260 Patchogue Yaphank Rd # C
East Patchogue, NY 11772
631-289-0300

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By Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates
August 23, 2017
Category: GI Care
Tags: GI Procedures  

Our gastroenterologists are devoted to diagnosing and treating digestive and liver diseases for their patients. Gastroenterology is theGI Procedures practice of evaluating the intestines, liver, gallbladder, and pancreas for abnormalities. A variety of procedures including a colonoscopy can help them detect potential problems in Suffolk County, NY.

About GI Procedures

Some common GI procedures performed by Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates include (and are not limited to):

  • Flexible Sigmoidoscopy
  • Endoscopic Ultrasonography
  • Upper Endoscopy
  • 24 hour pH testing using Bravo
  • Endoscopic Retrograde Cholangiopancreatography
  • Capsule Endoscopy
  • Esophageal Dilation
  • Percutaneous Endoscopic Gastrostomy

A colonoscopy in Suffolk County examines the lining of the large intestine (the colon) for any abnormalities. A thin flexible tube is inserted into the anus and slowly advanced into the rectum and colon. This colonoscope has a lens and light source that allows your gastroenterologist to view images on a monitor. This GI procedure is recommended for screening for colorectal cancer. It also is used to evaluate bleeding or chronic diarrhea symptoms. A clear liquid diet is required the day before the procedure.

Another GI procedure performed by your gastroenterologist is endoscopic ultrasonography. This allows them to examine the stomach and esophageal lining and the upper and lower GI tract down the lower tract. This studies organs near the tract too such as the lungs, liver, pancreas and the gallbladder. This test is done to get detailed images of the digestive tract and to diagnose a variety of digestive disorders. It also is used to evaluate known abnormalities seen at endoscopy procedures or on x-rays. It can diagnose diseases of the bile duct, gallbladder and pancreas too. It also helps to determine the spread of certain cancers and could save lives.

To learn more about a colonoscopy in Suffolk County, NY, or other GI procedures, call to schedule an appointment at 631-289-0300.

By Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates
June 23, 2017
Category: GI Procedures
Tags: Colonoscopy  

Find out what situations or factors warrant getting a colonoscopy.Colonscopy

At some point, everyone should get a colonoscopy. Sure, our Suffolk County, NY, gastroenterologists know that any intestinal procedure isn’t really a day at the spa, but this diagnostic procedure is an important part of your preventive care, especially when you reach a certain age.

Getting a colonoscopy is something every man and woman should do once they reach the age of 50 if they are otherwise healthy and have no risk factors. A colonoscopy is the very best way to detect colorectal cancer.

Of course, there are some situations and symptoms that may warrant needing a colonoscopy earlier than 50 years old:

  • Unexplained abdominal pain
  • Rectal bleeding
  • Diarrhea/constipation
  • Sudden or unexplained weight loss
  • Any changes in your bowels
  • Chronic fatigue or exhaustion

If you notice that any of these symptoms last for a few weeks then it’s a good idea to give our Suffolk County intestinal doctor a call. When you come in we will better be able to determine whether a colonoscopy is the best way to detect the cause of your symptoms. It doesn’t matter what age you are, either. If you are experiencing these symptoms you should always get it checked out by a medical professional.

What are the risk factors associated with colorectal cancer?

Here are some of the most common risk factors linked to this form of cancer:

  • A personal history of colorectal polyps
  • A family history of polyps or colorectal cancer
  • Being African American
  • Having ulcerative colitis, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) or irritable bowel disease (IBD)

If you have any of these risk factors then you should start getting a colonoscopy much sooner than 50 years old. You may also need to come in more regularly for this diagnostic procedure. Those who are healthy, do not have any risk factors and have healthy results from their first colonoscopy may not need another one for 10 years. When you come in for your results we will better be able to determine how often you should come in for care.

Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates in Suffolk County, NY, is here to serve you, whether you are dealing with symptoms abdominal pain or you need to schedule a routine colonoscopy. Call us today to learn more.

By Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates
April 27, 2017
Category: Gastroenterology
Tags: Colon Cancer  

Why a colon cancer screening from Suffolk County gastroenterologist can save your lifecolon cancer

A colon cancer screening is the best way to detect colon cancer. Colorectal cancer is the third leading cause of cancer deaths, according to the American Cancer Society. 2016 estimates indicate that over 95,000 cases of colon cancer will be diagnosed in the United States this year, and over 49,000 people will die of colorectal cancer this year.

Your doctors at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates in East Patchogue, NY, want to help you prevent colon cancer. They serve residents of Suffolk County with state-of-the-art colon cancer screenings and gastroenterology services.

A colonoscopy is a major tool in colon cancer screening. Gastroenterologists agree that you should have a colonoscopy if you are 50 years old to screen for colorectal cancer. In addition to initial screening, there are other reasons you may need a colonoscopy, including:

  • Chronic pain in your abdomen
  • Abnormal growths and intestinal polyps
  • Chronic constipation or recurrent diarrhea
  • Bleeding from your rectum or blood in your stool

During a colonoscopy, you will be sedated and a thin tube will be inserted into your rectum and threaded up into your colon. The tube has a tiny camera which can aid the doctor in examining your colon, removing any polyps or taking a sample of tissue for biopsy.

