Are you approaching age 50? Has your primary care physician referred you for a colonoscopy? If so, contact the gastroenterologists at Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada in both Las Vegas and Henderson, NV. Here, your team of gastroenterologists performs high-resolution colon examinations that are both comfortable and able to yield accurate results.
Why should you get a colonoscopy?
A colonoscopy yields clear images and real-time videos of the interior of the colon/large intestine. This simple screening test tells your doctor if you have, or at risk for, colon cancer, the second leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States, according to the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO).
Because colon-rectal cancer risk increases with age, colonoscopy screenings beginning at 50 are important, even life-saving. These tests reveal the presence of colon polyps, small benign growths that may become cancerous over time. In fact, all colon malignancies arise from polyps. This is why your gastroenterologists in Las Vegas and Henderson, NV, want to see, remove, and biopsy them.
The day before your test, your doctors here at Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada will ask you to complete a colon cleansing with fasting, laxatives, and clear liquids. When you arrive the next day, you will be given medication to relax your body, and depending on your particular protocol, light sedation or anesthesia, as well.
Next, the doctor uses a thin, lighted endoscope to view the entire length of your large intestine, starting with the anus and rectum. He'll take pictures throughout and tissue samples as needed. This examination takes about 30 minutes, and most patients feel drowsy or even sleep all the way through.
In the recovery room, your physician will review the results with you, and afterward, a friend or relative will drive you home to rest for the rest of the day.
Other uses for colonoscopy
Besides screening for cancer and polyps, a colonoscopy can reveal the causes of diarrhea, abdominal pain, and rectal bleeding. Conditions uncovered include:
- Irritable Bowel Disease
- Intestinal obstructions
Know your colon health
Colonoscopy can help you know all about it, and when it comes to colon cancer, this easy test could save your life. For more information about this and our other state of the art GI procedures, contact Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada. We are open Monday through Friday 8 am to 5 pm. Phone either one of our offices in Las Vegas or Henderson, NV, today by dialing (702) 483-4483.
Seeing your gastroenterologist every ten years for screenings could save your life.
Colorectal cancer is one of the leading causes of cancer-related death in both men and women in the US. While this form of cancer is highly curable when detected early on, the problem remains that most people don’t get routine colon cancer screenings. Colon cancer screenings are one of the most valuable and effective tools that our Las Vegas gastroenterologists have to be able to catch colorectal cancer early on. In fact, 60 percent of colorectal cancer deaths could be prevented with a simple screening.
Here’s what you should know about colon cancer screenings:
You should get your first colonoscopy at 50 years old
Since colon cancer is most often diagnosed between the ages of 50 to 75, these are the ages in which you should get routine colon cancer screenings. Your first colonoscopy should happen by your 50th birthday, and this goes for both men and women. If your test results come back normal, then you may not need another colonoscopy for 10 years.
You may need to get them sooner if you have risk factors
There are certain risk factors that can increase your chances of developing colorectal cancer. The biggest risk factors include:
- A family history of colorectal cancer
- A personal history of colorectal cancer or colon polyps
- Having an inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) such as ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease
Other risk factors include:
- Sedentary lifestyle
- Heavy drinking
- A high-fat diet
- Older age
By making simple lifestyle modifications, you can reduce your risk of colon cancer. Talk with your gastroenterologist today for help on implementing these changes.
Colonoscopies can also diagnose common gastrointestinal problems, too
Along with finding/removing colon polyps and diagnosing colorectal cancer during its early stages, a colonoscopy may also be prescribed by one of our Las Vegas intestinal doctors if you are dealing with certain symptoms such as abdominal pain, blood in the stool, unexpected weight loss, or rectal pain. Since a colonoscopy gives us the chance to examine the lining of the lower intestines, it also allows us to find ulcers, inflammation, bleeds, and tumors.
Interested? Give us a call
If you’ve just turned 50 years old, give yourself the gift of good health and schedule your colon cancer screening at our Las Vegas gastroenterology practice. Call Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada today by dialing (702) 483-4483.
Find out the symptoms of celiac disease and how to manage your symptoms.
By now, many people have heard of celiac disease; however, not many people understand what it is. While this condition affects the digestive tract it’s actually an autoimmune disorder. When a person consumes gluten not only does the body begin attacking the intestines but it also affects how the body absorbs nutrients. Find out more about the warning signs of this disorder, when to see a doctor, and how our Las Vegas, NV, gastroenterologists help patients manage their symptoms.
Signs and Symptoms of Celiac Disease
Here are the classic symptoms of celiac disease:
- Diarrhea or constipation (or both)
- Unexplained fatigue
- Weight loss
- Iron-deficiency anemia
- Itchy rash
If you are dealing with these symptoms, particularly after eating wheat products, then you should visit your Las Vegas gastrointestinal doctor to find out if you could have celiac disease. It’s important to distinguish between celiac disease and gluten sensitivity.
Those with gluten sensitivity may experience similar symptoms to celiac disease but they often aren’t as intense and it doesn’t cause the immune system to attack the intestinal tract like true celiac disease. Untreated celiac disease can also lead to a host of other complications including osteoporosis, other immune disorders and even cancer, so it’s important to see treatment right away if you suspect that you have celiac disease.
How is celiac disease treated?
While there is no cure for this autoimmune disorder the most effective gastroenterology treatment option is to maintain a strict gluten-free diet. Even those with non-celiac gluten sensitivity should also follow the same diet. This diet will allow the gut to heal, which will eliminate your symptoms and prevent future complications.
