Digestive System (Gastroenterology)

Diagnostic and treatment services for patients with a wide range of gastrointestinal concerns.

Services

Gastro-intestinal (GI) Clinic

The Gastro-intestinal (GI) Clinic at St. Paul’s provides endoscopic procedures on an outpatient, inpatient and emergency basis. It is supported by gastroenterology and colorectal surgery. The clinic performs 9,000 standard and specialized procedures each year, including ERCP’s (looking at the gallbladder, pancreas and liver), colonoscopies and endoscopies. The GI Clinic is also involved in research in all aspects of gastroenterology. Over the past five years, the clinic has participated in more than 30 international multi-centered trials in endoscopy, inflammatory bowel disease and acid-related disorders.

Surgery

For more information, please visit the St. Paul’s Hospital Colorectal Surgery Centre.

BC Home Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition

British Columbia Home Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition (HPEN) – provides support to patients in British Columbia and the Yukon who have specialized nutrition requirements due to gastrointestinal tract problems.

Outpatient Programs + Clinics

For a list of our outpatient programs and clinics click here.

Research

Gastroenterology is the branch of medicine where the digestive system and its disorders are studied and treated. The Division of Gastroenterology at St. Paul’s is composed of 10 gastroenterologists who are active provincially and nationally: Dr. Lawrence Halparin, clinical professor and division head; Dr. Jack Amar, clinical assistant professor; Dr. Scott Whittaker, clinical assistant professor; Dr. Rob Enns, clinical professor; Dr. Jennifer Telford, clinical associate professor; Dr. Eric Lam, clinical associate professor; Dr. Alnoor Ramji, clinical assistant professor; Dr. Brian Bressler, clinical assistant professor; Dr. Hin Hin Ko, clinical assistant professor; and Dr. Karen Wong, clinical instructor. Dr. Marcus Chin will be moving from Australia in 2013 to join the group.

Research in the Division of Gastroenterology includes both investigator and industry-sponsored studies. The Endoscopy Unit has expanded to 7,000 cases per year including the new technology of endoscopic ultrasound. Some of our highlights include:

  • Dr. Eric Lam and Dr. Jennifer Telford have established the Endoscopy Ultrasound Unit and are actively involved in clinical research projects in this field.
  • Dr. Rob Enns is a leader in the field of capsule endoscopy of the small bowel and management of Barrett’s Esophagus. He has significant clinical research interests extending from obscure gastrointestinal bleeding to inflammatory bowel disease, and remains involved in several multi-centre clinical trials in inflammatory bowel disease and reflux.
  • Dr. Scott Whittaker remains Chairperson of the provincial Home and Hospital TPN Program, Chairperson of the BCMA Nutrition Committee, and a member of the editorial board of Gastroenterology Canada.
  • Dr. Jennifer Telford is the Director of Colon Check, the provincial screening program for colon cancer through the BC Cancer Agency. She is involved in research in colorectal cancer screening and endoscopic biliary stenting.
  • Dr. Brian Bressler is involved in clinical research trials in inflammatory bowel disease and is one of Canada’s leading experts in Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.

Teaching

The division is involved in continuing medical education, including undergraduate teaching and post-graduate teaching of Internal Medicine residents, with 24 residents rotating through the service on a yearly basis and five gastrointestinal fellows. Dr. Alnoor Ramji and Dr. Eric Lam are members of the Post-Graduate Fellowship Training Committee. Dr. Ramji is also chair of the annual St. Paul’s postgraduate course for family physicians.

Liver Disease

Drs. Alnoor Ramji , Hin Hin KO, and Eric Lam are actively involved in investigating and treating liver diseases and are involved in numerous multi-centre trials of treatment of Hepatitis B and C as well as noninvasive methods of assessing degree of liver fibrosis.

Resources

Colon Cancer Screening
If you are a BC man or woman between the ages of 50 to 74, you should get screened for colon cancer. Screening is free for insured BC residents with referral from a family physician. Learn more

Careers

For more information about working at Providence Health Care and for current employment opportunities, please visit our Careers site.

Contact + Location

For more information about our Gastrointestinal program and services, please call the Division of Gastroenterology office. (Note: The office will not be able to supply answers to clinical questions.)

Gastroenterology Associates
770 – 1190 Hornby Street
Vancouver, BC, V6Z 2K5
Telephone: 604-688-6332

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