colon. Polyps are very common in adults, particularly older adults. In fact, an average 60-year-old who doesn’t have any risk factors still has a 25 percent chance of developing polyps. While some polyps can be cancerous, most are harmless.
What can increase my risk for colon polyps?
Older age is the most common risk factor for polyps. If there is a history of colon polyps or colon cancer in your family then you may also be more likely to develop polyps. Other risk factors include:
- Being obese or overweight
- Having diabetes
- Smoking or using tobacco products
- Having inflammatory bowel disease (Crohn’s disease; ulcerative colitis)
Do polyps cause symptoms?
Most polyps do not cause any symptoms; however, if the polyp is large enough it could cause blood in the stools or rectal bleeding. Sometimes a sigmoidoscopy, which allows our Troy, MI, GI specialist to look at the lower section of the colon, can detect the presence of a polyp. In this case, our doctor will recommend a colonoscopy to have the polyp removed. While there are other screening tools available for detecting polyps, the most accurate tool is a colonoscopy.
How is a polyp removed?
If we find polyps during your colonoscopy we can easily remove them at the same time as your procedure. There are several ways in which your doctor can remove a polyp. The most common method is a wire loop biopsy or through a polyp resection (burning the polyp with an electrical current). Since the lining of the bowels is not sensitive, these methods will not cause discomfort. Sometimes a laboratory will examine the removed polyp to look for cancerous cells.
Are you dealing with blood in your stool? Is it time to schedule a routine colonoscopy? Your gastroenterology specialists in Troy, MI, is here to provide you with the comprehensive care you need to maintain good digestive health or answer any questions you have about gastroenterology.
Find out why everyone over the age of 50 should get a routine colonoscopy.
No matter whether one of our Troy, MI, gastroenterologists have just told you that you need to get a colonoscopy or someone you know is undergoing this procedure, it’s natural to want to learn more about it, why it’s performed and what to expect. We want to keep our patients informed about the treatments and procedures they undergo here at Gastrointestinal Specialists. Here’s what you should know about colonoscopies,
What is a colonoscopy?
A colonoscopy is a diagnostic and screening tool that allows us to thoroughly examine the colon and lower digestive tract. During a colonoscopy, a thin flexible tube, known as an endoscope, is inserted into the rectum. At the end of the endoscope is a camera, which allows our Troy, MI, gastroenterologist to be able to check the lining and health of the lower gastrointestinal tract to look for warning signs of colorectal cancer and other conditions.
Why is a colonoscopy performed?
Men and women over the age of 50 should start getting routine colonoscopies, even if they aren’t experiencing symptoms because this is the best screening tool for colorectal cancer. Even if you don’t have risk factors for cancer, it’s still important that you get screened. If results come back normal, then it’s likely that you won’t have to get a repeat colonoscopy for another 10 years.
Of course, if you are dealing with any changes in bowel movements, abdominal pain, rectal bleeding, or other symptoms that may be indicative of irritable bowel disorder, ulcerative colitis, or Crohn’s disease, then we may recommend getting a colonoscopy to determine the source of your symptoms.
How do I prep for a colonoscopy?
Your colon will need to be completely clear in order for us to perform a colonoscopy and to get the results we need. Therefore, we will provide you with specific instructions on food and drink prior to your colonoscopy. You will need to avoid solid foods for a day before your colonoscopy. We will also give you a colonoscopy prep for you to drink, and this prep will clean out the colon. On the day of the colonoscopy, you should avoid all food but you may drink water or consume other liquids beforehand.
What should I expect from the procedure?
A colonoscopy is a fairly quick procedure, usually taking around 20-30 minutes. If our Troy, MI, GI doctor does find polyps, we will remove them during your colonoscopy, which can lengthen the procedure. During the colonoscopy, you will be under the effects of conscious sedation, which means that you will be able to respond to the doctor if necessary, but you won’t remember the procedure or feel any discomfort.
Is it time to schedule your first routine colonoscopy? Dealing with abdominal discomfort, bleeding, or other gastrointestinal problems? If so, call (248) 273-9930 to schedule an appointment at Gastrointestinal Specialists in Troy, MI, today!
How your gastroenterologists in Troy, MI, can help you feel better
Ulcerative colitis, also known as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), is a condition that adversely affects your colon, causing pain that can be debilitating enough to keep you from enjoying your life. Fortunately, it can be managed and your gastroenterologists at Gastrointestinal Specialists in Troy, MI, can help. Read on to learn more!
The Basics on Ulcerative Colitis
Ulcerative colitis is caused by your immune system attacking the foods, bacteria, and other substances in the colon and treating them as foreign materials. During this process, your body sends white blood cells into your colon which causes inflammation, ulcerations, and pain.
According to the Mayo Clinic, some of the most common signs and symptoms of ulcerative colitis include:
- Chronic diarrhea, which can include blood or pus
- Chronic abdominal pain and cramping
- Rectal pain, rectal bleeding, and blood in your stool
- Frequent and urgent bowel movements
- Difficulty defecating
- Unintended weight loss
- Fatigue and fever
Ulcerative colitis treatment begins with a visit to your gastroenterologist who may prescribe a combination of medications including immune suppressors like Remicade, which works by keeping your immune system from producing excessive amounts of an inflammation-causing protein known as TNF-alpha.