Your doctor may also recommend certain vitamins and supplements. After all, many people with celiac disease may also experience a deficiency in iron, calcium, zinc, magnesium, B12, and vitamin D. It’s also possible to develop a vitamin B deficiency if your gluten-free diet isn’t providing you with sufficient vitamin B supplementation. In this case, your gastroenterologist may prescribe a dietary supplement that you should take every day.
If you are dealing with the symptoms of celiac disease in Las Vegas it’s important that you see your doctor as soon as possible for a diagnosis. Call Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada today to schedule an appointment or ask any questions about gastroenterology.
An endoscopy is a diagnostic imaging test that allows the physician to examine and take pictures of the inside of an organ or specific area of the body. Your Las Vegas, NV, gastroenterologist may recommend an endoscopy if you are experiencing pain or symptoms like chronic or severe acid reflux. The Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada offers endoscopies and other imaging tests of the upper and lower digestive tract.
Endoscopy in Las Vegas, NV
Q: How does an endoscopy work?
A: An endoscopy is performed by inserting a small tube with a light and camera attached at the end (endoscope) into the upper or lower digestive tract to look for growths, lesions, or other problems that may be causing symptoms. You will receive a detailed list of instructions prior to the procedure in order to prepare, including dietary restrictions and information about medication.
Q: When is an endoscopy necessary?
A: Endoscopies are primarily used as a diagnostic tool. Your Las Vegas, NV, doctor will order one if you are experiencing symptoms of certain digestive issues like GERD, colitis, or blockages.
Q: Will I be awake during the procedure?
A: Sedation is provided to keep you comfortable and relaxed during the procedure, but you will remain awake.
Q: Will I have to take time off for the procedure?
A: Endoscopies are typically performed on an outpatient basis at Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada, but you will need someone to help you get home after the procedure until the sedation fully wears off. If your procedure is in the morning or during the work day, you should make arrangements to take the rest of the afternoon off.
Q: Is it painful?
A: You may experience some discomfort in the throat after the endoscope is removed, but sedation is provided to ensure that you will remain as comfortable as possible.
Q: How long is the recovery period?
A: After the procedure (10-15 minutes), you will recover at the doctor's office for approximately 30 minutes. Patients can typically eat again immediately after.
Find a Gastroenterologist in Las Vegas, NV
For more information about endoscopy and other digestive health screenings and treatments, contact Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada in Las Vegas, NV, by calling (702) 483-4483 to schedule an appointment with one of our doctors today.
This diagnostic procedure could shed some light on your gastrointestinal issues.
When you’re dealing with stomach pain, nausea and other symptoms wouldn’t it be lovely if your body could just tell you what’s going on? Unfortunately, this isn’t how life works but we can find out what’s going on within your gastrointestinal tract thanks to a helpful procedure known as an endoscopy. Our Las Vegas and Henderson, NV, gastroenterologists are here to explain when an endoscopy may be necessary for you.
What is an endoscopy?
An upper or lower endoscopy is a diagnostic procedure that is performed by our GI specialists to be able to get a more detailed visual of what is going on within the digestive tract. This minimally invasive, outpatient procedure is painless and performed right here in our office.
When is an endoscopy performed?
There are many cases in which an endoscopy can provide us with the insight we need to be able to figure out what’s going on with your digestive tract. An endoscopy can be used to:
- Pinpoint the cause of digestion-related symptoms (e.g. bleeding; abdominal pain)
- Determine the severity of your digestive problem
- Monitor preexisting gastrointestinal conditions
- To biopsy a specific area of the digestive tract
- To screen for cancer
- To remove polyps, treat an obstruction or to stop bleeding
An endoscopy is able to view the esophagus, stomach, and upper and lower intestines, and it provides a more accurate view of your digestive health than X-rays. It’s also better at discovering ulcers, inflammation or tumors.
What should I expect from this diagnostic procedure?
Before the endoscopy is performed an IV will be administered to provide you with sedation and pain relief. You will not receive general anesthesia because it’s a quick and minimally invasive procedure, but many people feel so relaxed during conscious sedation that they even fall asleep during their endoscopy.
Once the sedation has taken effect, we will gently insert a thin flexible tube (the endoscope) into the throat and slowly guide it through the esophagus and into the stomach and digestive tract. An upper endoscopy usually takes anywhere from 10 to 15 minutes; however, it could take longer if an area has to be biopsied or polyps have to be removed.
If you are living in Las Vegas and Henderson, NV, and dealing with gastrointestinal issues then it’s a good time to schedule a consultation with one of our gastroenterologists who can help you get to the bottom of your health issues. Call Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada today.
A colonoscopy procedure is an important and effective diagnostic and treatment tool that has many benefits and understanding it better can help you determine that it is the best option for you. Learn more about colonoscopy and why your doctor may recommend it with Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada in Las Vegas and Henderson, NV.
What is a colonoscopy?
Colonoscopy is a procedure which can serve as a screening for colon cancer, be used to investigate symptoms, or even take biopsies or remove issues like polyps. The procedure itself uses a long, thin, hollow tube with a camera attached to the end. The tube, called a colonoscope, is flexible and about the width of a finger. The camera allows your doctor to visually inspect your lower digestive tract and insert specialized instruments to perform treatments.
Why is colonoscopy recommended?
