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Gastroenterology

Fast assessment and treatment for digestive system concerns

The gastroenterology unit at BMI The Chiltern Hospital provides exceptional care for conditions relating to the gastrointestinal tract, using an integrated approach.

The fantastic diagnostic equipment available, coupled with our highly qualified team of consultant gastroenterologists, ensures a fast and accurate diagnosis of your condition, with no time wasted on waiting lists. Whether your consultation relates to a common condition, like IBS, or to something less common that may require full use of our state-of-the-art testing facilities, such as diseases of the pancreas, gallbladder or bile duct, you can rest assured that you are in the best hands to begin your recovery. 

As we identify and treat your condition, you will enjoy a peaceful and pleasant experience at BMI The Chiltern Hospital. Our outpatient facilities are modern and spacious, and patients who need endoscopy are offered a private room to recover. Alongside your speedy and complete recovery, we put your comfort and peace of mind at the forefront of everything we do during your time with us. 

A Consultant Gastroenterologist specialises in conditions relating to the gastrointestinal tract, including everything from the mouth to the bottom. There are a wide variety of symptoms and conditions that should prompt a consultation with a Gastroenterologist. Patients can be referred by GPs and Consultants from other specialities based on their symptoms, or sometimes if blood and tissue tests have shown something that would benefit from a Gastroenterologist review.

Common symptoms in this field include heartburn, difficulty swallowing, unexplained nausea and vomiting, indigestion, and unexplained rectal bleeding. When investigating these symptoms, Gastroenterologists will often request blood tests, such as a blood count or ESR/CRP test and faeces tests, to check for infection and disease. 

A commonly required and more in-depth test is endoscopy. There are two kinds of endoscopy, a diagnostic test that uses a tiny camera to look inside the body, associated with Gastroenterology. A gastroscopy is used when the Consultant needs to look down the throat into the gullet and small intestine. A colonoscopy is used to look at the large intestine and rectum. Typically both procedures are performed under sedation, with general anaesthetic rarely required, though they can be carried out without any sedation if a patient wishes.

Gastroenterological conditions include ulcers in the stomach, oesophagus and intestines, IBS, IBD such as Crohn's disease, bile duct disease, coeliac disease, liver disease and colonic polyps. Many of these conditions, such as ulcers, can be treated with medication, while others are managed with a mixture of medication and lifestyle and dietary changes, for example, IBS and coeliac disease. Some conditions, such as liver disease, may lead to surgical intervention depending on their severity.

In cases involving gastrointestinal cancers, such as the stomach, bowel, and colon cancer, the gastroenterologist works closely with the oncology team and Consultant Surgeons to provide a complete cancer service. 

Booking a consultation that is prompt and convenient to your schedule is simple and easy with our enquiry team. As Gastroenterology is such a broad speciality, many of our Consultants have specific qualifications and expertise in the field's subspecialties. If you have not been referred to a particular Consultant already, our team will be happy to help you choose an appropriate specialist.

During your initial consultation, your Consultant will lead a discussion about your medical history and your symptoms, taking into account any triggers they have and how long you have been experiencing them. This may include a conversation about your diet and how the food you eat affects your symptoms. If necessary, your Gastroenterologist will conduct a physical examination of any relevant area before deciding on the next step of your diagnosis.

A usual next step is for your Consultant to request a series of blood tests and scans, which will be arranged to fit your schedule within the following two weeks. Other tests they may request include faeces tests, which is as simple as dropping off a sample for testing, and endoscopies, which are investigative procedures carried out by specialist nurse practitioners within the department.

If your Consultant requires the use of our imaging facilities, our advanced MRI, ultrasound and CT scanners are available to provide detailed scans of your abdomen and GI tract.

Whatever the next stage of your diagnosis is, your Consultant will outline it to you clearly at the end of your initial consultation and answer any questions you have.

When the results of your tests are available, you will be invited in to speak with your Consultant about your diagnosis and the treatment options available to you. Depending on your condition, several non-surgical solutions are available for your recovery, such as medication for stomach ulcers and dietary management for coeliac disease. Gastroenterological treatment will often take a holistic approach, including an awareness of lifestyle and dietary impact on health. 

While undertaking any test or procedure at BMI The Chiltern Hospital, you will be treated with care and consideration by our exceptional team. Depending on the purpose of your visit, you may be treated in our JAG accredited endoscopy unit, one of our state-of-the-art operating theatres, or simply in the consultation room. You will always find our facilities and team to be of the very highest standard. If your Consultant advises you to undertake a procedure or surgery, you will be sent a fixed price quote in writing, with no further hidden costs.

On the day of your procedure, you will be checked into a private room for your recovery. Before you leave, our team will ensure you are happy, healthy and ready to go home, usually on the same day for endoscopy. You might require a night or more in the hospital if your Gastroenterologist has referred you to a Surgeon for an operation.  

The many complexities and subspecialties within Gastroenterology can make diagnosis a complicated process if not handled by an expert and caring specialist. Your Consultant at BMI The Chiltern Hospital will lead on your care from start to finish, ensuring that diagnosis is achieved swiftly and that the treatment and management of your condition is delivered effectively, under their supervision. 

The first-class equipment available at BMI The Chiltern Hospital, coupled with some of the very best minds in this speciality, ensure that no stone is left unturned in finding the cause of your symptoms and treating them promptly. Our high-grade diagnostic facilities include MRI, CT and ultrasound scanners, as well as cutting edge blood and faeces testing technology. 

Whether it is the expertise of an Oncology Consultant, General Surgeon, or a Colorectal Surgeon, it is common for a Gastroenterologist to consult with specialists from other departments about a patient's care. With fantastic onsite departments in all these fields, our Consultants are best placed to seamlessly curate your care, using their close working relationships with colleagues across units. 

Speak with our friendly enquiry team today to book your initial consultation with an expert Gastroenterologist. 

Specialists offering Gastroenterology

Mr Arnold Goede

Consultant General Surgeon

MBChB, MS, FRCS (Gen Surg)

BMI The Chiltern Hospital 1 more BMI The Shelburne Hospital

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Dr Vicky Blackwell

Consultant Gastroenterologist

MBChB, MRCP, MSc

BMI The Shelburne Hospital 1 more BMI The Chiltern Hospital

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Dr Amitabh Naik

Consultant Gastroenterologist

MBBS, MRCP

BMI The Chiltern Hospital 3 more BMI Mount Alvernia Hospital BMI The Runnymede Hospital BMI The Shelburne Hospital

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Dr David Gorard

Consultant Physician & Gastroenterologist

MB BS MD FRCP

BMI The Chiltern Hospital 1 more BMI The Shelburne Hospital

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Dr Ravi Sekhar

Consultant Gastroenterologist

MBBS, FRCP

BMI The Chiltern Hospital

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