Remicade is administered directly into your bloodstream intravenously. The procedure can be performed right in the office or in a treatment center. The initial treatment involves a series of 3 starting doses. After the initial administration, you will need maintenance doses every eight weeks.
Patients on Remicade have shown an improvement in their ulcerative colitis symptoms in 6 out of 10 cases. Many patients have gone into remission after one year of treatment.
Interested? Give Us a Call!
If you are having gastrointestinal problems and think you might have ulcerative colitis, it’s time to visit a gastroenterologist. Don’t suffer the discomfort and annoyance of ulcerative colitis symptoms when help is just a phone call away! To find out more about the causes and treatment of ulcerative colitis and other gastrointestinal conditions and diseases, call (248) 273-9930 Gastrointestinal Specialists in Troy, MI, today!
Are you wondering whether or not it’s time to schedule a routine colonoscopy?
A colonoscopy is something that every man and woman after a certain age should get as part of their preventive care. After all, a colonoscopy is the best and most accurate way to detect colorectal cancer during its earliest stages, when it’s most treatable. Since colorectal cancer is the third leading type of cancer in both men and women in the US (according to the American Cancer Society), it’s important to understand when to turn to our Troy, MI, gastroenterologists for a colonoscopy.
Did you just turn 50 years old? If so, then it’s time to schedule a colonoscopy. Even if you aren’t experiencing any symptoms or changes in the GI tract, you still need to get a colonoscopy. Of course, if you are noticing recurring symptoms such as abdominal cramping, nausea, diarrhea, or blood in the stool, you should visit your Troy, MI, GI doctor as soon as possible. To determine the cause of your symptoms, we may need to perform a colonoscopy.
What is a colonoscopy?
A colonoscopy is a screening and diagnostic tool that allows us to be able to get a clear and detailed picture of your large intestines. During this procedure, a small flexible tube with a camera is carefully inserted into the rectum and guided through the colon. This camera allows us to check for cancerous polyps, which we may be able to remove during the colonoscopy. If you are experiencing symptoms, a colonoscopy will allow us to look for the source of your issues, from internal hemorrhoids to ulcers.
Why is a colonoscopy so important?
This procedure is important for a number of reasons, depending on its purpose. For one, it’s an amazing tool to diagnose the cause of unexplained abdominal pain, diarrhea, bloody stool, and other gastrointestinal problems. A colonoscopy can also help us pinpoint the earliest signs of colon cancer so that we can treat it right away when there is less of a chance of it spreading.
Healthy men and women in their 50s should start getting routine colonoscopies. If you are at an increased risk for colon cancer, talk to us about whether it’s prudent to start getting screened earlier. If your first colonoscopy comes back normal and you are low-risk, you may not need another routine colonoscopy for a decade.
Contact Us Today!
Gastrointestinal Specialists PC in Troy, MI, is dedicated to providing you with a full range of services to diagnose or treat conditions of the gastrointestinal system, as well as the liver and pancreas. If it’s time to schedule a routine colonoscopy, call our office today at (248) 273-9930!
Colon cancer affects thousands of Americans. More than 95,000 people were diagnosed with colon cancer in 2016, according to American Cancer Society's statistics. One of the best ways to detect colon cancer is by visiting your Troy, MI, doctor for a video capsule endoscopy.
Video Capsule Endoscopy Screening:
This capsule has a small camera that's swallowed by patients and flows through their digestive system. This is a wireless technology that transmits several pictures using a small recording device. Your doctor downloads the images to examine if there are potential tumors, or sources of bleeding or pain.
It's a painless and non-invasive procedure that helps people detect early stages of cancer and is recommended for adults ages 50 to 75, according to the CDC.
In addition to colon cancer screening, this procedure detects:
- Inflammatory bowel disease (Crohn’s disease)
- Tumors in the small intestine
Colon Cancer Symptoms According to Your Troy Doctor:
Symptoms aren't always obvious. Here are the symptoms you need to keep an eye out for according to the doctors in Anchorage and Eagle River:
- Bowel Habit Changes: If you are suffering from Colon constipation, or diarrhea, for more than four weeks, that may be a sign of cancer.
- Incomplete Evacuation: If there are constant bowel movements, even if you've just had a bowel movement, then you need to contact your doctor.
- Fatigue: Colon cancer results in patients feeling weak and fatigued.
- Weight Loss: Unexplained weight loss.
- Blood in Your Stool: Hemorrhoids are usually accompanied by blood in stool, but may also be a sign of a more serious condition like cancer.
Scheduling an Appointment:
If you would like more information on video capsule endoscopy and how it can help you, don't hesitate to contact the doctors at Gastrointestinal Specialists. If you are in Troy, MI, call to schedule an appointment today at (248) 273-9930!
Is milk suddenly not agreeing with you? Find out if lactose intolerance is to blame.
Is your morning latte suddenly making your stomach do flips? Do you experience gastrointestinal upset whenever you enjoy a cheesy slice of pizza or cool down with a delicious scoop of ice cream? Our Troy, MI, gastroenterologists know that this can be disheartening but we can help provide you with the relief you need so that you can go back to enjoying the foods and drinks you love. But first, it’s important to know whether you should come in for an evaluation.
Do I have lactose intolerance?
