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What is gastroenterology?

Gastroenterology is a field of medicine specializing in the digestive system. Gastroenterology monitors functioning and treats illnesses related to the stomach, colon, rectum, esophagus, small intestine, bile ducts, liver, pancreas and gallbladder. Common conditions treated in gastroenterology are colitis, IBS, cancer, hepatitis and heartburn.  

Many healthcare providers work in gastroenterology, including physicians and nurses. Physicians undergo unique, extensive training to become gastroenterologists.

Why is gastroenterology important to healthcare?

Gastroenterology is important because it provides effective, comprehensive care to patients presenting with gastrointestinal issues. Procedures performed by gastroenterologists lead to fewer hospital days, more accurate detection and fewer complications. Gastroenterology also produces a lot of research to advance gastrointestinal endoscopic procedures.