Our Gastroenterology Blog

Posts for category: Gastroenterology Conditions

By THE ENDOSCOPY CENTER OF WEST CENTRAL OHIO
January 29, 2021
Tags: Fecal Incontinence  

Most people do not like to admit that they are unable to hold stools in the body. This condition usually means that the urge to go to the bathroom comes at inopportune times, which can be messy and embarrassing. A visit with the doctor may put you in the right direction with what to do next. Gastrointestinal Associates serves the Lima, OH, area for all its digestive needs, including fecal incontinence.

What are some causes of fecal incontinence?

Some of the reasons for fecal incontinence include lack of exercise, vaginal delivery of a child, chronic diseases of the digestive tract, constipation, and hemorrhoids.

Some foods and habits to avoid if you have fecal incontinence are:

  • Fatty, greasy, and fried foods
  • Excessive alcohol intake
  • Overconsumption of caffeine
  • Artificial sweeteners, especially ones that end in “ol” like Xylitol
  • High FODMAP foods like apples and pears

Treating fecal incontinence

A good habit to develop is a food diary. This diary can be an old-fashioned notebook or something more technologically savvy; still, recording what you ate and how it made you feel shortly afterward goes a long way in determining which foods serve as personal triggers.

Other techniques include warm sitz baths to keep the area clean and soothing, as well as wearing adult protective pads in the underwear.

Exercises that help

Doctors recommend Kegel exercises for both men and women to strengthen the pelvic floor. To do Kegels, practice over the toilet. When you urinate, squeeze your muscles to stop yourself, and keep repeating this action until done relieving yourself. This exercise will tone the whole sacral area, including the anus.

Hip thrusts are another way to help tighten the muscles. Lie on the floor with your knees bent, pointing toward the ceiling. Push your hips up into the air as high as you go, and release after one count. Relax. Doing several of these a day can quickly strengthen your anus and rectum.

Need more information concerning fecal incontinence? Contact Gastrointestinal Associates in Lima, OH, at (419) 227-8209 for a consultation.

By THE ENDOSCOPY CENTER OF WEST CENTRAL OHIO
December 30, 2020
Tags: Hemorrhoids  

Hemorrhoids are a (literal) pain in the butt. They can be internal or external and defined as swollen, veiny bumps that form around the anus and lower rectum. Hemorrhoids often result from reasons you may not think about, such as advanced age, prolonged sitting periods, heavy lifting, and pregnancy. But they're commonly caused by diarrhea, constipation, or chronic strain while using the restroom. If you experience symptoms like blood in the stool, itching, or anal discomfort of any kind, visit our Lima, OH office to discuss treatment options. Our providers at The Endoscopy Center of West Central Ohio can help you take a comfortable seat right away.

Treating Your Hemorrhoids

Acute hemorrhoids are often treatable with at-home care. Changes in diet, such as eating more fiber and drinking more water, can have a positive effect. It's also helpful to soak in warm baths after every bowel movement. When these remedies aren't working, we encourage you to schedule a consultation in our Lima, OH office to determine what methods might work best. Non-invasive treatment may include medication or supplements, while severe cases may require surgery for removal. To reach a correct diagnosis, one of our physicians will perform a visual or internal inspection and examine the area for abnormalities. Developing healthy bowel habits, incorporating more exercise into your lifestyle, and elevating the legs regularly, may decrease your risk of developing hemorrhoids.

It's essential to know that these painful bumps aren't life-threatening. More than half of Americans develop hemorrhoids by the age of 50. Genetics, obesity, and irregular bowel habits may increase your risk. For more information about other conditions we treat and services provided by The Endoscopy Center of West Central Ohio, visit our website. Please call (419) 227-8209 for appointment scheduling with one of our many providers at our Lima, OH office.

By GASTROINTESTINAL ASSOCIATES, INC
October 08, 2020
Tags: Diverticulitis  

Treating Diverticulitis

Diverticulitis is an intestinal infection that is most common in older people. It is a condition that is often easily treatable. For more information on treatment contact the professionals at Gastro-Intestinal Associates in Lima, OH.