Since there are many things that can cause an upset stomach, gas, nausea, and diarrhea, it can be difficult to know whether or not it’s dairy that’s truly the culprit. Of course, if you experience any of these symptoms about 30 minutes to 2 hours after consuming dairy products then it’s time to speak with one of our Troy GI doctors to find out if it could be lactose intolerance.
How is lactose intolerance diagnosed?
If you suspect that you might be lactose intolerant, it’s a good idea to start tracking your symptoms, whether you consumed milk or other dairy products beforehand, what medications or vitamins you are currently taking, or if you suspect that there could be another cause. Our gastroenterologists can determine whether or not you have lactose intolerance through this simple test:
Hydrogen breath test: Another test in which you have to consume a lactose-filled drink, the hydrogen breath tests use your breath rather than your blood to check hydrogen levels. Bodies that don’t digest lactose properly will affect the colon, which in turn will produce hydrogen and other gases that go through the gastrointestinal system and out through your breath. By measuring the amount of hydrogen on your breath we can also determine whether you might be lactose intolerant.
If you are dealing with nausea, stomach pain, diarrhea, and other issues and you think it’s due to dairy products, then it might be time to turn to Gastrointestinal Specialists in Troy, MI. Food allergies are common, but we can help make it easier.
If your doctor suggests a colonoscopy, you may not understand what exactly this crucial procedure entails. However, learning more about the step-by-step process and what you can expect during your treatment can help you feel more prepared and relaxed before you go in for your colonoscopy. Find out more about colonoscopy, when it is necessary, and what it means for you with Gastrointestinal Specialists in Troy, MI.
What is a colonoscopy?
A colonoscopy is a procedure which examines the inner lining of the colon to search for abnormalities such as pre-cancerous polyps. A long, thin tube with a camera on the end called a colonoscope is inserted through the rectum and advanced through the colon until it reaches the end of the large intestine. The procedure also allows your doctor to thread miniature instruments through the colonoscope to take biopsies or remove polyps.
Do I need a colonoscopy?
Doctors recommend having regular colonoscopies at least once every 10 years beginning at age 50. If you have a family or personal history of colon cancer, you will probably require more frequent colonoscopies. Those with a history of gastroenterological problems are more at-risk for colon cancer and may also need more frequent colonoscopies. Your doctor may also recommend colonoscopy if you have significant changes in your stool, unexplained weight loss, or other issues.
What can I expect from a colonoscopy procedure?
You will be asleep during the procedure. Your doctor will insert the colonoscope and begin advancing it through the large intestine. If they see a polyp, they may remove or biopsy it. Before your procedure, your doctor will prescribe you a laxative and ask you to fast. Follow your doctor’s instructions carefully as straying from them could cause complications with the colonoscopy procedure. After your procedure, you will likely feel a bit woozy from the anesthesia and need someone to drive you home.
Colonoscopy in Troy, MI
If you are over the age of 50, are at risk for gastrointestinal issues or colon cancer, or feel as though a colonoscopy could benefit you, you should consult with your doctor to ensure that this is the best course of treatment for you. For more information on colonoscopies or what to expect during your procedure, please contact your gastroenterologist at Gastrointestinal Specialists in Troy, MI. Call (248) 273-9930 to schedule your appointment for a colonoscopy today!
If you have ulcerative colitis find out the best ways to manage your symptoms.
Has one of our Troy, MI, gastroenterologists diagnosed you with ulcerative colitis? If so, you may be trying to learn everything you can about this condition, including how to treat it. Let our gastrointestinal specialists step in to provide you with the information you need to put your mind at ease and to reduce ulcerative colitis flare-ups.
What is ulcerative colitis?
This chronic condition causes inflammation and ulcers within the lining of the digestive tract, more specifically within the large intestines (also known as the colon) and the rectum.
When symptoms flare-up the sufferer may experience abdominal pain, rectal bleeding, diarrhea, loss of appetite, unexpected weight loss and fatigue. Everyone’s body responds differently, and symptoms of ulcerative colitis can range from mild to severe. Some people may experience regular and severe flare-ups while others may never experience a flare-up at all.
How is ulcerative colitis treated?
If symptoms aren’t present then you may not actually require treatment. Of course, our Troy, MI, GI doctors will create a treatment plan based on the frequency and severity of your symptoms. In most cases, your treatment plan will include both lifestyle modifications and medications.
Those with milder symptoms may be able to control their symptoms through a proper and balanced diet, antidiarrheal medications, and steroid medications (for when flare-ups occur). Those with moderate-to-severe flare-ups may require more long-term steroid medication to reduce inflammation and ulcers. The strength of the steroid medication will depend on the severity of your symptoms.
The goal of steroids is to reduce the length of your flare-ups and to send ulcerative colitis into remission. Immunosuppressants may also reduce severe inflammation. In rare cases, surgery may be required.
Can diet help with ulcerative colitis?
It’s important to understand that your diet did not contribute to you developing this intestinal condition; however, the foods you consume could affect flare-ups. This is why it’s important to find the right diet and lifestyle that works for you. This varies between people so don’t assume that a diet that works for one person with ulcerative colitis will work for you. It will take some trial and error, but common diets that do improve flare-ups include:
- Low-salt diets
- Low-fiber diet
- Low-fat diets
- Lactose-free diets
Talk to one of our GI specialists about which diet might improve and lessen your symptoms.
