Gastroenterology Services 

Gastroenterology often poses unique challenges for its specialists; however, these challenges create even more opportunities for new breakthroughs. Saint Louis University Hospital’s comprehensive gastroenterology (GI) services program is transforming the field with innovative research, clinical investigations and unconventional solutions every day. 

 Our highly-trained GI specialists provide the highest quality consultative, diagnostic and treatment services. Frequent collaborators, they bring a unique combination of general Internal Medicine training, superior endoscopic skills and experience, and the ability to integrate these fundamentals to provide the best quality care for their GI patients.

 Five of the SLUCare GI physicians who practice at Saint Louis University Hospital have been named ‘Best Doctors®’ – Drs. Banke Agarwal, Bruce Bacon, Frank Burton, Adrian DiBisceglie and Charlene Prather. Additionally, our gastroenterology services were ranked among the top 50 hospitals in the nation, according to U.S.News & World Report's "America's Best Hospitals" in 2004.

Physicians in SLUCare's division of gastroenterology and hepatology diagnose and treat diseases and disorders of the esophagus, stomach, intestines, gallbladder, biliary tract, pancreas and liver. Medical, endoscopic and surgical methods of diagnosis and treatment are used for conditions from ulcers to colon cancer. The following is a comprehensive list of the various GI conditions and disorders that we specialize in:

  • Barrett’s esophagus
  • Biliary diseases
  • Cancers of the gastrointestinal tract
  • Celiac disease (celiac sprue)
  • Chronic liver disease
  • Cirrhosis
  • Colorectal cancer
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Diverticulitis
  • Dysphagia
  • Esophageal cancer
  • Functional bowel diseases
  • Gallstones
  • Gastritis
  • Heartburn (GERD) 
  • Hemochromatosis
  • Hemorrhoids
  • Hepatitis A, B & C
  • Hiatal hernia
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Lactase deficiency
  • Liver cancer
  • Liver transplantation
  • Pancreatic cancer
  • Pancreatitis (acute and chronic)
  • Peptic ulcer
  • Stomach cancer
  • Ulcerative colitis
  • Whipple’s disease

Liver Disease
The SLUCare division of gastroenterology and hepatology cares for the complex needs of patients with liver disease. Our division evaluates and manages patients with various types of liver disease ranging from simple to complex. We strive to provide accurate, timely and cost-effective evaluation of patients with liver enzyme abnormalities, known liver disease and those with complications of cirrhosis. We also treat end-stage liver disease in patients awaiting liver transplant.

Ongoing clinical research activities allow some patients to be included in protocols evaluating various types of interferon or other agents for treatment of chronic viral hepatitis B or C. Some patients may receive some of the latest forms of therapy free of charge with the support of a pharmaceutical industry-sponsored study.

Our physicians specialize in the following types of liver diseases:

  • Budd-Chiari syndrome
  • Amyloidosis
  • Alcoholic liver disease
  • Alpha-1-antitrypsin deficiency
  • Chronic hepatitis C
  • Chronic hepatitis B
  • Cirrhosis
  • Hepatocellular carcinoma
  • Hereditary hemochromatosis
  • Nonalcholic steatohepatitis
  • Primary biliary cirrhosis
  • Primary sclerosing cholangitis
  • Wilson disease

To listen to Bruce Bacon, MD, discuss liver disease prevention, click here.

Endoscopic Procedures
Saint Louis University Hospital, working with SLUCare physicians, offers routine endoscopic procedures including:

  • Capsule endoscopy of small bowel
  • Colonoscopy
  • Liver biopsy
  • Upper endoscopy

Specialized diagnostic and therapeutic procedures include:

  • Esophageal dilatation
  • Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP)
  • Spincterectomy and removal of gallstones in the bile duct
  • Biliary stenting
  • Small bowel enteroscopy
  • Endoscopic ultrasound
  • Endoscopic removal of polyps from the colon and stomach
  • Placing of esophageal stents for carcinoma
  • Sclerotherapy and banding of esophageal varices
  • Endoscopic management of gastrointestinal hemorrhage