Driscoll Family Digestive Health Center (2023)


  • About us
  • health information
  • Our team

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what we do

The Driscoll Family Digestive Health Center is the leading center for digestive health disorders in Canada. We have clinics located at Toronto General Hospital and Toronto Western Hospital. We care for a diverse population with various complex digestive conditions. We are committed to providing excellent patient-centered care, outstanding education and training, access to transformative technology, and innovative research to align with UHN's vision of A Healthier World.

We are a multidisciplinary team comprised of experienced gastroenterologists, nurses, and registered dietitians. We collaborate to provide comprehensive care for patients with complex digestive disorders, including: gastrointestinal (GI) cancers, irritable bowel syndrome, celiac disease, gastroesophageal reflux, GI motility and functional disorders, parenteral nutritional support, inflammatory bowel diseases, and advanced endoscopy.

Our goal is to educate patients about their condition, empower them to become active participants in their care, and learn how to manage their condition alongside our multidisciplinary team of experts.

tests and services

  • Endoscopy procedures:
    • gastroscopy
    • colonoscopy
    • sigmoidoscopia flexible
    • Endoscopic Ultrasound (EUS) – TGH
  • Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP)
  • Wireless Small Intestinal Capsule Endoscopy (PillCam)
  • Ambulatory motility clinic
    • high resolution esophageal manometry
    • ambulatory esophageal reflux test (pH and impedance)
    • anorectal manometry study
  • Care and management of home parenteral nutrition
  • pancreatic cyst clinic
  • general gastroenterology clinic
  • GI Registered Dietitian Clinics

How to prepare

If you are not feeling well, please do not come to the hospital and contact the doctor's office to reschedule your appointment.

Always bring a valid Ontario health card to ALL your appointments. Bring a list of all current medications (prescription, over-the-counter, and natural/herbal products) or medications in their original containers. Talk to your pharmacist for help making a list, if needed.

For first appointments, please arrive 15 minutes prior to your appointment time to complete a patient intake questionnaire.

learn more aboutwhat can you expectwhen you have an appointment at the clinic.

Materials and resources to help you

Patient and Family Education Program ResourcesDriscoll Family Digestive Health Center (1)

*These materials are also available atother languages.

Information of Our Clinic

  • Patient Information for Esophageal Manometry
  • Instructions to the patient on anorectal manometry

Visit our Health Information section to find dedicated resources to help you understand your condition.Find the informationyou are looking for.

Meet our team

Driscoll Family Digestive Health Center (2)

Toronto Western Hospital Clinic


  • Dr. Louis Liu– Chief, Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology
  • Dr. Maria Cino
  • Dr. Herbert Gaisano
  • Dr. Pablo James
  • Dr. Thurarshen Jeyalingam
  • Dra. Colleen Parker
  • Dr. Yvonne Tse
  • Miss Tandon hair
  • Dr. Alexa N. Sasson


  • Jocelyn De Romana – Nursing Manager
  • Inas Mumin – Patient Care Coordinator
  • Julie Vicencio – Clinical Nursing Coordinator
  • Stanley Henry – Motility Nurse
  • Joyce Reardon – Clinical Nurse Specialist – Wound Care and Enterostomal Therapy
  • Alexis Truax – Clinical Nurse Practitioner – Wound Care and Enterostomal Therapy


  • Laura Bushey

Toronto General Hospital Clinic


  • Dra. Johan Allard
  • Dr. Flavio Habal
  • Dr. Pablo James
  • Dr. Peter Rossos
  • Dr. Esteban Wolman


  • Ina Cherepaha-Kantorovich – Nursing Manager
  • Laura Tombolini – Clinical Nurse
  • Debra Johnston – Stoma Nurse
  • Leslie Heath - Stoma Nurse
  • Laura Feniak – Ostomy Nurse
  • Stephanie Tiffin – TPN Team, Clinical Nurse Specialist
  • Celeste Arca – TPN Team, Clinical Nurse Coordinator
  • Stanley Henry – Motility Nurse
  • Amanda Zakrzewski – Motility Nurse


  • Ann MacGilivray – TPN Team, Registered Dietitian


  • Patty Kim – TPN Team, Pharmacist
  • Clem Yuen – TPN Team, Pharmacist


  • Karla Krough Carrasco Jensen – Clinical Coordinator
  • Anny Bia - Reception administrative assistant
  • Viviana Zalazar - Front Desk Administrative Assistant

What to expect during your appointment

what to expect

You will be contacted with information about your first appointment.