Gastrointestinal Specialists in Troy, MI, is dedicated to treating your gastrointestinal problems. No matter whether you are dealing with unexplained abdominal pain, stomach discomfort or other symptoms it’s important that you have a medical team by your side to provide you with the answers and individualized care you deserve. Call us today!
You have symptoms of gas, bloating and heartburn that you just cannot explain. Because your symptoms are happening frequently, your primary care physician wants you to see a gastroenterologist, a specialist who treats conditions and diseases of the gastrointestinal tract and liver. At Gastrointestinal Specialists in Troy, MI, your GI doctor has advanced training in the diagnosis and treatment of gastroenterology issues. Learn more about this medical specialty here.
What is the GI tract?
Basically, your gastrointestinal tract is one long, long tube. It starts with your esophagus and extends through your body to your anus, where waste products exit. In between the two ends, the GI system receives and processes foods, allowing your body to absorb the nutrients, filter the toxins and eliminate the indigestible parts as feces.
Just as with any bodily system, it can malfunction. Common GI disorders include:
- GERD, or acid reflux disease
- Gall stones
- Ulcerative colitis
- Irritable bowel syndrome
- Celiac disease
- Barrett's esophagus
- Hepatitis and pancreatitis
- Rectal bleeding, including hemorrhoids
- Difficulty swallowing
- Constipation and diarrhea
- Peptic ulcer disease
- Lactose intolerance
Your gastroenterology doctor partners with your primary care physician in pinpointing the causes of your symptoms and in providing medications, procedures and lifestyle counseling to alleviate them.
Treating the GI tract
You should see a gastroenterologist for precise imaging of the Gi tract and for procedures aimed at curing or controlling chronic or acute conditions. Your team at Gastrointestinal Specialists in Troy offer both on-site and in-hospital services such as endoscopy, colonoscopy, esophageal dilation, manometry (evaluates swallowing) stent placement and more.
For adults over 50, and earlier for those with GI cancer in their families, your GI doctor offers colonoscopy screening to keep ahead of the third most prevalent cancer in the United States--colon-rectal cancer (according to the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta).
Reasons to go
There are several reasons to see a gastroenterologist. They include:
- Excessive flatulence
- Sudden weight loss or gain
- A lump in the throat or trouble swallowing
- Black stools
Don't worryYour gastroenterologist has your best interests and your best health in mind. You can eat, digest and eliminate waste healthfully when your GI tract is properly tuned and disease-free. So talk with the experts at Gastrointestinal Specialists in Troy, MI. Call today for your personal consultation: (248) 273-9930.
Are you approaching the age of 50? If you are, you must add important health screening to your "to do" list. Yes, the American Society of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy says that people 50 and older should have their colons, or large intestines, tested for cancer. At Gastrointestinal Specialists, board-certified physicians provide you with the latest in gastroenterology diagnostics and treatments right on premises in Troy, MI. Learn here about the whys and hows of this important and life-saving test.
The numbers cannot be ignored
Some people think colonoscopy screening is simply unnecessary. However, health statistics tell a different story. The American Cancer Society states that more than 95,000 new cases of colon cancer are discovered every year in the United States. A study published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute also says that the number of cases found in people under fifty is rising.
So video-monitored colonoscopy remains the gold standard in diagnosing this potentially deadly cancer. Other less reliable exams include flexible sigmoidoscopy, stool blood test and digital rectal exam. Your board-certified gastroenterologist in Troy likely will recommend you receive a complete colonoscopy every ten years and more frequently if your test reveals benign or pre-cancerous polyps.
The prep is important
While bowel preparation for colonoscopy varies a bit from doctor to doctor, the aim of any pre-test medication is a totally cleansed bowel. One day before your test, you will consume only clear liquids, such as tea, broth and apple juice, and then drink laxatives in the amount prescribed by your physician. You must avoid anything with red or purple dye content.
The test itself
It lasts about 45 minutes. You will be sedated and likely will remember little of your exam afterward. The doctor gently introduces a flexible, lighted tube into your rectum and advances it through the intestine. The tube has a tiny camera on the end and sends live pictures to a monitor in the treatment room.
These pictures reveal any abnormalities, and also your doctor can take biopsies and remove polyps as needed. Afterwards, a friend or loved one must drive you home.
State of the art
At Gastrointestinal Specialists in Troy, MI, expect gentle, kind and accurate gastroenterology testing right in our own Endoscopy Center. Are you turning 50? Why not call the office to ask about screening for colon cancer? Phone (248) 273-9930.
For patients with difficulty swallowing, nausea, vomiting, unexplained digestive bleeding or abdominal pain, a procedure such as a colonoscopy may be needed to determine what is causing those symptoms. At Gastrointestinal Specialists in Troy, Michigan, we perform a variety of procedures for many different types of gastrointestinal symptoms. An endoscopy is a nonsurgical procedure that is used to examine the digestive tract and can be used to treat a variety of gastrointestinal problems for patients of all ages.
About Endoscopy Procedures and Colonoscopy Types
Individuals may need an endoscopy or a colonoscopy in Troy, Michigan if they experience some of the following things:
- Growths or polyps in the colon
- Digestive tract bleeding
- Bowel habit changes
- Unexplained stomach pain
Our team will explain to you exactly what will be done with your procedure. They will work with you to determine the best procedure and will inform you of the steps needed to have a successful test. Some endoscopy procedures offered include:
- Colonscopy: This tests for colorectal cancer. It uses a colonoscope to examine the lining of the colon (large intestine) for any abnormalities.