Because you will be sedated, it’s important to bring a friend or family member with you who can drive you home after your procedure. A colonoscopy procedure takes about 45 minutes, but due to sedation, your recovery period can take between 2 and 3 hours.

A colon cancer screening is a vitally important part of your healthcare because it can detect signs of colorectal cancer early. Remember that early detection means early treatment and a better treatment outcome. A colon cancer screening can save your life! For more information on colon cancer screening and other gastroenterology services, call your doctors at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates in Suffolk County, NY. Don’t wait for your colon cancer screening; call today!

By Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates
February 24, 2017
Category: Gastroenterology
Tags: Blood in Stool  

Seeing blood in your stool can be a frightening experience. It can also be embarrassing to discuss even with your doctor, so you might gastroenterologyfeel conflicted about what's causing the blood and how to deal with it. The gastroenterology professionals at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates in Suffolk County, NY, see many patients with this issue, which is more common than you might think. Below, they explain some of the reasons why people find blood in their stool.

Red blood

The color of the blood in the stool is an important item to share with your Suffolk County gastroenterologist, as this can help them determine where in the body it's coming from. Red blood, for example, indicates that the problem is with something in the lower gastrointestinal (GI) tract; the small intestine or the colon. Hemorrhoids are one such cause, and while the sight of blood can be distressing, hemorrhoids are typically self-limiting. Constipation can also strain the anal area, producing anal fissures that can bleed during bowel movements. If you've been diagnosed with either of these problems, try increasing the fiber in your diet to deal with the discomfort.

Dark blood

Blood that comes from the upper GI tract - the esophagus, stomach or large intestine - is often due to ulcers. These lesions in the lining of the stomach are common and their treatment is fairly simple, but they must be diagnosed by your gastroenterologist through imaging tests.

Though uncommon, blood in the stool can be a sign of colon cancer. For patients who are over 50 or at risk for developing this cancer, your gastroenterologist recommends regular cancer screenings, as the blood in the stool is often not immediately seen and shows up only on lab tests.

Contact Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates in Suffolk County, NY, with any gastrointestinal-related problems you may be having. This field of medicine is our providers' speciality and they want to help you!

By Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates
January 09, 2017
Category: Gastroenterology
Tags: diarrhea  

Find out what might be behind this one unpleasant gastrointestinal symptom.

Sure, it can be an embarrassing subject to talk about but if you can’t talk about it with one of our Suffolk County, NY gastroenterologists, then with whom? Diarrhea is an all-too-common issue that affects everyone at some point. Find out what might be to blame for your uncomfortable gastrointestinal issues.

Causes of diarrhea include:

  • Gastroenteritis (often referred to as the stomach flu)
  • Food poisoning
  • Food allergies
  • Giardiasis
  • Lactose intolerance
  • Ulcerative colitis
  • Celiac disease (gluten intolerance)
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Colorectal polyps
  • Amebiasis (a parasitic infection contracted in tropical areas of the world)
  • Diverticulitis
  • Diabetic neuropathy
  • PMS
  • Appendicitis (considered a medical emergency; medical attention must be sought right away)
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
  • A side effect of medication

And the list of causes could go on and on. So suffice it to say there are a lot of health problems that could lead to diarrhea. While some are more common and less serious causes, there are some conditions that are serious and will require medical attention. Unfortunately, it’s hard to tell if visiting your Suffolk County GI doctor is necessary, but it's best to take precautions and come in if:

  • Diarrhea lasts for a few days
  • There is blood in the stool
  • You experience severe stomach pains
  • You have a fever of 102 degrees or higher
  • You develop signs of dehydration (e.g. decreased urination; dry mouth)

If you aren’t experiencing any of these symptoms and want to do the wait-and-see approach then here are some simple at-home ways to treat your diarrhea,

  • Take frequent small drinks of water to stay hydrated
  • Start out by eating only mild foods for the next few days
  • Stay away from caffeine, alcohol and spicy food for a couple of days or, better yet, until symptoms go away
  • Stay away from milk for a couple of days even after symptoms go away
  • You can also pick up a nonprescription antidiarrheal medication if you’ve been dealing with diarrhea for more than 6 hours. If you have blood in your stool or a high fever you do not want to take these medications. You’ll want to seek professional medical attention as soon as possible.

If you are ever concerned about changes in your gastrointestinal health, never hesitate to turn to Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates in Suffolk County, NY for the care you need. It’s always better to play it safe when it comes to your health.

By Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates
October 27, 2016
Category: Gastroenterology
Tags: Heartburn   Acid Reflux  

Heartburn and other unpleasant symptoms can occur frequently if you suffer from acid reflux. Your Suffolk County, NY acid refluxgastroenterologists at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates discuss heartburn and other signs of acid reflux and share information on treatments here.