Your doctor may recommend colonoscopy if you are over the age of 50 as part of a preventative care routine. After 50, those with an average risk of colon cancer should have a colonoscopy once every 10 years. However, your doctor may also suggest colonoscopy in the case of:
- bloody stool
- bleeding from the rectum
- unexplained changes in bowel habits
- unexplained abdominal pain
- pus or mucus in the stool
If you think you could benefit from a colonoscopy, you should consult with your gastroenterologist to ensure that this is the best treatment for you.
Colonoscopy Treatments in Las Vegas and Henderson, NV
If your doctor recommends a colonoscopy, you will need to prepare by performing several steps prior to your treatment. Your doctor will prescribe a regimen of laxatives or enemas to cleanse your bowel and help prepare your body for your treatment. You will also need to fast for 24 hours before your colonoscopy.
For more information on colonoscopy, please contact your gastroenterologist at Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada in Las Vegas and Henderson, NV. Call (702) 483-4483 to schedule your appointment in Las Vegas or (702) 483-4483 to schedule your appointment in Henderson today!
Find out if the digestive issues you’ve been having could be due to celiac disease.
Gluten is a word we hear a lot when it comes to nutrition and diet. We see gluten-free bakeries and restaurants cropping up all over and becoming pretty mainstream. While gluten isn’t a problem for a lot of people, this protein found in foods such as breads, pastas and cereals could cause serious intestinal damage in someone with celiac disease. So what is celiac disease and how can you tell whether you have it? Our Henderson, NV, gastroenterologists are here to shed some light on this rather popular subject.
What is celiac disease?
Celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder that negatively impacts the digestive system when consuming foods that contain gluten. Gluten is found in barley, wheat and rye products such as many cereals, pastas and breads. Over time, consuming gluten can lead to damage to the lining of the intestines; fortunately, most symptoms and complications can be reversed once you begin a gluten-free diet.
What are the symptoms of celiac disease?
Celiac disease can manifest itself in a myriad of ways and symptoms can differ greatly from person to person. In fact, according to the Celiac Disease Foundation, there are over 200 symptoms that may occur as a result of celiac disease. Common symptoms include:
- Abdominal pain
- Chronic diarrhea
- Poor concentration and memory
- Reduced appetite
- Unexpected weight loss
- Depression, mood swings and irritability
If you or a family member is dealing with any of these symptoms it’s important that you turn to our Henderson, NV, gastrointestinal specialists to figure out what’s going on. Since these symptoms can also be indicative of other issues, it’s important that you get a proper diagnosis and so that we then determine the best treatment plan for you.
How is celiac disease treated?
The best and most effective treatment for celiac disease is to switch to a strictly gluten-free diet. This means nixing gluten from your diet completely. Since we know making the transition can be challenging, particularly for children and teens, we can work with you to create a dietary plan that will help you find suitable and safe alternatives for foods that contain gluten.
Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada offers two convenient locations in Henderson, NV, and Las Vegas. If you are concerned that you or your child may have celiac disease then it’s important to seek a professional evaluation as soon as possible.
What your gastroenterologists in Las Vegas want you to know about GERD
You’ve probably heard more than a few people complain about heartburn, because heartburn is a common problem. The truth is continual heartburn could be a sign of something more serious. It could be a sign of gastroesophageal reflux disease, also known as GERD. So what is gastroesophageal reflux disease? Your gastroenterologists at Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada in Las Vegas, NV want to help answer that question.
GERD is a condition caused by the sphincter muscle between your stomach and esophagus not working correctly. Normally, this sphincter muscle closes, keeping stomach acid from traveling up your esophagus. In cases of gastroesophageal reflux disease, the sphincter muscle only partially closes, allowing stomach acid to invade your esophagus.
There are some easily identifiable signs and symptoms of GERD, including:
- Frequent pain in your throat
- A frequent sour taste in your mouth
- Frequent bad breath
- Chronic wheezing and coughing
- Tooth sensitivity from eroding tooth enamel
- Chest pain, nausea and vomiting
There are many changes you can make that will reduce the signs and symptoms of GERD. You can try to:
- Eat smaller meals
- Avoid smoking and other tobacco products
- Avoid eating before lying down or bedtime
- Reduce or eliminate acidic or spicy foods
- Take over-the-counter antacids
If you think you have gastroesophageal reflux disease, it’s best to seek out the help of your gastroenterologist because GERD can progress, causing extensive damage to your esophagus. For example, GERD can cause:
- Esophageal inflammation, resulting in swelling of your esophagus and problems swallowing
- Esophageal ulcers, resulting in problems swallowing, nausea and pain in your chest
- Esophageal narrowing and scarring, leading to problems swallowing
Don’t ignore the signs and symptoms of GERD, especially when gastroesophageal reflux disease can be effectively treated by your gastroenterologists at Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada. Don’t wait for GERD to get worse. Instead, call your gastroenterologists at Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada in Las Vegas, NV today!
An upper endoscopy is a simple, yet state-of-the-art gastrointestinal procedure. Why would you need this test? The reasons are many, making endoscopy one of the most versatile and reliable diagnostic tools your gastroenterology doctor in Henderson delivers. According to the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta, almost 7 million American adults undergo an endoscopy annually, helping doctors uncover GI disease and to treat it properly. At Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada, count on expert, compassionate care from our team of board-certified gastroenterologists during upper endoscopy or other GI procedures you may need.
What happens during an upper endoscopy?