- Upper Endoscopy: This allows a doctor to examine the lining of the duodenum, stomach and esophagus. It is used to detect tumors, ulcers or inflammation and is more effective than x-rays.
- Capsule endoscopy: This procedure helps a doctor to evaluate the small intestine that can’t be reached with a traditional colonoscopy or upper endoscopy. It searches for the cause of bleeding and can detect tumors, ulcers in the small intestines, polyps and Crohn’s Disease. This procedure can take eight hours total.
Maintaining one’s intestinal health is a vital approach to one’s overall wellness. Our team of professionals can examine each patient and determine which gastrointestinal procedure will suit their pain and health the best. In order to schedule an appointment with our Troy, Mgastroenterologists, call 248-273-9930 today.
Learn more about the medication that could manage your inflammatory bowel disease.
Have you been diagnosed with an inflammatory bowel disease such as ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease? If so, then our Troy, MI, gastroenterologists may have recommended (along with modifying certain habits and lifestyles) that you take Remicade® to help manage your symptoms. What is Remicade® and what can it do to help your condition?
Remicade® is a prescription medication that is used to help treat both pain and inflammation. While it can be used to help manage pain caused by a variety of different conditions from certain kinds of arthritis to autoimmune diseases, this medication can also be a great way to keep your inflammatory bowel disease symptoms under control.
Those with Crohn’s disease deal with chronic inflammation of the intestinal tract. This can cause some pretty miserable symptoms ranging from abdominal pain to diarrhea. Ulcerative colitis also faces the same inflammatory symptoms. Those with severe ulcerative colitis may even develop digestive ulcers, which can be severely painful. If you have moderate-to-severe inflammatory bowel disease that hasn’t been responding to other medications or lifestyle changes then it might be the perfect time to talk to our Troy, MI, GI doctor about whether Remicade® might be able to better manage your symptoms.
Remicade® is typically administered through an IV over the course of a couple of hours. You will receive the first three doses a few weeks apart from each other, with maintenance infusions happening about every six to eight weeks after. Before getting Remicade® we will need you to come in for an evaluation so that we can understand more about your condition and your symptoms. We will also need to go through your medical history to determine if there are certain pre-existing health conditions that could be negatively impacted by this medication. We will also provide you with a list of possible side effects and when a certain side effect warrants coming into the office right away.
Whether you have questions about the medications you are taking or you are experiencing symptoms and require medical attention, Gastrointestinal Specialists in Troy, MI, is here to help every step of the way. Call us today!
Find out when a routine colonoscopy is recommended.
Has one of our Troy, MI, gastroenterologists recommended getting a colonoscopy? Wondering if this procedure is something everyone should get? Perhaps you’ve heard news reports talking about the importance of getting a colonoscopy and why everyone should. Maybe you’re wondering if it’s time to schedule a colonoscopy for yourself. Find out when you should consider getting this procedure.
What is a colonoscopy?
This diagnostic exam is the best way for our Troy, MI, GI doctors to check the health of your gastrointestinal tract. We use a small scope with a camera attached and direct it into the rectum and gently through the colon (lower intestinal tract). The camera allows us to look for polyps or other symptoms of colorectal cancer. This is by far the most effective way to detect colorectal cancer and even healthy individuals should get colonoscopies at a certain point.
When might someone need a colonoscopy?
There are many reasons why a colonoscopy may be recommended. Did you just turn 50 years old? If so, then you may want to add a colonoscopy to your routine preventive health care. These screenings could protect you against colorectal cancer, and both men and women should get them. Since African-Americans are at a higher risk of developing this type of cancer, it might be a good idea to come in starting around 45 years old.
Also, if you have a personal or family history of colon polyps or colorectal cancer then you may want to get a colonoscopy more regularly. When you come in for a consultation, we will be able to determine just have often you should come based on your risk factors and the results of past colonoscopies.
If you are dealing with rectal bleeding, unexplained abdominal pain or weight loss, or other gastrointestinal issues, then a colonoscopy may be the best way to detect the cause of your symptoms. If we find any polyps or suspicious growths during your colonoscopy, we can often remove them and biopsy them during this procedure.
Do you have questions about an upcoming colonoscopy? Want to schedule your next visit? Then call Gastrointestinal Specialists in Troy, MI, today. Whether you are dealing with symptoms or just turned 50, getting a routine colonoscopy could just save your life.
Find out how often you should come in for routine screenings and preventive gastrointestinal care.
When dealing with changes in your intestinal tract it can be difficult to understand what’s going on. Instead of just guessing what might be to blame it’s always a good idea to consult one of our Troy, MI, gastroenterologists for care. Find out when a checkup is a good idea and what symptoms warrant a visit to our office.
Why Should I See a Gastroenterologist?
Since our Troy GI doctors have received specialized and comprehensive medical training, we are able to provide more in-depth and effective colonoscopies and other procedures needed to diagnose and treat a variety of gastrointestinal problems than a regular doctor can. Having a GI specialist who knows what to look for when it comes to detecting polyps, cancerous growths and other issues is a boon to your intestinal health.
When Should I Schedule a Visit?
