If you have been having problems with your digestive system and stomach, then you have probably thought about visiting a gastroenterologist. If you know what to expect earlier, it will be easier to relate to the doctor. Most of the reasons to visit a gastroenterologist are the symptoms so before you go to the clinic you have the symptoms, and this makes it easier for the doctor. The first visit can be overwhelming, but there is no need to panic.
First gastroenterology visit
History and exam
Before visiting a gastroenterologist, you have probably been referred by your general practitioner or just decided to visit on your own. If it is a referral, then they will take time and look at your history and if otherwise, they will do a general examination. This is to help the gastroenterologist know what they are dealing with or the exact problem. Digestive diseases are diverse, so it is important to know the actual cause.
An interview is usually an important part of the first test. Looking at the medical history is one thing but asking the patient the necessary questions is important. The main aim of the interview is to identify the triggers of different conditions to make the treatment easier. This is because most of the digestive conditions are triggered by certain foods such as lactose and gluten intolerance. It is important to be honest as possible when answering the questions for a proper diagnosis.
Test are very common at the first visit, and they are all part of the diagnosis. Depending on the history and interview, the gastroenterologist will recommend a different test with the aim of coming up with a diagnosis. Some of the tests might be as simple as a stool test while some are diverse like the endoscopy which is done through scans and x-rays. The decision to carry out a particular test is solely based on the knowledge of the gastroenterologist.
Most of the time the gastroenterologist will recommend for the treatment to be started immediately, but some might advise you to come for a second appointment. This will depend on the particular clink that you visit.