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Your health is of primary concern. It’s important that you do everything you can to maintain it. The attention you pay to your health is probably what brought you to a search for a gastroenterologist near me (or in the context of this article, near you). You’re looking for more information, because making informed decisions about your health matters to you. You may have already been urged in the direction of a gastroenterologist by another doctor, or maybe you already understand you need a specialist in digestive disorders. Whatever the reason, you intend to make the right choice for your health.
A gastroenterologist is a highly trained doctor that specializes in the digestive system. A good gastroenterologist will have a thorough understanding of how the human body’s stomach, intestines, esophagus, and biliary system (liver, gallbladder, bile ducts, pancreas) work and will be able to effectively address any digestion-related concerns you have [i].
There are multiple reasons why you might have to conduct a search for a gastroenterologist near me. Any time you have a specific problem with your digestive system, your family doctor may refer you to a gastroenterologist. In this case, a gastroenterologist will better be able to assist you, as they will typically have a more specialized range of knowledge about subjects related to the digestive system than any other doctor. Nevertheless, you may want to look up the gastroenterologist your family doctor recommended and possibly come up with your own suggestions based on personal research.
Or maybe you have pressing worries about the health of your digestive system and want to consult a gastroenterologist as soon as possible, without seeing your family doctor and getting their opinion first.
There are a number of issues that a gastroenterologist can help you get to the bottom of. Minor digestive symptoms can be the result of a larger problem, so it’s important to talk to an expert when you feel uneasy about the state of your health or if your symptoms are beginning to impact your life in a negative way.
Any pain or discomfort that concerns you should be discussed with your doctor. A gastroenterologist will be able to help you pinpoint the cause of digestive and abdominal distress. Your gastroenterologist will review your symptoms, conduct tests, and inform you of treatment options if you need them. There are several conditions you could bring up and discuss with a gastroenterologist, from serious to common.
The thought of having cancer fills plenty of people with anxiety. A gastroenterologist can bring you peace of mind if you think you may have colon or gastrointestinal cancer, or they can diagnose you quickly and get you into treatment as soon as possible.
Bloody stool is often the symptom of a more serious health problem. A gastroenterologist knows what could be the cause of blood in stools. They will have the knowledge and equipment to perform tests. From there, they can inform you of your best course of action.
Stomach ulcers cause a lot of discomfort, from constant dull pain that holds your appetite back to frequent nausea that makes daily life unbearable. A gastroenterologist will know all the best ways to treat any ulcers you have and prevent new ones from occurring.
Jaundice, the yellowing of the skin and eyes, is the result of problems in the biliary system. Gastroenterologists know how to properly diagnose and manage disorders of the biliary system, which in turn will alleviate jaundice.
The liver is a complex organ that plays a key role in metabolizing foods. It’s important to take care of your liver and address any liver concerns you have. A gastroenterologist has an advanced knowledge of how the liver functions and can guide you along in treating any liver issues you may need to manage.
Irritable bowel syndrome (or IBS, for short) can lead to embarrassing situations and hold you back from fully enjoying your life. You may find yourself avoiding certain foods to prevent triggering the condition. You may end up limiting your time in public in case of an incident. A gastroenterologist will advise you on methods of controlling IBS.
Acid reflux may not be life-threatening, but the burning sensation of stomach acid washing up into the esophagus can cause a lot of distress, particularly if it happens more than a few times a week. Chronic acid reflux is something you can talk to a gastroenterologist about.
Hemorrhoids aren’t serious, but they’re known for being painful. They make sitting and relaxing difficult. There are ways to treat hemorrhoids at home and they often go away on their own, but if you’re extra anxious about the situation then a gastroenterologist will know how to ease your mind [ii].
Either you’re searching for a legitimate gastroenterologist near me because your family doctor recommended you do so or because you believe you need specific care with issues related to your digestive system. A search for a good gastroenterologist near me can feel daunting, but it need not be too bad.
If you feel you need specialized care for your digestive system, one of the first things you’re going to ask is how do I find a gastroenterologist near me? Completing a positive search for a gastroenterologist near me starts with examining the credentials of digestive system doctors in your area. Secondly, you may want to make sure the personality of your chosen gastroenterologist meshes well with yours, that they meet your emotional and psychological needs as well as the professional qualifications you’re expecting.