Diverticulitis

In more than half of Americans over 60 small sacs develop in their intestinal lining. Usually, in the large intestine. This condition is called diverticulosis.

Diverticulitis is when these sacs become inflamed and infected.

There is no known cause for it, although low fiber diets are a suspected culprit. This is because a lack of fiber can lead to constipation, which can strain the intestine walls.

Symptoms

Diverticulosis, without infection, often has no symptoms, it must be diagnosed by your doctor. Your Lima, OH, gastroenterologist can examine you for diverticulosis and diverticulitis.

It is done through an x-ray or ultrasound of the abdomen. A CT scan is not a common method for diagnosis, but when performed for other reasons, will spot the diverticula.

A blood test will be performed to check for an infection.

Common symptoms are tenderness in the left lower abdomen, as well as bloating, and nausea. Perhaps even fever and chills, as well as blood in your stool.

Contact your doctor if have these symptoms. It's important to treat diverticulitis early to avoid complications. Such as the narrowing of a part of the colon, a tear, bleeding, an abscess, or a fistula between the colon and another part of the body.

Treatment

If your case is mild your treatment may be a simple as rest, pain medicine, and a change of diet. One based on liquids for a time before returning to regular food. Although they'll probably suggest adding more fiber overall to your diet.

You may require antibiotics and a hospital stay for more severe diverticulitis.

If your symptoms don't respond to other treatments surgery may be needed.

Diverticulitis Treatment

Your doctors at Gastro-Intestinal Associates Ohio in Lima, OH, can help guide you to the best treatment for you. Call today at (419) 227-8209.

By GASTROINTESTINAL ASSOCIATES, INC
September 04, 2020
Tags: Acid Reflux  

Gastroesophageal reflux disease, also called GERD or acid reflux, is the chronic and frequent backflow of acid coming from the stomach up into the esophagus. This occurs when your lower esophageal sphincter, a ring of muscle that’s responsible for keeping acids in the stomach from flowing back up, fails to close correctly. When this happens, the acids will irritate your esophageal lining, which causes heartburn, among other bothersome symptoms.

Over time, acid reflux can result in complications and might aggravate underlying medical problems like asthma. This is why seeing your gastroenterologist here at Gastro Intestinal Associates in Lima, OH, for proper acid reflux treatment is crucial.

How Do I Know If I Have Acid Reflux?

Recurrent heartburn is among the most common warning sign of acid reflux. The discomfort, burning sensation, or pain usually manifests in the chest and occurs right after eating, which could persist for several hours. It might likewise worsen at night. But some individuals with acid reflux don’t experience heartburn. That being said, below are other acid reflux symptoms to look out for:

  • Nausea
  • Foul breath, recurrent laryngitis, hoarseness, chronic cough
  • Tooth enamel wear
  • Worsening or new symptoms of asthma or breathing issues
  • Issues with swallowing, choking, throat tightness, or a sensation of having a lump in your throat
  • Constant acid backflow but without pain or burning

If you experience any of these regularly, visit your gastroenterologist in Lima, OH, to determine if you have acid reflux. You should likewise visit your gastroenterologist if you use OTC medications more than twice a week for heartburn relief. Left unaddressed, acid reflux could lead to more complications like esophageal cancer and Barrett’s esophagus. Your risk of developing complications also increases the longer you leave your condition untreated.

How is Acid Reflux Treated?

Besides lifestyle modifications, acid reflux treatment also typically involves prescription and OTC meds and surgery. Medications can include a combination of the following:

  • Antacids for neutralizing stomach acids as fast as possible.
  • H2 blockers for minimizing acid production.
  • Proton pump inhibitors for blocking acid production. These are more potent than H2 blockers.
  • Pro-motility or prokinetic agents for helping the stomach empty faster as well as reduce pressure on the lower esophageal sphincter.

Surgical intervention might be an option when you can’t manage your symptoms with the treatments mentioned above, or if you’re experiencing long-term adverse effects from medications.

Speak to Us For More Questions, Advice, or Concerns About Acid Reflux

Set a meeting here at Gastro Intestinal Associates in Lima, OH, with one of our gastroenterologists by dialing (419) 227-8209.