Gastroenterology And Hepatology

Pancreas, liver, gallbladder, esophagus, stomach, small intestine and colon

By Kai Wade, Director of Communications & Social MediaLast modified: January 12, 2012

Gastroenterology And Hepatology Defined

Gastroenterologists and hepatologists specialize in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of digestive disorders. Gastroenterology is a branch of medicine encompassed by digestive diseases.

The focus of gastroenterology includes the analysis and treatment of diseases involving the pancreas, liver, gallbladder, esophagus, stomach, small intestine and large intestine (colon).


Gastroenterology specialists examine patients for gastroesophageal reflux disease, GI cancer, pancreatic cancer, hepatitis, cirrhosis, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), colitis, Crohn's disease, and inflammatory bowel disease. Symptoms relevant to digestive problems include constipation, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, heartburn, rectal bleeding, weight loss, and severe pains in the abdominal region.


Hepatology is the medical specialty concentrating on the treatment of diseases, disorders, and conditions of the liver. Hepatology is often practiced in concurrence with gastroenterology. Hepatologists treat liver diseases such as hepatitis and cirrhosis.

Gastroenterology And Hepatology Treatments

One third of world population has been plague-ridden with the Hepatitis B virus at some point in their life. Hepatitis in linked to 80% of liver cancer patients. Caring for a patient undergoing a screening for colon cancer to the complex supervision of a patient awaiting liver transplantation, gastroenterology specialists and hepatologists introduce the following widespread treatments, procedures, and tests:

- Colonoscopy

- Colonic polypectomy

- Endoscopic Retrograde Cholangiopancreatography (ERCP)

- Endoscopic Ultrasound (EUS)

- Endoscopy (for control of gastrointestinal bleeding and esophageal dilation - including gastroscopy, upper endoscopy and endoscopic ultrasound)

- Esophageal Manometry, Flexible Sigmoidoscopy, Laser endoscopy

- Liver Biopsy

- Nutritional counseling

- Papillotomy with stent placement and

- Stone extraction

To learn more about the prevention and treatment of digestive disorders, contact a gastroenterologist near you.


What is Gastroenterology? It is the analysis or treatment of Gastroenterology is the study of the normal function and diseases of the esophagus, stomach, small intestine, colon and rectum, pancreas, gallbladder, bile ducts and liver. Gastroenterology deals with the function and disorders of the digestive system.


Hepatology is the branch of medicine that integrates the study of the liver, gallbladder, biliary tree, and pancreas as well as the management of the disorders that accompany them. Hepatology is an area of specialty within gastroenterology, with hepatologists specializing solely on the liver.

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