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The gastroenterology department at Dayton Children’s is skilled at providing expert care for children diagnosed with disorders of the gastrointestinal tract.
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About 1 in every 100 people in the United States has celiac disease, an intolerance to gluten, the main protein found in wheat. When someone with celiac disease eats food that contains gluten, it creates a toxic reaction that causes damage to the small intestine and doesn’t allow food to be properly absorbed.
If your child is diagnosed with celiac disease they will be paired with a physician and a dietitian specialized in treating children with this disorder. The dietitian will work with both the parent and the child on implementing a new gluten-free lifestyle.
inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) including Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis
Inflammatory bowel disease (which is not the same thing as irritable bowel syndrome, or IBS) refers to chronic diseases that cause inflammation of the intestines: ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease. Up to 1 million Americans are thought to have IBD, which occurs most often in those ages 15 to 30, but can affect younger kids and older people.
Inflammatory bowel disease can be hard to diagnose, even if the bowel has been damaged over many years. And IBD symptoms often resemble those of other conditions, which may make it difficult for doctors to diagnose.
If IBD is suspected in your child, our specialists will use a variety of tests to make a diagnosis.
If your child is diagnosed with IBD our physicians will work with you to prescribe the appropriate therapy to help relieve the symptoms.
Dayton Children’s is also part of the ImproveCareNow network. ImproveCareNow is a network of care centers with clinicians, researchers, patients, families and improvers working together to transform the health, care and cost for children and youth with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.
By being involved with ImproveCareNow, our team has seen remission rates for IBD increase from 60 to 80 percent in Dayton area children and teens without new medications or scientific breakthroughs. This means that 40 fewer families are receiving steroids medications that have multiple side effects, requiring major bowel surgeries, or being hospitalized due to their IBD diagnosis.
Children with gastrointestinal motility disorders suffer from symptoms such as vomiting, chronic abdominal pain, constipation, diarrhea, abdominal distension, and difficulty swallowing.
At Dayton Children’s, our motility program is directed by Dr. Sandra S. Wright. Dr. Wright is among a small group of pediatric specialists nationwide trained in treating pediatric patients with motility disorders.
The Aerodigestive Clinic at Dayton Children’s is designed for chronically ill children with disorders of the upper airway, lungs and upper digestive tract, including sleep and feeding problems. Patients come to our center to meet with multiple specialists, including ENT, a pulmonologist and gastroenterologist. By evaluating your child’s condition together, the physicians can develop an understanding of his or her overall health and what kind of therapy is needed. This coordination of care is essential to your child’s well-being, since children who come to the center often have more than one disorder.