Acid reflux symptoms

If you have acid reflux, you may experience:

  • Heartburn: Heartburn causes a burning pain in your chest and upper abdomen and occurs when stomach acids back up into your esophagus. It's called "heart" burn because the pain is usually felt in the chest, but luckily, heartburn doesn't actually affect your heart.
  • Regurgitation: Regurgitation occurs when stomach acids back up into your throat or mouth. If you experience the problem, you may notice a bad taste in your mouth and may even vomit a small amount of stomach contents into your mouth when you burp.
  • Bloating: After you eat, you may feel bloated or notice that your stomach feels very heavy or full.
  • Trouble Swallowing: Acid reflux can cause a lump-in-the-throat sensation or may make it more difficult to swallow.
  • Cough and Sore Throat: Those cold symptoms may actually be caused by reflux. Hoarseness, coughing and throat pain often accompany the condition.

Suffolk County gastroenterologists can help ease your acid reflux symptoms

Over-the-counter antacids, H-2 receptor blockers and proton pump inhibitors can reduce acid reflux symptoms, but if your problem doesn't get better or worsens, your gastroenterologist can offer more effective treatments. Stronger prescription-strength proton pump inhibitors, H-2 receptor blockers and other medications may relieve your symptoms. In most cases, taking medications and making a few lifestyle changes, such as losing weight, avoiding acidic foods and elevating the head of your bed, will be very effective in easing heartburn and other acid reflux symptoms. If your problem is severe, your doctor may recommend surgery to improve the function of your esophagus.

There's no reason to suffer from acid reflux-related heartburn. Call your Suffolk County, NY gastroenterologists at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates at (631) 289-0300 to find out which treatment options are right for you.

By Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates
August 17, 2016
Category: Gastroenterology
Tags: Diverticulosis  

Find out more about this gastrointestinal condition and how it may affect you.

When it comes to GI problems, it can be difficult to know what is causing your symptoms. After all, there are so many conditions out there that share the same symptoms. Fortunately, your Suffolk County gastroenterologists can help you determine the cause of your Diverticulosisproblems.

What is diverticulosis?

Diverticulosis is a condition in which pouches develop in the walls of the large intestines (also known as the colon).

What are the symptoms?

In many cases, these pouches will not cause any symptoms. In fact, this condition often goes undetected until other symptoms such as diverticulitis occur. Diverticulitis is when an infection occurs within the pouches of the colon wall.

You may also experience painful diverticular disease, which is often caused by other conditions such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). Common symptoms of painful diverticular disease include abdominal pain and diarrhea, but no other signs of an infection.

How is this condition usually treated?

Diverticulosis is actually surprisingly easy to manage because it usually only involves making small lifestyle adjustments such as:

  • Exercising daily
  • Taking a fiber supplement
  • Drinking plenty of water
  • Following a high-fiber diet that is rich in vegetables, fruits, whole grains and beans

Just by making these changes to your daily life you can often prevent the formation of new pouches, which can lower your chances of developing an infection.

How do you prevent diverticulosis?

The treatment plan and prevention plan for diverticulosis are very similar. Make sure you exercise regularly, drink enough water each day and eat a diet that is high in fiber and you could prevent this problem from happening to you.

Worried you may be dealing with diverticulosis? The only way to truly know is to visit our GI specialist in Suffolk County. Call Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates today and schedule your next appointment with us.

By Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates
June 21, 2016
Category: Gastroenterology
Tags: diarrhea  

Stomach issues can quickly take a toll on your quality of life. Diarrhea happens to almost everyone. But when should you see your Diarrheagastroenterologist for your GI issues? Learn more with help from your Suffolk County, NY gastroenterologist at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates in East Patchogue, NY.

What causes diarrhea? 
Many ordinary, everyday things can cause diarrhea. Stress, certain foods, or particular medications can trigger a bout of stomach problems. Bacteria and viruses can also play a part in triggering diarrhea. Additionally, underlying conditions can cause this uncomfortable condition, including:

  • Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
  • Diabetes
  • Celiac Disease (gluten allergy)
  • Hypothyroidism

How can I deal with my diarrhea? 
Diarrhea is described as loose stools which occur more frequently than normal. This can leave you running to the bathroom much more often than usual. If you experience diarrhea, there are several things you can do to combat this situation. Be sure to drink plenty of water to keep your body hydrated. Avoid triggers by eating bland foods, such as soup, then gradually incorporating yogurt, fruits and vegetables, rice, and potatoes into your diet. Avoid caffeine and wash your hands regularly to avoid the spreading any germs.

When should I see my gastroenterologist? 
Most cases of diarrhea resolve on their own within a few days. However, when a case of diarrhea becomes chronic, it could be in the sufferer’s benefit to see their gastroenterologist. Some tell-tale signs that your condition needs professional assistance include:

  • diarrhea that lasts more than a few days
  • severe stomach or rectal pain
  • blood in the stool
  • black or tarry stools
  • diarrhea accompanied by a high (over 102 degrees) fever

If you experience one or more of these symptoms you should see your doctor at Brookhaven Gastroenterology. He or she uses a physical examination, various tests, imaging technology to look for inflammation in the stomach’s lining, stool cultures, or colonoscopy to determine the root cause of your diarrhea. Treatment depends on the severity of your condition.

For more information on diagnosing your gastroenterological issues, please contact your doctor at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates in Suffolk County, NY. Call (631) 289-0300 to schedule your appointment today!

By Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates
April 14, 2016
Category: Gastroenterology

What you need to know about a colon screening

Colon cancer screenings are vital to diagnosing colon cancer while still in its early stages. Current recommendations are for everyone colon cancer screeningover 50 years old to have a colon cancer screening. If you are over 50, it’s time for you to see a skilled gastroenterologist like the doctors at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates in Suffolk County, New York. If you schedule regular colon cancer screenings, you can lower your risk of colon cancer by as much as 90 percent!

According to the American Cancer Society, common symptoms of colon cancer to watch for include:

  • Diarrhea, constipation or a change in stool consistency
  • Dark stools, which may indicate blood in your stool
  • Bleeding from your rectum
  • Cramping and pain in your abdomen
  • Fatigue and weakness
  • Weight loss

Colon cancer typically starts as a polyp, which is a precancerous growth in the lining of your colon. If a polyp is found, it can be removed before it can become cancerous. The doctors at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates want you to know some of the risk factors of colon cancer, such as:

  • A high fat diet, low fiber diet
  • A sedentary lifestyle and obesity
  • Smoking and alcohol use
  • A family history of colon cancer

There are several colon screening procedures available, and your doctors at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates will recommend the treatments best for you. Procedures available for colon cancer screening include:

  • A colonoscopy- to examine your entire colon and rectal lining
  • A sigmoidoscopy- to examine your lower colon and rectal lining
  • CT colonography- using CT technology to take scans of your bowel
  • Stool tests- to check for blood and abnormal DNA in your stool
  • Stool tests and sigmoidoscopy- when combined these procedures may be more effective than each test performed separately

The doctors at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates want you to know that colorectal cancer is the third leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States. In fact, each year, about 150,000 new cases of colorectal cancer will be diagnosed in the United States and 50,000 people will die from it.

Don’t become a statistic! If you are over 50 years old, don’t wait, because your life might depend on it. Call the doctors at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates in Suffolk County, New York and find out more about colon cancer screening. Call today!

By Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates
February 22, 2016
Category: Gastroenterology
Tags: Rectal Bleeding  

Minor rectal bleeding, which is described as droplets of bright red blood in the stool or on toilet paper after a bowel movement, can be caused by several situations. While occasional minor rectal bleeding is not necessarily a sign of a serious problem, it is important to Hermorroidsmonitor, and consult with a doctor if bleeding becomes persistent and heavier, in order to find the cause as quickly as possible.

Common Causes of Minor Rectal Bleeding

The doctors at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates, Specialists in Digestive and Liver Diseases in Suffolk County, are here to identify the most common causes of blood in the stool and after a bowel movement as:

Hemorrhoids

Hemorrhoids are the leading cause of minor rectal bleeding. They result from swelling of blood vessels in the anus and rectum. While some hemorrhoids can be painful and cause discomfort, they do not pose a danger to overall health and are not associated with colorectal cancer. Most cases either resolve on their own, or can be treated with topical creams and ointments.

Anal Fissures

Fissures are small tears in the lining of the rectum that can develop from straining during constipation, as well as cases of extreme diarrhea. In additional to minor bleeding, they can also be very painful, but do not pose a threat to general health and are not related to colorectal cancer or more serious conditions of the digestive system.

Proctitis

Inflammation of the rectal lining can cause pain and minor bleeding. Proctitis can be a sign of inflammatory bowel disease, but can also result from an infection, or as a side effect of radiation treatment or certain medications.

Rectal ulcers

Although rare, rectal ulcers can result from chronic constipation and straining during bowel movements.

Polyps

Polyps are small growths inside the lining of the bowel and colon (large intestine). Although the polyps are benign, they can potentially develop into colon cancer, and should be removed when they are found.

Colorectal Cancer

The second leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States, this form of cancer can be extremely treatable when caught early. A diagnostic test known as a colonoscopy can detect the presence of polyps, and remove them once they are found. Colon cancer treatment varies depending on when it is diagnosed, and the general health and personal factors of each patient.

Gastroenterologist in Suffolk County

It is important to monitor and seek medical attention for new or worsening symptoms. If you are experiencing rectal bleeding or other symptoms, contact Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates in Suffolk County at (631) 289-0300 to schedule an appointment today.

By Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates
January 06, 2016
Category: Gastroenterology
Tags: Acid Reflux  

I Always Have Heartburn! Is it Acid Reflux?

Once or twice after eating spicy food, you’ve felt that burning feeling called heartburn. Usually it goes away, but now you notice the acid refluxburning feeling is happening a lot. You wonder if it is something more than just plain heartburn.

You could have acid reflux. If you do, you are not alone. In fact, according to the American College of Gastroenterology, over 60 million Americans suffer heartburn at least once a month, with 15 million feeling the burn daily. If you are one of these people, you need to see a professional. It’s time to make an appointment with Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates, your digestive specialists in Suffolk County, New York.

Acid reflux occurs when the acidic stomach contents make their way up into the esophagus. There is a sphincter muscle that acts as a valve to protect the esophagus from stomach acid, but sometimes this valve can fail, resulting in stomach acid flowing upward into the esophagus, and you get heartburn.

