Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition

MedStar Georgetown University Hospital Gastroenterology and Nutrition specialists provide comprehensive evaluation, diagnostic procedures, and therapy for infants, children, and adolescents with disorders of the stomach, intestines, colon, liver, and pancreas. They also offer services for many nutritional issues.

Our physicians have each completed three years of residency training in Pediatrics and three additional years of training in Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition. They are certified by the American Board of Pediatrics, as well as by the sub-board of Pediatric Gastroenterology. These special skills are essential for accurately evaluating and treating patients with abdominal pain, poor weight gain, vomiting, diarrhea, and constipation.

What will happen during a consultation with a pediatric gastroenterologist?

The purpose of your child's first visit to the pediatric gastroenterologist is to gather information about the problem through interviews with you and your child. It is a great benefit if the pediatric gastroenterologist has a chance to review any records of previous evaluations. If there are medical records and results, please have them with you or have your doctor send them to the Pediatric Gastroenterology Department before your visit. Your child will have a physical examination. Laboratory testing may be ordered. It is very unlikely that any diagnostic scope procedures will be done at the first visit.

GI Procedures

Most GI procedures are performed in the Pediatric Sedation Unit, NOT in the Adult Gastroenterology Endoscopy Unit. The Sedation Unit is staffed by doctors from the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) who are skilled in sedating and monitoring children during procedures. Occasionally, procedures are performed under general anesthesia in the operating room.

Nutrition

Aerodigestive (Feeding Disorder) Multidisciplinary Clinic

A swallowing disorder, or dysphasia, is a disruption of the swallowing process that interferes with an individual’s ability to eat and subsequently, may lead to multitude of physiologic and psychological issues.  Swallowing problems may be a result of diagnoses such as gastrointestinal disorders, developmental delays, prematurity, neurological disorders, limited lung function and developmental delays.

The practice focuses on serving families in the spirit of cura personalis- caring for the whole person. The interdisciplinary team will actively involve you and your child in coordination of care and implementing a treatment plan to:

  • Reduce tube feeding dependence
  • Improve weight gain
  • Establish a direct contact person for parents

Our aerodigestive team of pediatric subspecialists, nurses and support staff are dedicated to providing comprehensive care and services for patients with these issues: 

  • Gagging/coughing/chocking
  • Chronic cough
  • Recurrent pneumonia
  • Complicated esophageal reflux
  • Eosinophilic GI disorders
  • Tracheomalacia/ Laryngomalacia
  • Poor weight gain
  • Limited variety/selectivity of accepted food
  • Difficulty progressing with table food, food texture sensitivity
  • Nausea and/or vomiting with meals, poor feeding skills,
  • Inability to chew and swallow
  • G-tube dependency