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How to Determine When You Need to See A Gastroenterologist?

Doctor holding a checklist

In this blog post, you get to learn about who a Gastroenterologist is, when to see this type of specialist and what kinds of conditions they treat.

Ok, let’s get on with it then. 


A gastroenterologist is a physician who specializes in diseases of the digestive system, also called the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. Gastroenterologists are trained in the diagnosis and treatment of conditions that affect the oesophagus, stomach, small intestine, large intestine (colon), the liver, pancreas, gallbladder, and bile ducts. 

Gastroenterologists have a thorough understanding of how food moves through the digestive tract and the physical and chemical break down of food (digestion), including the absorption of nutrients and the removal of waste products. Gastroenterologists also focus on the digestive function of the liver.


a clock on the wall
Picture by Buenosia Carol

Normally, acute illnesses, cause stomach pain or other symptoms, that usually subsides in a short period of time. When this happens we seek the regular doctor for care.


However, what should you do if you have stomach pain that occurs frequently or lasts for long periods? 

You might have an underlying condition that affects your gastrointestinal system.

And at this stage, your doctor will recommend seeing a Gastroenterologist. Your regular doctor can provide you with care for minor, temporary stomach pain. However, you’ll need to see a Gastroenterologist for an effective treatment plan if you have chronic or severe stomach pain.

Common Gastrointestinal Symptoms

Gastrointestinal problems can cause a wide range of symptoms, such as any of the following:

  • Stomach pain or discomfort that ranges from mild to severe
  • Loose stool
  • Constipation
  • Gas and bloating


Gastroenterologists treat a number of conditions that affect the digestive tract, including:

  •   Inflammatory bowel syndrome (IBS)
  •   Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis
  •   Celiac disease
  •   Haemorrhoids
  •   Gastroesophageal reflux or heartburn
  •   Ulcers
  •   Pancreatitis
  •   Gallbladder disease
  •   Polyps
  •   Cancer

When you see a Gastroenterologist, you can undergo diagnostic testing to determine the cause of your symptoms. The kind of treatment you end up needing will depend on your diagnosis and the severity of your condition. Keep in mind that you might need to see a Gastroenterologist on a regular basis if you have a chronic condition that affects your gastrointestinal system.

P.S. If you need to see a Gastroenterologist for stomach pain, please contact GIDEC to make an appointment. We can provide you with diagnostic testing to find the cause of your stomach pain and discuss treatment options with you. GIDEC – Specialist you can trust.

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