There are some things you can do to help prevent acid reflux. You can try to:

  • Eat small meals
  • Avoid pressure on your abdomen from belts or certain exercises
  • Stop smoking
  • Lose weight
  • Stay upright for two to three hours after eating, don’t lie down
  • Avoid spicy foods
  • Take over-the-counter antacids

If you find yourself taking antacids continuously or you feel heartburn often, it can be developing into gastro-esophageal reflux disease, commonly called GERD. Common symptoms of the disease are:

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Abdominal or chest pain
  • Dry coughing or wheezing
  • Throat problems
  • Erosion of your teeth
  • Bad breath

If your symptoms persist, it is important to see your gastroenterologist at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates, in Suffolk County, New York. The highly skilled specialists at Brookhaven can help with your heartburn or acid reflux, before it gets to be a more serious problem. Protect yourself, call today!

By Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates
November 11, 2015
Category: Gastroenterology
Tags: Blood in Stool  

Finding blood in your stool can be a frightening experience for anyone. Whether you find it yourself or as the result of a blood test, bloody stool can be the sign of serious medical problems. Luckily, that is not always the case. Your Suffolk County Gastroenterologist Blood In Stool can assist you in diagnosing and treating any problem you may have.

How do I know if I have blood in my stool?
In some cases, you may be able to see that you have bloody stool. It may be visible as bright red on the tissue or in the toilet bowl after a bowel movement. On the other hand, you may notice a black tarry substance in your stool, meaning that the bleeding is higher in the digestive tract. Sometimes, blood in your stool is unable to been seen by the naked eye, and can be detected by tests ordered by your doctor.

What are some causes of bloody stool? 
There are many causes of blood in the stool, ranging from mild to severe. While not every case requires immediate medical attention, it is important to get any abnormalities or sudden changes checked by your doctor. Some common causes of bloody stool are:

  • Angiodysplasia: This condition makes blood vessels fragile and prone to bleeding, which can cause blood in the stool.
  • Anal fissure: Anal fissures are a small cut or tear in the tissue along the anus. They often make it painful to pass a bowel movement.
  • Colitis: Inflammation of the colon can cause bleeding or inflammatory bowel syndrome, or IBS.
  • Diverticular disease: Small pouches, or diverticula, form on the wall of the colon, and usually do not cause any symptoms. However, sometimes the pouches can become infected and bleed.
  • Peptic ulcers: These open sores in the upper intestine or on the lining of the stomach are caused by bacteria or long term use of anti-inflammatory drugs.
  • Polyps or cancer: Polyps are benign, and could potentially grow into cancerous growths. Blood in the stool caused by polyps or cancer is not able to been seen with the naked eye.

What do I do if I find blood in my stool? 
If you can see blood in your stool, it is never a bad idea to have an examination or colonoscopy preformed by your doctor. If the bloody stools are accompanied by a persistent fever, weight loss, chest pain, difficulty swallowing, or you are over 50 years of age, you should have testing done as soon as possible.

The best way to find out if your bloody stool is the result of something more severe is to visit your doctor at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates in Suffolk County, NY. Call (631) 289-0300 to schedule your appointment today.

By Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates
August 12, 2015
Category: Gastroenterology

Find out how often you should get colon cancer screenings in Suffolk County.

According to the American Cancer Society, it’s recommended that both men and women over the age of 60 should be getting regular Colon Cancer Screening colon cancer screenings from their Suffolk County gastroenterologist. Those patients at average risk for developing colorectal cancer should get one of the following tests:

  • Flexible sigmoidoscopy (every five years)
  • Colonoscopy (10 year)
  • Virtual colonoscopy/CT colonography (five years)
  • Double-contrast barium enema (5 years)

If your flexible sigmoidoscopy, CT colonography or barium enema results have come back positive then your Suffolk County gastroenterologist will advise that you have a colonoscopy.

What puts someone at risk for colorectal cancer?

There are several factors that could increase your chances of developing colorectal cancer:

Medical History Factors

  • Family history of colorectal cancer or polyps
  • Past history of colorectal cancer or polyps
  • A history of ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease


Lifestyle Factors

Diet: Those with diets high in red meat (e.g. beef, pork, etc.) and processed meats (e.g. hot dogs) are also at an increased risk for colorectal cancer. Even cooking meats at extreme temperatures can increase this risk, even though the cause isn’t entirely clear. Try to incorporate more vegetables, fruits and whole grains into your diet and talk to your Suffolk County gastroenterologist about your diet and other ways to make it more colon-friendly.

Sedentary lifestyle: If you don’t exercise or aren’t physically active then you are more likely to develop colorectal cancer than someone who is physically active. Therefore, incorporate more exercises into your daily life (at least 30 minutes of cardio five times a week) to reduce your cancer risk.

Obesity: While obese men tend to have a stronger link to developing colorectal cancer, it can affect both men and women. If you are overweight, talk to your Suffolk County gastroenterologist about the best ways to lose weight to reduce your risk.

Smoking: While smoking is more directly linked to an increase in lung cancer, it can also predispose you to colorectal cancer. We would be happy to discuss the different smoking cessation options out there that can help protect your colon health.

Alcohol use: Heavy alcohol use has also been linked to colorectal cancer. This may have to do with the decrease in folic acid that is found in heavy drinkers. Men should limit their alcohol consumption to two drinks a day and women to only one drink a day.

Whether you are at risk for colon cancer or not you should still follow the American Cancer Society guidelines for colon cancer screenings. These screenings save lives. If it’s time you got screened call your Suffolk County gastroenterologist at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates.

By Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates
June 09, 2015
Category: Gastroenterology
Tags: diarrhea  

Find out what could be to blame for your gastrointestinal issues.

Why it might be embarrassing to talk about it’s safe to say that everyone will experience a bout of diarrhea at some point in their lifetime. Sure, it’s anything but pleasant but it’s important that you find out what’s causing your problems so you can treat it effectively. If you are Diarrheaexperiencing diarrhea, your Suffolk County gastroenterologists at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates are here to offer up the top four most common reasons why.

1. Bacterial infections

Salmonella, E. coli and campylobacter are the most common bacteria that contaminate both foods and drinks. You can protect yourself, however, from these nasty infections by refrigerating your food and storing them properly. Furthermore, always be sure to cook food thoroughly to kill any bacteria that might be lurking.

2. Viral gastroenteritis

An infection that is a caused by the dreaded rotavirus or norovirus can manifest symptoms similar to a bacterial infection. Unfortunately, antibiotics won’t work to clear the infection, only rest and staying hydrated. During this time, it’s important to stay clear of greasy or spicy foods.

Stick to a bland diet until you can start to eat solid foods again. However, your Suffolk County gastroenterologists state that washing hands often and handling food properly are the best ways to prevent this viral infection.

3. Inflammatory bowel disease

You may have also heard your Suffolk County gastroenterologists refer to it as Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis. Both of these conditions can cause inflammation in the digestive tract, which can cause fever, weight loss, abdominal pain, and diarrhea. However, we are able to treat these conditions with certain prescription medications like corticosteroids and immunosuppressants.

4. Irritable bowel syndrome

While some people confuse this with IBD, this condition won’t can inflammation in the digestive tract like IBS does. If you have IBS you may experience stomach pain, bloating and gas, and bouts of either diarrhea or constipation.

Some people with IBS find that greasy, fried or fatty foods can trigger their symptoms; however this varies from person to person. Some find that stress can also manifest IBS symptoms. If you think your diarrhea might be caused by IBS, then it’s time to talk to your Suffolk County gastroenterologists about your triggers.

If you are experiencing severe or long bouts of diarrhea then it’s time to pinpoint the issue. Contact your Suffolk County gastroenterologists at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates.

By Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates
February 19, 2015
Category: Gastroenterology
Tags: Stomach Problems  

Find out what this symptom means for you and whether it’s time to see your Suffolk County gastroenterologist.

It can be a bit unnerving when you notice blood in your stool. While not all of these issues are serious or require immediate medical attention, it’s still important to seek the advice of your Suffolk County gastroenterologist when you are experiencing this unpleasant Stoolproblem. Find out what could be the cause of your bleeding and whether it’s time to see your gastroenterologist.

Anal fissure: A tear in the lining of the anus is a common issue that causes minor bleeding. This can also cause pain during bowel movements. You may notice bright red blood either in the toilet or on the toilet paper. This issue is not a cause for concern and most of the time it will heal on its own without treatment.

Hemorrhoids: These masses of tissue in the anus occur in everyone; however, when they become enlarged they can cause bleeding; however, the bleeding is usually mild. While anal fissures and hemorrhoids are often mistaken for one another, hemorrhoids won’t typically cause pain when you use the bathroom. Most of the time hemorrhoids will go away on their own; however, if you experience extreme itching and pain you may want to talk to your Suffolk County gastroenterologist about your treatment options.

Diverticulitis: This condition usually affects adults in their 50s and 60s and is caused by small sacs that develop on the colon. These sacks do not go away on their own and require surgery to remove them. Many people with diverticulitis don’t even experience any symptoms and the condition is not a cause for concern. However, if you do experience bleeding from this condition it will definitely be heavier than bleeding caused by anal fissures or hemorrhoids and it’s usually darker in color.

Colitis: Colitis is a condition that causes inflammation of the colon. Colitis can be caused by a variety of different diseases including Crohn’s colitis, ulcerative colitis and bacterial and viral infections. Ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s colitis cause chronic inflammatory that is characterized by bloody diarrhea and abdominal pain. The bleeding may be severe at times. Colitis caused by bacteria or a virus can also cause abdominal pains, diarrhea and bleeding.

Peptic ulcers: These sores occur in the lining of the stomach or upper portion of the small intestines. Peptic ulcer can be caused by a bacterial infection or long-term use of NSAID medications such as aspirin. Peptic ulcers can cause chest and abdominal pain as well as fatigue, vomiting, and dark, bloody stools. Your Suffolk County gastroenterologist can diagnose and treat your peptic ulcers with prescription medication.

If you are noticing blood in your stool or experiencing other symptoms as well then it’s probably time you scheduled an appointment with your Suffolk County gastroenterologist, Dr. Ravi Singh, MD at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates.

By Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates
January 28, 2015
Category: Gastroenterology

ColonoscopyYou may have many questions when your doctor recommends a colonoscopy. Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates in Suffolk County offers some answers.

What is a colonoscopy?

A colonoscopy is a minor procedure that allows the doctor to see the entire length of your colon. A flexible, thin, lighted tube with a camera on the end is passed through your rectum throughout your entire colon.

Who should get a colonoscopy?

