A gastrointestinal specialist is someone who specializes in the gastrointestinal tract. The gastrointestinal tract involves a pathway that starts at the mouth and ends at the anus. The organs within the gastrointestinal tract are those that function mostly for digestion. The most common organs within the digestive system are the esophagus, stomach and intestines.
Ensuring that your GI tract is in good health is essential to your overall health. Most doctors will recommend that you see a GI specialist for a colonoscopy when you first turn 45, and get regular colonoscopies every 10 years thereafter. To learn more about why you should see a GI specialist when you turn 45, keep reading below.
What are some of the reasons to see a gastrointestinal specialist when you turn 45?
- To screen for colorectal cancer — The average age that at-risk individuals should go in for screening is 45 years of age. The purpose of going to the GI specialist is to catch colorectal cancer in the early stages. Being seen by a GI can help determine if you have colorectal cancer or if you’re at risk of developing this type of cancer.
- To remove potentially harmful polyps — When you turn 45 and your gastrointestinal doctor recommends that you undergo a colonoscopy, they can quickly detect if there are any benign and precancerous polyps in your colon and efficiently remove them during the same procedure.
- If you’re a higher-risk patient — Some people wait until they’re 50 to see a gastrointestinal specialist, but your doctor may recommend you go at 45 if you have a higher risk of developing a GI condition or getting cancer. Some high-risk factors include a family history of colorectal cancer, being a smoker, and being overweight with a poor diet and little exercise, to name a few.
Don’t hesitate to contact Digestive Health Institute with further questions!
Still wondering what other things might be reasons to see a gastrointestinal specialist? If you are not sure why you might need one, you are looking for more information or you have other digestive health questions, please don’t wait to reach out to one of our team members for help. Our team of GI specialists has the training and experience to answer your burning questions. They can also help you find the most effective treatments for your conditions and for other common GI issues.
Contact our team today for more information or to schedule an initial appointment.