During an upper endoscopy, you will be lightly sedated and lie on one side. Your physician will anesthetize the back of your throat and introduce a thin, lighted tube which has a miniature video camera. As the tube travels down your esophagus to your stomach and duodenum (upper intestine), your doctor views real-time color images on a monitor. He is able to see areas of bleeding, growths, malformations, hernias and other irregularities.
In addition, your Henderson gastroenterologist may take small tissue samples for biopsy (analysis for cancer and Heliobacter pylori), perform tissue ablation to destroy areas of irregularity (such as Barrett's Esophagus) or bleeding or to stretch strictures that narrow the GI tract.
The entire procedure takes about 30 minutes, and the vast majority of patients tolerate it very well. Because of the sedation, a responsible adult must drive you home afterward. At home, you can eat and resume light activity right away, but you may feel a bit bloated because of the air introduced by the endoscope during the procedure.
Why would you need an upper endoscopy?
When patients present with symptoms of unexplained pain, digestive issues, nausea, vomiting or bleeding, the GI doctor may order an upper endoscopy. While X-rays render a good visualization of structures in the GI tract, irregularities such as polyps, bleeding and inflammation are detected better with endoscopy, says the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy. Plus, the test is a minimally invasive, comfortable way to take biopsies for cellular analysis.
At Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada, our professional staff knows the literal ins and outs of upper endoscopy. Your procedure will be safe, accurate and comfortable. If your primary care physician wants you to have an upper endoscopy, contact our office staff at (702) 483-4483. We have locations in both Henderson and Las Vegas, NV.
Find out what might be causing this frustrating and uncomfortable issue.
When diarrhea shows up, it’s often during the worst of times: while in the middle of a meeting, at the gym or on a date. Diarrhea certainly won’t wait for the most opportune time. So if you find yourself spending more time than usual in the bathroom you may be wondering what’s going on. Here are some common causes of diarrhea and when you should visit one of our Henderson and Las Vegas gastroenterologists for a proper diagnosis.
What’s going on with your GI tract? Well, it might just be:
- Bacterial infections (E. coli; salmonella)
- Food poisoning
- Lactose intolerance and other kinds of food allergies (e.g. celiac disease)
- Medications (e.g. blood pressure medication)
- Crohn’s disease
- Colon polyps
- Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
- Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
- Hyperthyroidism (an overactive thyroid)
There are so many different issues, from minor and self-limiting to chronic conditions, that could be causing your symptoms. There are some measures you can take to help ease your symptoms such as:
- Stay hydrated (drinking water is particularly important when you have diarrhea)
- Stay away from foods that are acidic and spicy (stick to foods that are a bit blander for the time being and slowly reincorporate other foods back into your diet)
- Make sure to always wash your hands
In most cases, diarrhea will clear up on its own. Of course, you may also be wondering when you should turn to one of our Henderson and Las Vegas GI doctors for a proper diagnosis and treatment. If you haven’t noticed relief from your diarrhea within two day, it’s best to give us a call. We can determine whether you should come into our office for care. You should also give us a call immediately if:
- You have a fever that’s over 101.3 degrees F
- You have black stools
- There is blood in the stool
- You are experiencing signs of dehydration
- You also have sudden or several abdominal pain
Don’t let gastrointestinal upset affect your life. If you are dealing with symptoms that you just can’t seem to tackle on your own, then call Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada in Henderson and Las Vegas. We know how to prevent, manage and treat a full spectrum of GI problems.
Common Stomach Problems and How We Can Help
Digestive problems can happen to anyone and gastroenterologists are medical professionals who specialize in diagnosing and treating stomach issues. Dr. Gary Chen is one of the specialists in gastroenterology at the Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada, in Las Vegas, NV. Here are some of the common gastric problems he can help you with.
The most common causes of constipation include insufficient fiber in your diet, not drinking enough water, resisting the urge to go to the bathroom, not getting enough exercise, and taking certain medications. To avoid constipation and the discomfort it causes, the first thing to do is change your diet by gradually adding more fiber. You should also increase the amount of fruit and vegetables in your diet, and bulk up on beans. Additionally, it helps to drink around eight 8-ounce glasses of water each day.
Gas and Bloating
Intestinal gas and abdominal bloating affect just about everyone at some time or other. Both are normal conditions that occur as your body converts food into energy. If, however, you are experiencing them often and they are making you feel uncomfortable or embarrassed, you can make a few lifestyle changes to help reduce their effects. These changes include eating more slowly to avoid swallowing as much air, exercising regularly, avoiding carbonated beverages, avoiding chewing gum, quitting smoking, and checking your dentures.
Acid reflux, also known as gastroesophageal reflux, occurs when acid from the stomach flows backward into the esophagus – the tube connecting the stomach and throat. When this happens, you may feel a burning sensation in your chest and throat. You may also notice a taste of regurgitated food. In some cases, acid reflux may develop into a more severe condition known as gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). If you suffer from occasional bouts of acid reflux, you can make some lifestyle changes to alleviate the condition. These include maintaining a healthy weight, avoiding trigger foods, and eating low-fat, high-protein meals.
Gastroenteritis, also known as stomach flu, is caused by a viral infection and is the second most common illness in the U.S. It is spread through contaminated food and water and passed on by contact with someone who is infected. The best way to avoid gastroenteritis is by washing your hands frequently. The most common symptoms of this condition are vomiting and diarrhea, so it’s important to drink plenty of water. After you recover from gastroenteritis, taking a probiotic supplement can help to rebalance the beneficial microbacteria throughout your GI tract and also to strengthen your immune system.