It might be time to consider booking an appointment with us if you are experiencing any of these symptoms:
- Abdominal pain or cramping
- Rectal pain or bleeding
- Diarrhea or constipation
- Acid reflux
- Excessive gas
- Lack of appetite
- Sudden and unexplained weight loss
- Pale stools
- Dark urine
Your Troy gastrointestinal physician is able to treat a full range of conditions. We will discuss your medical history and the symptoms you are experiencing before determining which kinds of diagnostic tests to perform.
Of course, you don’t always need to be sick or feeling under the weather to visit us. In fact, once you reach 50 years old, you should be coming in for routine colonoscopies. If you have a personal or family history of intestinal polyps, ulcerative colitis or colorectal cancer, we may recommend that you come in for a colonoscopy younger than 50. Both men and women should get colonoscopies and, depending on the results of your test, we will determine how often you should come in for these screenings.
Are you dealing with stomach issues? Don’t let intestinal distress affect you. Get the relief you deserve by turning to Gastrointestinal Specialists PC in Troy, MI. Call us today!
When you are otherwise healthy, it can be difficult to determine the cause of such symptoms as unexplained weight loss, abdominal pain, diarrhea or blood in your stool. If you are experiencing any of these unexplained symptoms, a gastroenterologist can conduct an exam called a flexible sigmoidoscopy to diagnose the problem. At Gastrointestinal Specialists PC, your gastroenterologists in Troy, MI can use this exam to check your colon for signs of polyps or even cancer.
What is Flexible Sigmoidoscopy?
Flexible sigmoidoscopy is an exam performed by gastroenterologists to examine the colon or lower portion of the large intestine. The purpose of the exam is to check for polyps or signs of cancer and it tends to be a quicker procedure than a full colonoscopy. To perform a flexible sigmoidoscopy, a flexible tube called a sigmoidoscope is placed inside the rectum and part of the large intestine. A small video camera positioned at the tip of the sigmoidoscope allows the gastroenterologist to view the interior of the large intestine.
The gastroenterologist can take tissue samples for biopsy if anything unusual is observed during the flexible sigmoidoscopy. As mentioned, the exam is limited to just the lowest portion of the large intestine. If polyps or other abnormalities are found during the exam, your doctor might recommend a follow-up colonoscopy to examine the entire colon. Your experienced gastroenterologist in Troy can advise you if a flexible sigmoidoscopy alone is sufficient to adequately evaluate the health of your colon.
Who Needs a Flexible Sigmoidoscopy?
A flexible sigmoidoscopy can be used as a screening method to check for signs of colon polyps, colon cancer or rectal cancer. Patients over 50 should be periodically screened for colon and rectal cancer. Screening at a younger age is recommended for patients with a family history of color or rectal cancer and for patients with a history of Crohn’s disease, IBD or ulcerative colitis. Additionally, patients experiencing certain unexplained symptoms might benefit from a flexible sigmoidoscopy. These symptoms include:
- Sudden Weight Loss (with no clear cause)
- Abdominal Pain
- Unusual Bowel Activity
- Bleeding from the Anus
A gastroenterologist can advise you if a flexible sigmoidoscopy is needed at this time, as well as help you determine your risk for developing colon polyps or colorectal cancer. To schedule a consultation with a gastroenterologist in Troy, MI, contact the Gastrointestinal Specialists PC at (248) 273-9930.
Ulcerative colitis (also known as inflammatory bowel disease) is a digestive system disorder that causes chronic inflammation in the bowel. It usually affects the colon (large intestine) and the rectum, and may increase the risk of developing colon cancer for some people. Ulcerative colitis and digestive disorders are diagnosed and treated by a specialist known as a gastroenterologist.
The GI doctors at Troy, MI based Gastrointestinal Specialists PC offer advanced diagnostic and treatment options for inflammatory bowel syndrome. Treatment options depend on how severe the condition is, and how much of the large intestine is affected by inflammation. Treatment can range from lifestyle and diet modifications, to medication and surgery.
Signs and Symptoms of Ulcerative Colitis
Cases of colitis range from mild to severe, and the symptoms can vary from person to person depending on the degree and location of inflammation in the intestine. The general symptoms include:
- Pain and abdominal cramping
- Unexplained weight loss
- Rectal pain and bleeding/blood in stool (schedule an appointment with a gastroenterologist for any instances of persistent bloody stool or rectal bleeding)
- Persistent diarrhea
- Problems/difficulty passing or controlling bowel movements
Most cases of inflammatory bowel disease fall in the mild to moderate range. Although colitis is a chronic condition, many people can experience long periods of remission.
Causes and Risk Factors of Ulcerative Colitis
Although there is no definitive cause for colitis, heredity and genetics may play a role in how likely a person is to develop the condition. While inflammatory bowel disease can affect people of all ages (and can be more severe when diagnosed in children), it most commonly develops in adults in their 20s. It also tends to be more prevalent in people of caucasian or Ashkenazi Jewish descent. Lifestyle factors like diet and stress may exacerbate, but not necessarily cause symptoms of IBS.
Find a Gastroenterologist in Troy
If you are experiencing signs and symptoms of ulcerative colitis or other gastrointestinal disorders, contact Gastrointestinal Specialists PC in Troy, MI by calling (248) 273-9930 to schedule a consultation with a GI doctor today.