The American Cancer Society recommends that when you turn fifty, you should have your first screening colonoscopy, then one every ten years after. If at any age you have a change in bowel habits, begin passing blood, or have any other concerning problems, see your doctor. After an examination, your doctor will determine if you need to have a colonoscopy.

Why should I get a colonoscopy?

A colonoscopy can help diagnose colon cancer. In the United States, colon cancer is the third most common cancer diagnosed. A colonoscopy can help detect colon cancer early. The sooner colon cancer is found, the chances of survival significantly improve.

Does a colonoscopy cause pain?

You will receive an anesthesia for the procedure called conscious sedation. This will cause you to feel very little to no pain during the procedure.

How do I prepare for a colonoscopy?

Your doctor will give you instructions on how to prepare for your colonoscopy. You will be given instructions to do a bowel prep, an oral laxative solution you drink to clean out you bowels. You will also be given instructions on what kind of diet to follow for the day or two before the procedure. This usually includes clear liquids and fasting. Following these instructions is very important.

How long does a colonoscopy take?

The procedure itself can take anywhere from fifteen minutes to an hour. You should plan on being at the facility for two to three hours to allow for preparation prior to the procedure and recovery time afterward.

What happens if something is found?

If the doctor sees an abnormal growth called a polyp, it can be removed immediately. If they see an area of abnormal tissue, they can take a biopsy of it. In both cases, the tissue is sent to pathology to be studied for a diagnosis. Your doctor will inform you of your results.

How can I expect to feel after a colonoscopy?

As you will receive anesthesia during the procedure, you will need someone to drive you home. You may be groggy and sleepy for a little while, but you will return to your normal self in a few short hours.

Call Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates Today!

Knowledge is power. The more you know about what is going to happen, the more comfortable you will feel having a colonoscopy! To have more of your questions answered or to schedule a visit, contact Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates in Suffolk County at (631) 289-0300 today.

Are you a patient of Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates? If so, we would love to hear about your experiences below!

Colon Cancer ScreeningColon cancer is the third most common cause of cancer in the US, and the American Cancer Society predicts that approximately 96,830 new cases of colon cancer will be diagnosed in 2014 alone. With these shocking statistics, it’s important that everyone does their part to ensure that their colons are healthy. It might not be the first thought on anyone’s mind; however, it should be. Here is why it’s high time that you scheduled a colon cancer screening:
 

1. Prevention is key

Regular colon cancer screenings is one of the most effective ways to prevent colon cancer. Even if you don’t have symptoms, this test will be able to detect the smallest signs of the disease even if you aren’t experiencing any problems.
 

2. Polyps take years to develop

Most polyps take years to develop into colon cancer (as long as 10 to 15 years in some instances). When you get routine screenings, we can remove these polyps before they actually turn into cancer.
 

3. Stop the disease in its tracks

Even if a polyp has already turned into colon cancer, if we can detect the cancer early, it’s highly curable. That means going in for a regular screening could save your life and offer a significantly better prognosis.
 

When should I begin regular colon cancer screenings?

If you don’t have any risk factors, we recommend coming in for routine screenings after you turn 50. If you have a family history of colon cancer, have been diagnosed with IBS or have a history of colorectal polyps you’ll want to get screened sooner and more frequently. We would be happy to sit down with you and discuss how often you should be coming in for screenings.
 

Call Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates Today!

If it’s time to set up a colon cancer screening, we would be happy to get you started. Don’t put this off any longer; the health of your colon depends on it!
 
Are you a patient of Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates? If so, we would love to hear about your experiences below!
By Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates
November 26, 2014
Category: Gastroenterology
Tags: diarrhea  

There are several culprits that could cause diarrhea to flare up.

Sure, this might not be the most comfortable issue to discuss with others; however, if you don’t feel comfortable talking about it with your doctor, then who can you? If you are experiencing diarrhea, then you know that it can put quite the damper on your daily routine. It makes your workday more stressful, it makes choosing meals a challenge, and forget about actually enjoying a night out. If you have diarrhea, here are some of the top causes for this pesky little problem and how to handle them:

Bacterial infections: About one in six people in the United States get sick from contaminated food each year. The well known E. coli and salmonella bacteria are often the culprits, and symptoms can appear between two to eight days after swallowing the contaminated food.

Most people will develop diarrhea as a result, which is often accompanied by abdominal cramps. The majority of cases will clear up on their own within a week; however, some illnesses can remain for over a week or become severe. The best way to prevent these kinds of bacterial infections is to always wash hands after using the bathroom and handling raw food, cook meats completely, and avoid cross-contamination during food prep by washing all countertops and cutting boards immediately.

Viral Gastroenteritis: This infection is often caused by the rotavirus or norovirus. The symptoms can mimic that of a bacterial infection; however, antibiotics won’t effectively treat this problem. Rest and staying hydrated are the staples of treatment. Just like with bacterial infections, you can avoid viral infections by properly handling food and washing hands whenever appropriate.

Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS): If you experience diarrhea that doesn’t go away, you may have this common medical condition. Along with diarrhea, those with IBS also experience cramping, abdominal pain and bloating. Dietary changes are necessary for treating IBS. This means increasing fiber intake, eliminating carbonated beverages, gluten, and certain carbohydrates. Talk to your gastroenterologist about foods to avoid, as well as other treatment options.