If you need a gastroenterologist in Las Vegas, call Dr. Chen at 702-483-4483.
Cancer is a scary subject. However, knowing the causes linked to cancer and how to prevent this disease can help you maintain your health and understand the importance behind things like nutrition, exercise and staying active. Learn more about preventing stomach cancer with your gastroenterologists at Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada in Las Vegas, NV.
Do I have stomach cancer?
The best way to determine if you have stomach cancer is to consult with your gastroenterologist for routine screenings. At the early stages, there may not be any symptoms. There are some symptoms indicative of this condition, including:
- sudden weight loss
- abdominal pain
- vomiting, with or without blood
- a feeling of fullness in the abdomen
- abdominal swelling
If you feel as though you exhibit the symptoms of stomach cancer, you should consult with your gastroenterologist as soon as possible. Diagnosing cancer in its earliest stages is crucial to successful treatment.
Stomach Cancer Treatments
After receiving a stomach cancer diagnosis, your treatment plan will depend on you and your condition, the stage, and location of the cancer. Common treatments for stomach cancer include surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy. Finding support during your treatment is often helpful in dealing with the hardships of the treatment process. Check with your doctor to see if there are hospital or clinic recommended support groups in your area.
Stomach Cancer Prevention in Las Vegas, NV
Stomach cancer prevention is centered around avoiding the risk factors associated with stomach cancer. Some common risks factors for stomach cancer include:
- lack of fruits and vegetables in your diet
- a diet with too much sodium
- lack of exercise
- certain medical and genetic conditions
Stopping smoking, losing weight and eating a healthy diet can all contribute to preventing stomach cancer.
For more information on preventing stomach cancer, please contact your gastroenterologists at Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada in Las Vegas, NV. Call (702) 483-4483 to schedule your appointment today!
Endoscopic ultrasound, or EUS, is a modern imaging technique that visualizes organs such as the pancreas, gall bladder, liver and more. Used by your team at Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada in Las Vegas and Henderson, this reliable day surgery helps diagnose and treat several GI disorders. Here are the details you need to know.
What is an endoscopic ultrasound?
Performed at our state of the art endoscopic center in Las Vegas, endoscopic ultrasound allows your gastroenterologist to see your digestive tract and organs such as the pancreas and gall bladder. Additionally, the doctor obtains images of hard-to-see structures such as lymph nodes and blood vessels.
When is this procedure used?
EUS helps doctors further explore lumps and other abnormalities previously viewed with other diagnostic procedures. It also allows for fine-needle aspiration, a method of obtaining tissue samples for biopsy and other kinds of analysis. Endoscopic ultrasound helps stage cancer of the GI tract and lungs as well.
Inform your doctor at Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada of your routine medications, including blood thinners such as aspirin or coumadin, and if you are allergic to shellfish or iodine.
Preparation involves pre-procedure fasting. The day of the procedure, you'll be given IV sedation. The doctor then uses a thin, flexible tube inserted in the mouth and down the throat to advance a camera and ultrasound instrument.
During the 30 to 90 minute procedure, your GI doctor views real-time photos on a television monitor and views sound wave images on a separate television set. Afterward, you'll rest in the recovery room, discuss results with your doctor, and go home with a responsible adult friend or relative. You may return to your usual routine the next day because EUS is usually well-tolerated by the majority of patients.
Contact us for additional information
At Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada, our nine board-certified gastroenterologists are experts in their field and ready to help you. We have two convenient offices: one in Henderson and the other in Las Vegas. Call us to know more about our endoscopy center and on EUS. Phone us weekdays at (702) 483-4483.
Find out why hemorrhoids happen and what you can do to treat this uncomfortable problem.
Okay, so talking about hemorrhoids might be a little embarrassing to you but it’s a very common gastroenterology problem that our Las Vegas, NV, gastroenterologists can treat. So, what are hemorrhoids exactly? They are swollen veins in the anus or rectum. If you have hemorrhoids this problem may be accompanied by pain, itching, or rectal bleeding.
What causes hemorrhoids?
Anything that puts pressure on the rectum or anus can lead to hemorrhoids. This means that if you find yourself straining to have a bowel movement or if you are constipated you may be prone to this problem. Women who are pregnant, as well as people who are overweight or lead a sedentary lifestyle, are also more likely to develop hemorrhoids.
How do you treat hemorrhoids?
Hemorrhoids may often go away by themselves without treatment. Of course, you may choose to pick up an over-the-counter hemorrhoid cream or ointment from your local pharmacy. This ointment will numb the area, reduce swelling, and even temporarily alleviate itching. These medications are only designed to provide relief; they will not cure hemorrhoids (they will go away with time).
Of course, it is common for those who deal with hemorrhoids to experience flare-ups. It’s important to treat bowel issues such as constipation as soon as possible, as well as maintain a healthy weight and get regular exercise. If you find that you are dealing with constipation, make sure that you are getting enough water and fiber in your diet. Another way to alleviate the discomfort of hemorrhoids is by sitting in a warm bath (also known as a sitz bath).
If over-the-counter treatments and at-home care aren’t effective in treating your hemorrhoids then it’s time to see a GI doctor in Las Vegas who can determine the best approach to treating this issue. In some cases, we may need to perform a minor procedure to remove or shrink the hemorrhoids. This procedure can be performed right here in our clinic under local anesthesia. Tubal ligation, laser therapy, and traditional surgery are all ways to treat persistent or severe hemorrhoids.
