How to Prepare for a Visit to the Gastroenterologist

If you’re someone who doesn’t frequent the hospital, you’re probably clueless about which medical professional could help you. After all, the 30-minute talk with the doctor can sometimes be gruelling enough.

Challenging fear of doctors

That’s fine. A lot of patients are terrified of visiting the doctor’s office because of anxiety. In the United States, 3 percent of their population is affected by iatrophobia, an irrational and sometimes morbid fear of doctors or visiting them. Now, expecting that you don’t have a serious condition is completely normal.

If you’re curious about how the check-up will turn out, it would be so much better for you if you read about it first. This way, you’ll get relevant information about the physician that will allow you to ask all the right questions.

Gastroenterologists are in charge of diagnosing digestive system issues, particularly in the esophagus, colon, and abdomen, liver. They can also check the condition of excretory organs.

They can diagnose and treat patients with:

  • Hepatitis
  • Jaundice
  • Gastroesophageal reflux (GERD)
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
  • Colon Cancer
  • Diarrhea
  • Chron’s Disease
  • Heartburn
  • Ulcerative Colitis
  • Rectal Bleeding
  • Haemorrhoids
  • Other diseases of the liver

They have an extensive medical background that enables them to see a lot of diseases during a single check-up.

So, what makes them competent doctors? They have the education, license, and experience that qualify them for the medical profession.

Education

These physicians spend more than seven years of studying in a medical school. Before going on to become a fully-licensed doctor, they should have spent at least three years of residency training, as well as three years in fellowship training.

On top of this, a four-year medical degree is required of students before they could specialize in internal medicine. Internal medicine is a specialized field in medicine that refers to the diagnosis, cure, and prevention of a spectrum of diseases primarily experienced by adults. Gastroenterology is a subspecialty of this field.

License

Their high GPA in medical school allows them to be accepted to a broad range of institutions focused on internal medicine. Once obtaining their doctorate degree, they continue their studies in the institution of their choice.

Before entering the professional field, they have gone through a licensure examination organized by the country’s medical board. They would be given a professional license once they passed the examination.

This license is a legal document giving them clearance to practice their profession and treat patients in a public or private medical facility. Once they committed a malpractice to their patient such as complication from a surgery, the latter can file charges against the former.

Experience

Their residential training allows them to practise what they’ve learned in class at a real medical facility. They are guided by experienced doctors who provide them with the adequate knowledge, all whilst working with real hospital patients.

After the residential training, they then participate in a three-year fellowship held by a medical society that allows them to work with internal medicine patients.

Preparing for a visit

Once you’ve secured an appointment with your Gastroenterologist Brisbane, here’s how you can prepare:

  • If you have a slight or mild iatrophobia, convince yourself that talking to the doctor shouldn’t be intimidating at all.
  • Browse discussion threads and read about peoples’ experience with their physician.
  • Ask the right questions based on what the doctor supplied you. Some examples are:
    • Will you need medication?
    • Should you go back after a few weeks?
    • How would you monitor the illness, diagnosis or disease?
    • What measures, such as a change in diets or your daily routine, should you undertake?
  • Get the doctor’s contact details.

Author: Carrie Sze

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