4 Questions to Ask Your Gastrointestinal Specialist
Primary Care 360 is proud to provide patients from Hensley AR, Sherwood AR, and White Hall AR, with the exceptional services of our gastrointestinal specialists. For more information on gastrointestinal services, call us or visit us at your nearest location.
If you are consistently experiencing issues with digestion, bowel movements, or abdominal pain, you will likely benefit from seeing a gastrointestinal specialist. At Primary Care 360, our primary care physicians and gastrointestinal specialists would be happy to evaluate your symptoms and provide you with any testing or treatment as needed to get to the bottom of your issues and help you start feeling better.
What is a gastrointestinal specialist called?
The medical title for a gastrointestinal specialist is a gastroenterologist. Like any other medical doctor, a gastroenterologist completes four years of medical school. After medical school, gastroenterologists complete three years in an internal medicine residency, followed by two to three years in a gastroenterology fellowship.
What does a gastrointestinal specialist specialize in?
Gastrointestinal specialists specialize in evaluating, diagnosing, and treating disorders within the gastrointestinal tract. As such, their area of expertise involves the following organs and areas of the body:
- Bile ducts
- Colon (large intestine)
- Epiglottis (located behind the tongue at the top of the larynx)
- Pharynx (part of the throat located behind the mouth and nasal cavity and above the esophagus)
- Salivary glands
- Small intestine
With such expertise in treating and evaluating the health of such organs, gastroenterologists can effectively treat the following disorders and conditions:
- Celiac disease
- Colon cancer
- Colon polyps
- Crohn’s disease
- Hepatitis C
- Inflammation of the colon or pancreas
- Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
- Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
- Liver disease
- Stomach or intestinal ulcers
- Ulcerative colitis
- And more!
In order to evaluate, diagnose, and treat such conditions, gastrointestinal specialists are skilled and trained at colonoscopies, endoscopic ultrasounds, liver biopsies, sigmoidoscopies, and more.
When should I see a gastrointestinal specialist?
If you are dealing with any of the conditions listed above or are having problems with any of the organs or bodily functions that gastroenterologists specialize in, it is a good idea to see a gastrointestinal specialist. With that in mind, some symptoms to pay attention to that would require the expertise of gastrointestinal specialist include the following:
- Abdominal pain
- Acid reflux
- Blood in the stool
- Difficulty swallowing
- Persistent constipation or diarrhea
- Problems with digesting your food
- Unexplained weight loss
You should also see a gastrointestinal specialist for various cancer screenings if you are over the age of 50 to check for colorectal cancer, intestinal cancer, stomach cancer, and others, or if you require a colonoscopy.
What is the benefit of seeing a gastrointestinal specialist over my family doctor?
While minor issues and illnesses involving the gastrointestinal tract can be safely assessed and treated by your family doctor, there are other situations where seeing a gastrointestinal specialist is more beneficial, especially if a colonoscopy is required or concerning conditions are suspected by your family doctor. In such cases, your family doctor can likely refer you to a gastrointestinal specialist in your area. Gastrointestinal specialists are typically able to provide more advanced care and treatment for GI disorders than family doctors. With that said, if you come to Primary Care 360 for gastrointestinal care, you can receive both primary care and gastroenterology services, as the physicians at our clinic specialize in both medical disciplines.
If you live in or around Hensley AR, Sherwood AR, or White Hall AR, and require the services of a gastrointestinal specialist, we welcome you to come to Primary Care 360! For an appointment, please feel free to call us, schedule one through our website, or visit one of our clinics for a walk-in appointment. We serve patients from Sherwood AR, Hensley AR, White Hall AR, Little Rock AR, Jacksonville AR, Maumelle AR, Cabot AR, Bryant AR, and Conway AR.