Are you dealing with painful hemorrhoids or other symptoms that have you concerned? If so, don’t hesitate to call Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada to schedule a consultation with one of our gastroenterologists or ask any questions. We have offices in Las Vegas and Henderson, NV.
Do you need a colonoscopy? This procedure, performed by the gastroenterologists here at Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada in Henderson and Las Vegas, NV, provides valuable information on your digestive health and help you avoid the potentially deadly effects of colon cancer.
When a colonoscopy can be helpful
Your Henderson or Las Vegas gastroenterologist may recommend a colonoscopy if:
- You turned 45 recently: Your risk of developing colon cancer increases as you grow older. Since colon cancer doesn't usually produce any symptoms until it's fairly advanced, it's important to diagnose it in its earliest, most treatable stages—a goal that can be accomplished by with the help of colonoscopies. If your colonoscopy doesn't reveal any issues, you won't need to schedule another procedure for 10 years in most cases.
- You had a pre-cancerous or cancerous polyp or lesion in the past: Colonoscopies may be recommended more frequently if you've had cancer or your gastroenterologist has removed a polyp with pre-cancerous cells in the past.
- You have digestive issues: Colonoscopies are very helpful in narrowing down the cause of a variety of symptoms, including rectal bleeding, chronic constipation/diarrhea, abdominal pain, bowel movement changes, or unexplained weight loss. Some issues, such as bleeding blood vessels, can even be treated during a colonoscopy.
What happens during a colonoscopy?
You'll need to take laxatives to clean out your intestines before you arrive for your colonoscopy. Although the prep process isn't fun, it is essential. After all, without it, your gastroenterologist won't have a clear view of the lining of your intestines.
During your colonoscopy, your doctor inserts a thin, lighted scope into your anus and passes it through your large intestine and into the upper part of your small intestine. The scope contains a tiny camera that transmits digital images to a monitor that your gastroenterologist views during the procedure. Your doctor examines every inch of your intestines for polyps, lesions, or other signs of trouble.
Any polyps discovered during the colonoscopy are removed and sent to a laboratory for analysis. The laboratory will determine if your polyps are non-cancerous, pre-cancerous or cancerous.
Concerned? Give us a call
Could you benefit from a colonoscopy? Call your gastroenterologists at Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada at (702) 483-4483 today to schedule an appointment at one of our offices in either Henderson or Las Vegas, NV.
Though it could mean a variety of things, abdominal pain is a common problem which affects many people. However, you may not know when you should consult with your gastroenterologist about your abdominal pain, what could cause this uncomfortable symptom, and how your doctor can help. Find out more about abdominal pain and its causes with Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada with locations in Las Vegas and Henderson, NV.
What causes abdominal pain?
Abdominal pain occurs in many situations. One of the most common causes of abdominal pain is irritable bowel syndrome, often referred to as IBS. This condition causes the contraction of abdominal muscles and sensitivity to what are normally normal occurrences. Those who experience abdominal pain may also experience constipation, diarrhea, bloating, or other uncomfortable symptoms. Abdominal pain may also come from organ inflammation like colitis or lack of blood flow to an organ.
How can my gastroenterologist help my abdominal pain?
Your gastroenterologist will begin with a physical examination to assess your symptoms and gather your medical and family history. Your doctor will also talk to you about your lifestyle choices and diet. Various tests like blood tests or stool tests can help your doctor further investigate your symptoms. Your doctor may also suggest testing such as colonoscopy to visually inspect your digestive tract.
Abdominal Pain Treatments in Las Vegas and Henderson, NV
Treating abdominal pain varies from patient to patient and depend on the condition, its severity, and a number of other factors. Some treatment plans may begin with simple changes to your lifestyle such as eating different foods while others may require medications or even surgery. Consulting with your gastroenterologist is the best way to determine the cause of your abdominal pain and the best course of treatment for you.
For more information on abdominal pain, please contact Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada with locations in Las Vegas and Henderson, NV. Call (702) 483-4483 to schedule your appointment at either the Las Vegas office or the Henderson office today!
Abdominal pain is an issue for almost everyone at one point or another. It can range from upper to lower, mild to severe, and can be difficult to pinpoint the cause behind it. Your abdomen makes up a large area of your body and contains many different organs. Therefore, the root of your abdominal pain could be any number of things, most of which can be easily identified and treated by the Las Vegas and Henderson gastroenterology team at Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada. Below, our doctors have listed a few of the ways abdominal pain can present itself, and how to know if it's an emergency.
What are some causes of abdominal pain?
The good news is that most causes of abdominal pain aren't serious. One of the most common reasons is GERD, or gastroesophageal reflux disease, which is produced by the contents of the stomach being pushed back into the esophagus. The symptoms include heartburn, sore throat, and an acidic taste in your mouth. A recurrent stomachache that is temporarily relieved by eating could indicate an ulcer somewhere in the stomach or upper intestinal area. Irritable bowel syndrome can also indicate a number of problems within the digestive tract, including abdominal pain. Your Las Vegas and Henderson gastroenterologists can examine and diagnose these disorders.
When is abdominal pain considered an emergency?
