Should I go to a Gastroenterologist or a Colorectal Surgeon? It is a very common question we have when we are unsure of the specialization of these fields, especially when the fields and specialization overlap in some areas. To understand the difference between a Gastroenterologist and a Colorectal Surgeon we have added useful information for you to better understand whom to consult.
What is a Gastroenterologist?
The gastroenterologist is a doctor trained in general internal medicine specialized in gastrointestinal tract disorders. If you consult a Gastroenterologist in India they will diagnose and treat the conditions related to the digestive tract i.e. stomach, liver, pancreas, colon, small intestine, and gallbladder. Also, some gastroenterologists are trained to use endoscopic instruments to observe the insides of the digestive tract, allowing them to extract polyps and diagnose colon cancer. To note, even though the gastroenterologist is trained to identify polyps they are not trained to operate on patients. Hence, if the large polyp is to be extracted then the gastroenterologist will refer to a colorectal surgeon.
Gastroenterology involves a detailed understanding of:
- The gastrointestinal organs
- The movement of material through the stomach and intestines
- The digestion and absorption of nutrients
- The removal of waste from the body
- The liver
Why would any doctor refer to a gastroenterologist?
The physicians at times refer to a gastroenterologist if they suspect that a problem with a digestive system is causing the person’s symptoms.
The symptoms may vary, but may include:
- Difficulty swallowing
- Stomach pain
- Nausea and vomiting
What is a Colorectal Surgeon?
Colorectal surgeons also known as proctologists are general surgeons with specialized training in the treatment and diagnosis of problems arising in the colon, rectum, or anus. If you consult the colorectal surgeons in India they treat the following conditions like rectal or colon cancer, anal fissures, and many more if necessary they also provide operations for rectal and colons such as a proctectomy, hemorrhoidectomy, and colectomy. They also perform colonoscopies where an instrument is used to extract precancerous colon polyps to diagnose or prevent colon cancer.
Colorectal Surgeons are referred to treat:
- Colorectal Cancer
- Colon Polyps
- Anal Fistula
- Anal Fissure
What are the similarities between colorectal surgeons and gastroenterologists?
Both are specialized in performing invasive treatments, such as endoscopy and laparoscopy.
The colorectal surgeons and gastroenterologists necessitate a keen understanding of principles related to sedation techniques, post-procedure recovery, and surgical asepsis i.e, keeping equipment sterile to prevent infections.
Both may also treat patients with similar conditions such as intestinal bleeding, irritable bowel syndrome, and colon cancer.
As physicians both follow a similar education path. Both have the option of becoming board certified in their respective specialties.
What are the differences between Colorectal Surgeons and Gastroenterologists?
As we discussed above both have similarities and also have differences, to be precise:
Colorectal surgeons don’t deal with issues related to stomach, pancreas, and liver diseases. Also, they don’t deal with medical treatments for inflammatory bowel diseases instead it is a part of Gastroenterologist.
The colorectal surgeon will be necessary if the condition is bad enough to necessitate surgery.
Colorectal surgeons can provide medical treatments for hemorrhoids and anal fissures and they only perform surgeries if needed and if the situation demands surgical intervention.
Hence, we can say colorectal surgery and gastroenterology are related but different specialties.
How to find the best Gastroenterologist and best Colorectal Surgeon?
You can find good doctors in India, but if you have a problem reaching them, you can also explore other options, you can easily find a trustworthy Colorectal Surgeon and the best Gastroenterologist in India Online. Nowadays, there are easy ways to connect to doctors online without losing your confidential details.
The Bottom Line:
It can be challenging to find which specialist is needed to treat you. At times, the doctor suggests another specialist. As mentioned above, the physician will direct to the right doctor as per the condition. In most cases, the gastroenterologist will be the first phone call unless it’s a surgical problem. In this Covid situation, many patients have been relieved with the online consultation. Thanks to the evolved methods of treatment, Teleconsultation with the best Gastroenterologist in India has helped many to get safe treatment.