09.2019 Celiac Disease

Celiac Disease

  “For people with celiac disease, the gluten-free diet is like insulin for diabetics” –Dr. Alessio Fasano What is Celiac disease? Celiac disease is an autoimmune disease where the ingestion of gluten leads to damage of the small intestine, which affects genetically predisposed patients. The primary job of the small intestine is to absorb minerals and nutrients from the food we eat. If your small intestine becomes damaged, it is not able to absorb vital nutrients and minerals that our bodies need. This leads to symptoms that result due to malabsorption and can result in serious illness.  First-degree relatives of patients with celiac disease have a 10-15% risk of celiac disease. Celiac disease affects 1 in 133 Americans. (more…)

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Hispanic Heritage and Liver Disease

Since 1988, September 15 through October 15 is dedicated as Hispanic Heritage Month. This month is used to celebrate the histories, cultures, and contributions of American citizens whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean, Central America, and South America. Although it encompasses 4 geographic areas it includes 21 countries. Argentina Belize Bolivia Chile Colombia Costa Rica Cuba Dominican Republic Ecuador El Salvador Guatemala Honduras Mexico Nicaragua Panama Paraguay Peru Puerto Rico Spain Uruguay Venezuela (more…)

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No more excuses for putting off your colonoscopy

Of all the excuses for putting off a screening colonoscopy, one of the most common is a busy schedule. At Digestive Health Specialists, we understand. For our patient’s convenience, we made Saturday appointments available at our Thomasville Procedure Center in August. We are happy to say that our schedule was filled, so we decided to provide Saturday appointments again in September. The upcoming Saturday appointment dates are: September 14 September 28 (more…)

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Gastroparesis: Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment

    What is Gastroparesis? You can break down the word into two components: Gastro/Gastric meaning stomach Paresis meaning paralysis This translates to paralysis of the stomach. Gastroparesis is a condition in which the stomach empties abnormally slow. The function of the stomach is to churn and grind your meal and then, contract to squeeze food through to the small intestine. For people who have gastroparesis, this function does not occur properly. (more…)

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Summer can cause dehydration

Avoid Dehydration This Summer: Your Digestive Tract Will Thank You!

  Summer is here and there is a lot to do when the weather is this beautiful outside, family picnics, enjoying the beach, endless hours on the golf course, or even spending time in your backyard enjoying a barbeque. But unfortunately, too much fun in the sun can be dangerous to your body. Excessive heat exposure can cause dehydration, which in turn can wreak havoc on your digestive system. (more…)

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Diverticulosis

Diverticulosis/diverticulitis: Fiction and Nonfiction

I have been working in GI for a long time now and find that over the years there has been quite a lot of confusion when it comes to diverticulosis and diverticulitis. Most people think that every time you have pain in the abdomen it is “diverticulitis” flaring up. They do their best to avoid seeds and nuts and have avoided popcorn at the movies for years! There are dietary misconceptions that have been perpetuated by the medical community as a whole for many years and even today. This short posting will hopefully help to define these conditions, how they develop and how to treat them when they occur and will address the question of dietary restrictions. (more…)

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It might be pancreatitis

The pancreas is an organ in the left and middle part of the upper abdomen which makes hormones and digestive enzymes to help break down food. The pancreas helps us break down fats, proteins, and carbohydrates into smaller molecules that can be absorbed by the body. It also secretes insulin to help sugar get into the cells for energy. When the pancreas becomes irritated, this is called “pancreatitis.” (more…)

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Feeling irritable from your IBS?

  What is irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)? Irritable bowel syndrome is something we frequently treat here in GI, and is estimated to affect between 25-45 million people in the US. Of those who suffer from IBS, about 2 out of 3 are female.  Irritable bowel syndrome is a chronic functional disorder of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract that can cause various symptoms, but is predominantly characterized by abdominal pain or discomfort and alteration in bowel habits. (more…)

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Pancreatic Cancer

Pancreatic Cancer is certainly a newsworthy topic as it gets a lot of attention when it affects a common household name such as Alex Trebek, the long-time host of Jeopardy! (Other famous people who were unfortunate enough to have this diagnosis were Aretha Franklin, Steve Jobs, Patrick Swayze, Alan Rickman, Michael Landon, and others) Of course, even more devastating, would be anyone that you know personally – which most of us have. (more…)

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03.2019 COLON CANCER AWARENESS MONTH

Colon Cancer Screening

March is Colon Cancer Awareness month! Are you up-to-date on the latest statistics for colon cancer? Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in men and women combined and the fourth most commonly diagnosed cancer in the United States. Did you know there is a 90% survival rate when cancer is found and treated early? Yet, the current statistics report that 1 in 3 American adults are not screened as recommended! (more…)

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