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Downstate Times

The Newsletter for SUNY Downstate
University Hospital of Brooklyn

Downstate Times PDF
Issue 4, March 2013

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ISSUE 4 star MARCH 2013

Downstate Bay Ridge: The Advanced Endoscopy Center

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Frank Gress, MD, head of the Digestive Disease Center, and Adam Goodman, MD, assistant director of endoscopy.

All endoscopies are done as an outpatient procedure so that patients can quickly recover and go home the same day.

Patients who come to Downstate's Bay Ridge Urgent Care Center complaining of chest pains or shortness of breath are often relieved to find that what they are experiencing is not a serious asthma or heart attack but a treatable gastrointestinal complaint. Often the problem is gastroesophageal reflux disease, commonly known as GERD. Fortunately, the physicians and staff of the Advanced Endoscopy Center are expert at diagnosing and managing this and many other types of GI disorders.

Under the direction of Frank Gress, MD, Downstate's chief of gastroenterology and hepatology, the Advanced Endoscopy Center is an extension of the Digestive Disease Center at the Central Brooklyn campus. It is also part of the Ambulatory Surgery Center at Bay Ridge.

"Endoscopy is a means of examining the esophagus, stomach and bowels to diagnose gastrointestinal and digestive problems," explains Dr. Gress. All endoscopies are done as an outpatient procedure so that patients can quickly recover and go home the same day.

The Center treats a wide range of conditions, such as irritable bowel syndrome, chronic constipation or diarrhea, peptic ulcer, diverticular disease, hemorrhoids, and GI bleeding. In addition to colonoscopies and colorectal exams to detect the early signs of cancer (see the information on free cancer screening being offered this month), the following diagnostic tests are performed to determine the underlying causes of patients' complaints:

  • 48-hour Bravo ph study – to determine whether acid entering the esophagus is the cause of heartburn and other symptoms of GERD.
  • Cellvizio – The Advanced Endoscopy Center in Bay Ridge is the only medical facility in Brooklyn that uses this new technology. By employing one of the world's smallest microscopes, physicians can view and analyze tissue cells of the digestive tract in minute detail during an endoscopic exam and make a diagnosis on the spot, rather than having to wait for biopsy results to come back from the lab. In some cases, cancerous tissue can be removed during the exam, sparing the patient major surgery.
  • Small bowel video capsule endoscopy – to examine the small intestine.
  • Endoscopic ultrasound – to detect nodules, polyps, and pancreatic lesions.
  • Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) – both endoscopy and fluoroscopy are used to diagnose and treat certain problems of the biliary or pancreatic ductal systems.

Along with its broad range of services and advanced technologies, the Center boasts a diverse group of physicians and staff, many of whom share the same ethnic and linguistic backgrounds as their patients.

"In addition to patients from the nearby communities of Bay Ridge, Bensonhurst, and Sunset Park, we've had people come here from as far away as New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and even Florida," says Diana Perez, RN. Good word of mouth is evidently working.