Not sure when you should start having colonoscopies? Your Troy, MI gastroenterologists at Gastrointestinal Specialists, PC, share information about this important test and explain when you should have your first colonoscopy.
What is a colonoscopy?
A colonoscopy is a diagnostic test that gives your doctor an up-close view of your colon and the lower section of the small intestine. You'll receive anesthesia prior to the procedure and won't feel a thing. During the test, a thin, flexible scope is inserted into your anus. A digital miniature camera attached to the end of the scope transmits images to a monitor, giving your doctor a perfect view of your intestines. As the scope is inserted and retracted, your doctor looks for signs of polyps, lesions or other abnormalities.
When should I get a colonoscopy?
Most people should start receiving colonoscopies at age 50. Fifty is the recommended starting age because your colon cancer risk increases with age. Your gastroenterologist may recommend that you undergo a colonoscopy earlier if you have gastrointestinal issues.
Why is it so important that I receive a colonoscopy?
Colon cancer often doesn't cause any noticeable symptoms until the cancer is very advanced. Although colon cancer is very treatable during the early stages, advanced cancer is much harder to treat. Polyps in your colon can be a warning sign. Unfortunately, if you don't get a colonoscopy, you'll never know that you have them. Many polyps aren't cancerous initially but can become cancerous if they remain in your colon. During a colonoscopy, your doctor removes any polyps he spots and sends them to a laboratory to be tested for cancer.
Are there other reasons that colonoscopies are performed?
Colonoscopies are also used to help your doctor determine why you have chronic diarrhea, abdominal pain, frequent constipation, unexplained weight loss, anemia or changes in your bowel movements or habits.
How do I prepare for a colonoscopy in Troy?
You'll take laxatives as recommended by your doctor to prepare for your colonoscopy. Although this step can be a little unpleasant, it's absolutely necessary to ensure that your doctor has a clear view of your colon and small intestine.
Is it time for your first colonoscopy? Call your Troy, MI gastroenterologists at Gastrointestinal Specialists, PC, at (248) 273-9930 to schedule an appointment to discuss this important procedure. Protect your colon health with a colonoscopy!
Stomach pain makes it difficult to do the things you enjoy. Although over-the-counter remedies can be helpful in treating pain, sometimes these medications are strong enough to handle your symptoms. Your gastroenterologists, at Gastrointestinal Specialists, PC in Troy, MI, share information on symptoms and treatments for several stomach ailments, including ulcerative colitis.
Nearly everyone suffers from indigestion at some point in their lives. When pain, burning and a feeling of fullness strike during or after a meal, an over-the-counter antacid medication can help ease symptoms. Your gastroenterologist may also suggest medications that help reduce stomach acids, such as proton pump inhibitors or H2 receptor antagonists.
Gastritis causes abdominal pain, vomiting, nausea, indigestion and other unpleasant symptoms. Bacterial and viral infections can cause gastritis, as can stress, medication side effects or drinking large amounts of alcohol. If your gastritis is caused by a bacterial infection, your doctor will prescribe an antibiotic. Proton pump inhibitors and H2 receptor antagonists can also help treat gastritis.
Small pouches form in the lining of your digestive tract when you have diverticulosis. If those pouches become inflamed or infected, you may experience abdominal pain, tenderness, fever, nausea, and vomiting. Oral antibiotics are usually very effective in treating infections, although surgery may be needed in severe cases.
Ulcerative colitis is a type of inflammatory bowel disease that can cause sores in your rectum and large intestine. If you have this disease, you may experience abdominal pain, cramping, diarrhea, rectal bleeding or pain, fever, weight loss, changes in bowel habits and fatigue.
Anti-diarrheal medications can help relieve severe diarrhea while acetaminophen is recommended for pain relief, as other common pain relievers, such as naproxen sodium or ibuprofen, can make your symptoms worse. Prescription anti-inflammatory medications help reduce pain and other symptoms caused by inflammation. Remicade, a medication that stops the immune system from producing too much TNF-alpha protein, is effective in slowing or stopping damage from the disease and may even lead to a remission. In severe cases, ulcerative colitis can be life-threatening. In these cases, surgery to remove the colon and rectum may be needed.
Do you suffer from ulcerative colitis or another painful stomach condition or disease? Find out how a gastroenterologist can help you by calling your Troy gastroenterologists at Gastrointestinal Specialists, PC, at (248) 273-9930.
Colorectal cancer affects nearly 150,000 new patients a year. However, this common and life-threatening disease is highly preventable. A colonoscopy can detect colorectal cancer long before symptoms present themselves. This makes this procedure incredibly important, especially for people who are over the age of 50. Get more information on colonoscopies with help from your Troy, MI doctors at Gastrointestinal Specialists.
What is a colonoscopy?
A colonoscopy is a medical procedure which allows doctors to visually see the lining of the rectum and colon. The procedure is performed using a colonoscope, a long, thin tube with a camera attached to the end. Doctors use colonoscopy procedures as a preventative measure for cancer as it can detect the presence of precancerous growths called polyps. A colonoscopy can also investigate the warning signs of gastrointestinal issues.
When is a colonoscopy recommended?