There are certain symptoms associated with abdominal pain that could indicate an emergency. These include:
- Sharp or severe pain that comes on suddenly
- Pain that is higher in the chest, neck, or shoulder areas and includes shortness of breath
- Vomiting blood
- A distended (bloated) abdomen that is tender to the touch
- The whites of the eyes or skin turning yellow
All of these symptoms should be evaluated at your local emergency room immediately. Follow-up with your Las Vegas and Henderson gastroenterologist is essential.
If you've been dealing with abdominal pain for longer than a few days, contact the Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada in Las Vegas to make an appointment with one of our gastroenterologists today! For our Las Vegas office, call (702) 483-4483. To reach the Henderson office, call 702-483-4483.
Dealing with diarrhea? Visit our gastroenterologists to find out what might be causing it.
While we might not like talking about it, all of us will deal with diarrhea at some point during our lifetime. Of course, it’s important to be able to recognize when it will go away on its own or when you’ll need to visit one of our Las Vegas gastroenterologists for additional treatment.
What could be causing my diarrhea?
There are many conditions, viruses, or situations that can lead to a bout of diarrhea. Common causes include,
- Viral infections
- Bacterial infections (e.g. salmonella; E. coli)
- An intestinal disorder
- Food allergies or food intolerance
- Gallbladder issues
- Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
- Certain medications
Some of these problems cause only acute bouts, which will go away over time; however, there are other issues such as an inflammatory bowel disease that could lead to chronic or severe diarrhea.
What are the symptoms?
Along with diarrhea, you may experience other symptoms, as well. Sometimes these other symptoms can clue you in as to what might be causing your diarrhea. Other symptoms include,
- Abdominal pain or discomfort
- Nausea or vomiting
- Blood in the stool
When should I see a doctor?
Many times, diarrhea will just go away on its own without ever needing medical attention. Of course, it’s also important to know when you will need to turn to one of our Las Vegas GI doctors for treatment. You should schedule an appointment with us if,
- Your diarrhea is severe
- You are experiencing signs of dehydration
- Your diarrhea lasts more than 2 days or gets worse
- You have severe abdominal or rectal pain
- You develop sores in the mouth
- Your diarrhea is bloody or black
- You have a fever over 102 degrees F
- You are unexpectedly and suddenly losing weight
Don’t ignore these symptoms. It’s better to play it safe and to visit a specialist who will be able to figure out what’s going on and create a treatment plan that will get your bowel health back on track.
Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada is here to help you address any and all of your gastrointestinal issues. If you are having issues with diarrhea or changes in your bowel habits, then call our Las Vegas office today to schedule an evaluation: (702) 483-4483
A colonoscopy is a medical procedure that allows your gastroenterologist to examine the lining of the colon for signs of cancer, polyps and other gastrointestinal problems. Healthy adults without any family history of colon cancer should schedule a colonoscopy around age 50. Adults with certain medical conditions or a family history of colon cancer may need to have a colonoscopy sooner than that. The gastroenterology experts at Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada, in Las Vegas and Henderson, NV, can advise you when to schedule your first colonoscopy.
The Colonoscopy Procedure
An instrument called a colonoscope is used to perform the colonoscopy procedure. The colonoscope is a thin, flexible tube with a small video camera on the end. The gastroenterologist gently inserts the colonoscope into the colon through the anus. As the colonoscope is moved up along the colon, the video camera allows the gastroenterologist to examine the colon’s interior and look for suspicious areas. If polyps or other suspicious growths are observed, the colonoscope can be used to remove polyps and extract samples for biopsy.
Who Needs a Colonoscopy?
As mentioned, all healthy adults should have a colonoscopy beginning at age 50. Adult patients of all ages who have chronic gastrointestinal problems due to conditions such as ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease can undergo several colonoscopies at different ages, beginning as early as the twenties. Your Las Vegas and Henderson gastroenterologists at the Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada can tell you if you need a colonoscopy younger than age 50.
For healthy adults approaching 50 years of age, it is important to schedule your first colonoscopy soon. For adults with a personal or family history of gastrointestinal problems, including colon cancer, be sure to discuss with the doctor when a colonoscopy should be performed. To schedule an appointment with the Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada and your Las Vegas and Henderson, NV Gastroenterologists, call (702) 483-4483.
Find out whether your abdominal distress might mean that it’s time to schedule an appointment with us.
There are so many reasons why you could be dealing with abdominal discomfort. Perhaps it was something you ate, or maybe you find that your stomach gets upset whenever you are stressed. While you may know what’s to blame, this isn’t always the case. Here are some symptoms and scenarios that warrant a trip to one of our Henderson and Las Vegas, NV, gastroenterologists:
- If you have severe abdominal pain
- If your abdominal pain continues to get worse or lasts more than six hours
- If the pain is so bad that it prevents you from eating
- If you are also vomiting
- If you are pregnant and experiencing abdominal pain
- Pain that occurs after eating
- Pain that gets worse when moving around
- Pain that is so bad that it wakes you up at night
- Pain accompanied by vaginal bleeding
- Pain accompanied by the inability to pass gas, have a bowel movement or urinate
- Pain that is on your lower right portion of the abdomen
- Pain along with a fever over 101 degrees F
If in doubt, you should always call one of our Henderson and Las Vegas GI doctors to see whether your symptoms warrant a visit to our office.
What could be causing my abdominal pain?
This is a great question and one that’s nearly impossible to answer without first examining you and discussing your symptoms. Where the pain is located is a great indicator of what could be going on. Here are some of the common diseases and problems based on the location of your abdominal pain:
- If you have upper abdominal pain it could be due to stomach ulcers, gastritis or pancreatitis.
