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Capital & Coast DHB Gastroenterology & GI Endoscopy Services

Public Service

Description

What is Gastroenterology?

Gastroenterology is the branch of medicine that looks at diseases of the oesophagus (gullet), stomach, small and large intestines (bowel), liver, gallbladder and pancreas. 

The oesophagus is the tube that joins your mouth with your stomach. It is a muscular tube that contracts to push the food through when you swallow.

The stomach is where food is broken down by acid and emptied into your intestines. The stomach has special cells lining its wall to protect it from these acids.

The intestines consist of the small intestine (duodenum, jejunum and ileum – different sections of small intestine) and the large intestine (colon).  As food passes through the small intestine, nutrients are broken down and absorbed.  When it passes into the colon, water is absorbed.  The waste that is left is passed as faeces (poo).

The liver is roughly the size of a football and is on your right side just under your ribs. It stores vitamins, sugar and iron which are used by cells in the body for energy.It also clears the body of waste products and drugs, produces substances that are used to help blood clot and aid the immune system, and produces bile which aids in digestion.

The pancreas is an elongated organ that lies in the back of the mid-abdomen. It is responsible for producing digestive juices and certain hormones, including insulin, the main hormone responsible for regulating blood sugar.
 
A gastroenterologist is a doctor specialising in the field of medicine which involves these closely related organs.

Consultants

Hours

Monday - Friday
8 AM - 4.30 PM

Referral Expectations

Your GP will refer you to our Department if they are concerned that you have problems that require a specialist opinion regarding the diagnosis or treatment of the condition. 

Clinics are held at:

Wellington Hospital - Level F, Clinical Services Block, Riddiford Street - follow the orange line from the Atrium and take the Purple Lifts up to the Department

Kenepuru Hospital - Kenepuru Outpatients

Kapiti Health Centre.

Waiting times for clinics range from 1-6 months depending on urgency, which is assessed from the letter we receive from your GP.
Before coming to our clinic, you may be asked to undergo tests such as blood tests, urine tests or stool/faeces tests (you collect a sample of your urine or poo for analysis).
Clinic appointments last 30-40 minutes.  A history of your symptoms will be taken as well as a review of any medications you are on (please bring these with you).  You will then be examined which may involve, depending on your complaints, a rectal examination.  This involves the insertion of the doctor’s finger or a tube into your bottom to examine the inside.
You may be referred on for some of the following radiology tests, depending on your condition: ultrasound scan, CT scan or MRI.

Procedures / Treatments / Common Conditions

  • Gastroscopy

    This is a procedure which allows the doctor to see inside your oesophagus, stomach, and the first part of the small intestine (duodenum) and examine the lining directly. … More PDF

  • Endoscopic Retrograde Cholangio Pancreatography (ERCP)

    A flexible tube with a tiny video camera attached (endoscope) is inserted through the mouth into the stomach and small intestine while you are under sedation (you have been given medication to make you drowsy).… More PDF

  • Colonoscopy

    This is a procedure which allows the doctor to see inside your large bowel and examine the surfaces directly and take biopsies (samples of tissue) if needed.  Treatment of conditions can also be undertaken.… More PDF

  • Liver Biopsy

    The best way to establish what type of liver disease is present and the extent of the disease, is a biopsy.… More

  • Hepatitis

    This is inflammation of the liver, commonly caused by viruses.  Hepatitis B and C are viruses that can cause chronic (long term) inflammation and damage to the liver.… More

  • Cirrhosis

    Cirrhosis is the term used to describe a diseased liver that has been badly scarred, usually due to many years of injury.… More

  • Peptic Ulcers

    Peptic ulcers are sores or eroded areas that form in the lining of the digestive tract.… More

  • Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)

    There are two types of IBD, ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease.  In these conditions, the immune system attacks the lining of the colon causing inflammation and ulceration, bleeding and diarrhoea.  In ulcerative colitis this only involves the large intestine, whereas in Crohn’s disease areas within the entire intestine can be… More

  • PEG Feeding

    PEG (Percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy) feeding allows patients to receive food directly into their stomach via a semi-permanent plastic tube placed through the abdominal wall.  It is used in patients who cannot swallow due to underlying disease such as having had a stroke or cancer of the throat. More PDF

Charges

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Contact Details

General Enquiries (Wellington Hospital): (04) 385 5999
Patient Enquiries: (04) 385 5947 or (04) 385 5949
Facsimile: (04) 385 5856

Gastroenterology Department
Paul Huston
Charge Nurse Manager
Gastroenterology Department
Wellington Regional Hospital
Ph: (04) 918 6694
Email: paul.huston@ccdhb.org.nz

Level 6
Clinical Services Building
Wellington Hospital
Riddiford Street
Newtown
Wellington 6021

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Street Address

Level 6
Clinical Services Building
Wellington Hospital
Riddiford Street
Newtown
Wellington 6021

Postal Address

Wellington Hospital
Private Bag 7902
Wellington South

This page was last updated at 1:02PM on September 14, 2016. This information is reviewed and edited by Capital & Coast DHB Gastroenterology & GI Endoscopy Services.