Your right gastroenterologist near me will have the proper combination of education, experience, and licensing. All doctors must be well-educated and experienced, and gastroenterologists are no exception. Before deciding to go with any doctor you find while searching for a gastroenterologist near me, you might want to ask to review their professional qualifications. Here’s what you should look for:
The right gastroenterologist near me will have…
A gastroenterologist needs a lot of education and training to qualify for the position, starting with earning a bachelor’s degree. A bachelor’s degree is a prerequisite for medical school. It doesn’t have to be a science-related degree, but that is ideal and preferable. Most doctors will have either taken a pre-med program or another science program as their undergraduate, or they will have at the very least taken a variety of science classes alongside classes for an unrelated or undeclared major.
Every professional on your list of gastroenterologist near me will have spent four years in medical school to gain their Doctor of Medicine (M.D.). Medical school exposes aspiring doctors to a series of courses necessary for their development as medical professionals, and also provides an avenue for hands-on experience that’s a crucial part of becoming a great gastroenterologist.
Every medical professional has to earn a license before they can practice medicine. They take a series of examinations to prove they are knowledgeable and qualified enough to work in the medical field. Every gastroenterologist that’s worthy of your consideration should have a license to practice medicine.
Doctors spend a number of years gaining experience in the medical field after graduating and obtaining a license. They do this by completing residency training and completing a fellowship. Together, a residency and fellowship equal five to six years of experience. A residency involves in-depth training in the human body and a fellowship involves patient care [iii].
A good gastroenterologist is one who is not only knowledgeable enough to help you solve your medical problems in a professional and effective manner, but is also a good enough person to support you emotionally through your worries and reassure you during difficult times you may end up facing with your health.
You’re best off choosing a gastroenterologist near me who is, as a person, compassionate and empathetic. This type of person will genuinely want to help you get yourself back to health and ease your fears. They will be able to deliver bad news in a warm, caring way and follow that up by doing everything they humanly can to make you better.
The right gastroenterologist for you will have the patience to listen to your concerns without making you feel judged and misunderstood. They’ll have the attention to detail necessary to accurately diagnose you. They’ll be passionate about their job and confident enough to believe they can make a positive difference in your life.
The personality of your chosen gastroenterologist near me is of equal importance as their professional qualifications. They should definitely be qualified to help you manage your health, but they also need to be a good personal fit for you.
You may not be comfortable choosing a male gastroenterologist, particularly if you’re female. Fortunately, there are plenty of well-trained female gastroenterologists who have the type of personality that would work well with yours. A female gastroenterologist will be as equally suitable as any male gastroenterologist. Before choosing one, you should check she’s got all the proper credentials. This includes an appropriate undergraduate education, a medical degree, a license, and plenty of experience. When you’re in her office, you should feel safe and supported. There will be no significant differences in how you select a female gastroenterologist near me when compared to choosing a male gastroenterologist.
In some instances, people may be looking for a pediatric gastroenterologist. Complications with the digestive system can happen at any age and may be experienced by your child. If this is the case, you’ll want to find a gastroenterologist who’s an expert at detecting, treating, and controlling digestive disorders in children. A pediatric gastroenterologist will need the same professional qualifications as any other gastroenterologist, but they will ideally have experience working with children. You might want to ask them for a detailed description of their background in pediatric patient care.
Because a pediatric gastroenterologist will be working with children – and in your case, with your child – it’s extremely important that they have the right personality. First and foremost, a pediatric gastroenterologist should be able to talk to children in a way that engages them. They should be extra patient, kind, and gentle. Children tend to be sensitive and require an even softer approach than what an adult would need.
Consulting a specialist may be exactly what you need to do. A gastroenterologist is more equipped than any other doctor to answer your questions about any digestive distress you may be experiencing. Gastroenterologists are experts on digestive concerns. They’ll know what to do if your medical issue specifically involves the digestive system, whatever your problem may be. You can visit a gastroenterologist for problems as serious as cancer or as minor as acid reflux. A good gastroenterologist will be happy to assist you regardless of the details.
There are bound to be a lot of great gastroenterologists in your area, but you should do your research and carefully analyze professional and personal credentials before making your final choice. The perfect gastroenterologist for you will be well-trained, experienced, and have the type of personality that suits your needs. Your health is on the line, so it’s important to make the best possible choice, whether you’re making that choice for yourself or your child.
[i] Healthcommunities.com Staff. (2008, Feb.). What Is a Gastroenterologist? Retrieved from http://www.healthcommunities.com/general-gi-symptoms/what-is-a-gastroenterologist.shtml
[ii] Healthline. (n.d.). Faces of Healthcare: What’s a Gastroenterologist? Retrieved from https://www.healthline.com/health/digestive-health/what-is-a-gastroenterologist#conditions
[iii] Study.com (n.d.). How to Become a Gastroenterologist: Education and Career Roadmap. Retrieved from https://study.com/articles/How_to_Become_a_Gastroenterologist_Education_and_Career_Roadmap.html