- If the pain is concentrated in the upper right side this could be due to problems with your liver or gallbladder.
- If pain is more on the upper left side then you may be dealing with an enlarged spleen.
When it comes to lower abdominal pain this can be particularly tricky. Common issues include ovarian cysts, ovarian inflammation or torsion, appendicitis, uterine diseases, urinary tract infection or uterine fibroids.
If you are experiencing any of the issues above the sooner you seek treatment the sooner you will experience the relief you need. Call Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada in Henderson and Las Vegas today.
What your gastroenterologists in Las Vegas want you to know
Having an endoscopy and colonoscopy is the first step in detecting serious diseases, some of which can be fatal, such as colon cancer. The American Cancer Society estimates over 95,000 cases of colon cancer will be diagnosed in 2016, with over 49,000 people dying from it. In fact, colon cancer is the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths. Your gastroenterologists at Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada in Las Vegas want to share the facts about endoscopies and colonoscopies.
An endoscopy uses a thin flexible tube with a camera attached. The tube is inserted through your mouth and slowly lowered to view your esophagus, stomach and small intestine. Endoscopies are a vital tool to detect:
- Esophageal cancer
- Barrett's esophagus, a precancerous change in the esophagus
- Stomach cancer
- H. pylori infection of the stomach
- Hiatal hernia
A colonoscopy is similar to an endoscopy, and often the two procedures are done together under anesthesia. A colonoscopy examines the lower half of your digestive system, your large intestine. A colonoscopy is performed to detect:
- Colorectal cancer
- Precancerous tumors or polyps
- Inflammatory bowel disease such as ulcerative colitis or Crohn's disease
You may also need a colonoscopy if you experience these symptoms:
- Rectal bleeding
- Changes in bowel habits or appearance in stool
- Chronic diarrhea
- Chronic abdominal pain
A colonoscopy is recommended if you are 50 years older, just as a routine screening for colon cancer. It is a simple procedure that takes 45 minutes, but you should plan on staying 2 to 3 hours because of the anesthesia. You should also have someone with you to drive you home.
An endoscopy and colonoscopy are an important step in managing your health, especially if you are over 50, or suffering from digestive or intestinal issues. An endoscopy and colonoscopy can detect diseases early, so your physician can treat you early to provide a better outcome. Early detection and treatment can save your life!
To find out more about endoscopy and colonoscopy benefits, call your gastroenterologists at Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada in Las Vegas. Protect your health by calling today!
Colon cancer, or colorectal cancer, is a cancer that develops in the large intestine (colon) or the rectum. Colon Cancer screenings have one goal: to prevent deaths from colon cancer. These tests can help to identify cancers at an early and possibly a treatable stage.
All adults over the age of 50 should undergo a colon cancer screening. There are numerous tests that are currently available, and each has its advantages and disadvantages. The test that is right for you depends upon your preferences and your disk of developing colon cancer.
Colorectal cancers usually develop from a precancerous polyp. Polyps are growths that appear from the lining of the colon. They are visible when the bowel is examined by endoscopy (colonoscopy or sigmoidoscopy). The colon cancer-screening test works by detecting polyps or early stage cancers followed by removal of the malformation. Regular screenings for removing polyps can reduce the risk of developing colon cancer by up to 90 percent through colonoscopy.
It is important to know the risk factors for colon cancer. Several characteristics increase the risk of colorectal cancer. They include:
- Family History of Colorectal Cancer – If an immediate family member has had colorectal cancer, your chance increases.
- Prior Colorectal Cancer of Polyps – Patients who previously had colorectal cancer have an increased risk of developing a new colorectal cancer. Especially those who had the cancer before the age of 60.
- Increasing Age – The average person has a 5 percent change of developing colon cancer, but 90 percent of these cancers occur in patients older than 50 years of age.
- Lifestyle Factors – There are several habits that can be broke to decrease the risk of developing colon cancer. These bad habits include: A diet high in fat and red meat and low in fiber, an inactive lifestyle, cigarette smoking, alcohol use, and obesity.
Depending on your risk factors, there are many different types of screening tests that can be used for colorectal cancer screenings.
- Colonoscopy – allows a physician to see the lining of the rectum and the entire colon.
- Sigmoidoscopy – allows a physician to directly view the lining of the rectum and the lower part of the colon.
- CT Colonography – a test that uses a CT scanner to take images of the entire bowel.
- Stool Tests – colorectic cancers often release microscopic amounts of blood and abnormal DNA into the stool. Stool tests can reveal blood or irregular DNA makers.
- Fecal Occult Blood Test and Sigmoidoscopy – a combined screening with a fecal occult blood test and sigmoidoscopy. This screening strategy may be more effective than either test done alone.
If your family has a history of colon cancer, or you are over the age of 50, it’s time to give us a call and stay ahead of the game.
Welcome to the Blog of Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada
Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada would like to welcome you to our blog. Here you will find informative and useful postings about gastroenterology and our practice.
At Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada we believe that educated patients are better prepared to make decisions regarding the health of their digestive system. Our blog was designed to provide you with the latest gastroenterology developments and valuable health advice from our dedicated team.
Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada hopes you find our blog to be a great resource for keeping up to date with proper digestive health care and treatments.
We welcome all comments and questions.
-- Comprehensive Digestive Institute of Nevada
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