Other causes of diarrhea include celiac disease, diabetes, intestinal diseases, hyperthyroidism, traveler’s diarrhea, and food allergies. For mild cases, many patients find over-the-counter remedies like Pepto-Bismol actually relieves symptoms; however, if you are experiencing prolonged or bloody diarrhea, or diarrhea that is accompanied by a fever, it’s time to call us to schedule an appointment.

By Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates
September 04, 2014
Category: Gastroenterology
Heartburn is common and, in many cases, occasional to rare. While a mild case of heartburn should not raise any red flags, it is still uncomfortable. Fortunately, there are various ways to combat the discomfort.
 

Recognize the Symptoms and Causes of Heartburn

The first step of fighting heartburn is to be able to recognize it. Symptoms include:
  • A burning pain in the chest and abdominal area.
  • Pain that gets worse when you lay down or bend over.
  • Burning that rises from your chest and could be felt as high as the neck.
  • Acidic taste at the back of the throat.
Heartburn is caused by stomach acid coming up the esophagus. The band-like muscle at the bottom of the esophagus, called the Lower Esophageal Sphincter, relaxes when you swallow to let food or drink pass. Sometimes, the muscle can weaken or misfire, allowing stomach acid to come up the esophagus, causing acid reflux, which, in turn, causes heartburn. This is this reason that the burning sensation can be made worse by lying down or bending over. Heartburn can also be triggered by certain foods, such as onions, spicy foods or even chocolate. Being overweight and smoking are also common triggers.
 

Treating Heartburn

Heartburn can be treated in many ways, from herbal remedies to prescription medications.
  • Antacids. One of the most common treatments, which works to take the pain and burning away, but can not repair an already damaged esophagus.
  • Proton-pump Inhibitors. This drug slows down the actual production of stomach acid. While proton-pump inhibitors are longer lasting than antacids, they do not work as fast.
  • Prescription medication. These medications can only be prescribed by a doctor, but are the most powerful option for more serious cases.
  • Herbal remedies. Calcium is the active ingredient in most antacids, and can be taken to prevent heartburn. Milk thistle, lemon balm and even licorice have been known to help heartburn sufferers.
If you experience heartburn three or more times a week, it is time to seek medical help. The gastroenterologists located in Suffolk County, can help you diagnose, treat and manage the heartburn pain that plagues you. He and his team will work closely with you to determine the best plan of action to ensure you leave their office both healthy and happy, with your heartburn under control. Call Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates at (631) 289-0300 today to make an appointment, or schedule one online.
By Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates
August 15, 2014
Category: Gastroenterology

Blood in Stool: What does this mean?

You have just finished passing a bowel movement when you see it -- clay-colored to reddish streaks in your stool. Patients who notice blood in their stools in Suffolk County should not ignore these symptoms -- they can indicate an underlying condition that Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates physicians can likely treat. Blood in Stool
 
Blood in your stool can take on many appearances. For example, you may only see streaks of blood in the toilet, streaks of red on your stool itself or blood on your toilet paper. This blood is not always bright red. Instead, it may be black, dark red or brick-colored. The color can give the gastroenterologists at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates a clue into what could be going on. For example, blood in stool that comes from digestive tract bleeding is often black because stomach acid can cause blood to turn black in appearance.
 

Why Am I Seeing Blood in My Stool?

Multiple reasons exist as to why you could be seeing blood in your stool. These range from something outside or close to your rectum, such as an anal fissure or hemorrhoid, to a cause in your upper digestive tract, such as a peptic ulcer. Other causes could include ulcerative colitis or diverticulosis. As a big concern, blood in your stool can be a symptom of colon cancer.
 
Anyone in Suffolk County who sees blood in his or her stool should seek treatment with the gastroenterologists at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates. While the situation may be a minor concern, each gastroenterologist at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates can work to identify this condition while ruling out more severe conditions, such as colon cancer. An examination is almost always required to identify rectal bleeding causes. The gastroenterologists at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates will also ask you questions about when you first noticed the blood, what it looks like and if you have any other symptoms that could be related to rectal bleeding.
 
Ways the gastroenterologists at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates may attempt to diagnose your rectal bleeding cause, include blood testing to determine if you have low blood levels. A rectal examination may help to identify hemorrhoids. In some instances, the gastroenterologists at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates may recommend diagnostic procedures, such as sigmoidoscopy or colonoscopy to view the inner intestinal lining. This allows the gastroenterologists at Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates to determine if you have diverticulosis pocket, colon polyps or signs of colon cancer present in your digestive tract.
 
If you live in Suffolk County and suspect you or a loved one may have blood in your stool, contact Brookhaven Gastroenterology Associates at (631) 289-0300. If you are experiencing severe or significant bleeding from your rectum, seek emergency medical attention.
March 18, 2013
Category: Uncategorized
Tags: Untagged

We are excited to announce in February we will be beginning implementation of an Electronic Medical Record (EMR).  We have selected eClinicalworks as our platform.  During this time, our staff and physicians will be transitioning to a new system and and there may be unexpected delays while we get the system up and running and appreciate your patience during this time so we may serve you better.  





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