It is recommended that men and women over age 50 who are at average risk for developing cancer undergo a colonoscopy test at least every 10 years. This allows doctors to find and remove precancerous polyps, which could prevent colorectal cancer altogether. At-risk patients might need a colonoscopy more often. Symptoms of gastrointestinal irritation like rectal bleeding, sudden or unexplained weight loss, chronic diarrhea, constipation or irregular stools often require a colonoscopy to allow your doctor to find the root cause of the problem. Additionally, treatment for inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and investigation into the cause of an abnormal MRI or CT scan also call for a colonoscopy.
What can I expect during a colonoscopy procedure?
Before a colonoscopy, your doctor will require you to perform a colon cleanse which consists of drinking a special solution and maintaining a clear liquid diet. This lasts one to two days and empties the colon for the test. The day of your test, your doctor will give you a sedation medication to help you relax. You may fall asleep during the procedure. Your doctor inserts the colonoscope into the anus and moves it through the rectum and colon. Air is used to inflate the colon so your doctor can see its lining properly. If necessary, tiny tools threaded through the colonoscope help your doctor biopsy the tissue or remove polyps. After the test, you will recover for about an hour. Due to the medications, someone will need to drive you home after the procedure. You may then return to your normal diet.
For more information on gastrointestinal issues or colonoscopies, please contact your doctor at Gastrointestinal Specialists in Troy, MI. Call (248) 273-9930 to speak with an associate about scheduling your appointment for a colonoscopy today!
While ultrasound is a fantastic and widely used medical tool, unfortunately, it does have a few limitations. For example, sometimes the images provided by an ultrasound can be blurry, especially if the organ being examined is deep within the body. This is when endoscopy and endoscopic ultrasonography by the gastrenterologists of Gastrointestinal Specialists in Troy, MI is a fantastic alternative.
What is Endoscopic Ultrasonography?
Endoscopy is the process of inserting a tube into the body in order to take pictures of the digestive tract. Ultrasound is the process of using sound waves to take images of the inside of the body. When the two are combined, the result is endoscopic ultrasonography.
A relatively new tool, endoscopic ultrasonography offers the advantages of both endoscopy and ultrasound in a single procedure. With endoscopic ultrasonography, the gastrenterologists of Gastrointestinal Specialists are able to get a much clearer picture of the inside of a patient's body to diagnose and treat various medical conditions.
What is Endoscopic Ultrasonography Used For?
The gastrenterologists of Gastrointestinal Specialists use endoscopic ultrasonography for a number of purposes, including the following.
- Finding and assessing the severity of various cancers
- Finding and assessing various lung diseases
- Finding and assessing various digestive issues
- Finding pancreitits
- Determining the cause of fecal incontinence
- Finding tumors and other abnormalities
- Guiding the draining of cysts and other fluids
- Assisting in biopsy
Advantages of Gastrointestinal Specialists Endoscopy and Endoscopic Ultrasonography
Endoscopic ultrasonography is a minimally invasive, low-risk procedure that provides the gastrenterologists of Gastrointestinal Specialists additional and detailed information about a patient's medical condition. The procedure is performed on an out-patient basis and typically only takes between 25 and 45 minutes. The procedure is low-risk and is considered safe for most people.
If your doctor is concerned that you may have a serious underlying health condition, but your tests are coming back inconclusive, schedule an appointment with the gastrenterologists of Gastrointestinal Specialists in Troy, MI. Get an endoscopy, and get the answers you need.
Find out more about this medication and how it can treat certain gastrointestinal disorders.
Has your Troy, MI gastroenterologist recently diagnosed you with Crohn’s disease and prescribed Remicade® to help treat your symptoms? Right now you may have a lot of questions both about your condition and this medication. We are here to answer as many of your questions as possible so that you can breathe a little easier.
When is Remicade® often recommended?
The purpose of this medication is to provide long-lasting results rather than just temporarily alleviating the symptoms of Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. Remicade® is often used for treating those with moderate to severe cases, and also for those who have not responded well to other treatments.
How do I take Remicade®?
Your gastroenterologist in Troy, MI will administer this medication through an IV so that the treatment can immediately go to the bloodstream and start working. Remicade® will be administered at 0, 2 and 6 weeks. After these three initial phases you will then be given maintenance treatments about every 8 weeks.
Are there any side effects?
As with any treatment there are always the possibility of side effects. This medication can lower your immune system, which can leave your body more susceptible to infection. Patients with heart failure should let us know of your medical condition prior to this treatment as some patients with heart failure aren’t right for Remicade®. Learn more about yourrisks before starting this medication.
Will I still need Remicade® therapy if I start to feel better?
Some patients will experience a remission from symptoms once they start their maintenance therapy. Even though you may feel better you should continue your therapy sessions in order to sustain your remission.
Of course every patient is different and will have their own personal questions. That’s why your Troy GI specialists are here to help. Turn to Gastrointestinal Specialists for all of your gastrointestinal needs.
Welcome to the Blog of Gastrointestinal Specialists PC
Gastrointestinal Specialists PC would like to welcome you to our blog. Here you will find informative and useful postings about gastroenterology and our practice.
At Gastrointestinal Specialists PC we believe that educated patients are better prepared to make decisions regarding the health of their digestive system. Our blog was designed to provide you with the latest gastroenterology developments and valuable health advice from our dedicated team.
Gastrointestinal Specialists PC hopes you find our blog to be a great resource for keeping up to date with proper digestive health care and treatments.
We welcome all comments and questions.
-- Gastrointestinal Specialists PC
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