What Brig

Please bring the following to your appointment. Not all of these items may be needed for your appointment. Our clinic or your referring doctor will tell you what to bring.

  • Your referring doctor may have given you aCD or DVD of previous imaging results(such as x-rays, CT scans, or MRIs). If so, it is very important that you bring this CD or DVD with you.
  • List of all medicationsyou are taking, including prescription drugs, over-the-counter drugs, vitamin or mineral supplements, and herbal remedies.
  • Medications you must take during the day.Also bring any medical equipment you use.
  • notes on anychanges in your conditionsince your last visit.
  • Atrusted friend or relativewho can provide emotional support and help you.
  • AList of doctors and hospitalsyou have seen in the past that they may have information about your treatment.
  • Alist of questionsto help you remember everything you want to ask

When you arrive

Please arrive 15 minutes before your appointment.

When you arrive, you will check in with the receptionist. You will need your health card (OHIP card) to register. If you do not have an OHIP card, please bring another form of government-issued photo identification, such as a driver's license or passport.

You may be given a Health Equity Measurement Questionnaire to complete. This form contains questions about your background. We collect this information to find out who we serve and what unique needs you may have. The form is voluntary and you can choose to "prefer not to answer" to any or all of the questions. However, the information you choose to give us will help us improve the quality of care for you and others.

How long will your appointment last?

First appointments take longer than follow-up appointments. Your first appointment may take 2 hours or more. Follow-up appointments usually last 15 to 30 minutes. We do our best to be on time, but sometimes unforeseen circumstances can delay your appointment.

Before you leave

At the end of your first appointment, the nurse or doctor will give you a list of contacts for your health care team. If you don't get a contact list, feel free to ask for one.

After each appointment, a member of your health care team will tell you about your next visit. Make sure you understand what will happen next. For example, know the time and place of your next visit or if someone will call you with this information.

If you're not sure what your next steps are, don't be afraid to ask a member of your team. We are here to help you.

About phone calls

We understand that reaching us by phone can sometimes be difficult. Often our phone lines are busy or transferred to the message center so our staff can prepare for clinic visits or help other patients. We do our best to return your call within 24 hours. Our staff will attempt to contact you 2 times. If we are unable to reach you directly, you may need to call us again.

quick links

go back up


What happens when you are referred to a gastroenterologist? ›

At your first appointment, your gastroenterologist will speak with you about your medical history, symptoms, and any recent treatments you've had. Depending on your age, they may recommend certain preventative treatments, such as a colonoscopy, which can help prevent colorectal cancer.

How much does a gastroenterologist consultation cost? ›

On average, visits with your gastroenterologist cost $381 without health insurance.

Why would I be referred to a gastroenterology? ›

If you have unexplained or frequent digestive issues, such as abdominal discomfort or changes to your bowel habits, someone's probably told you to see a gastroenterologist, also sometimes referred to as a GI doctor.

What is the best gastroenterology hospital in Canada? ›

The Driscoll Family Digestive Health Centre is the leading centre for digestive health disorders in Canada. We have clinics located at Toronto General Hospital and Toronto Western Hospital.

What are the 5 diseases of the digestive system? ›

5 Common Conditions That Affect Digestive Function
  • Gastrointestinal Reflux Disease (GERD) Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) occurs when stomach acid frequently flows back into your esophagus. ...
  • Celiac Disease. ...
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) ...
  • Ulcerative Colitis. ...
  • Crohn's Disease.
Apr 20, 2022

What are the most common signs and symptoms of gastrointestinal disorders? ›

Some of the most common GI symptoms include
  • Constipation.
  • Diarrhea.
  • Nausea.
  • Vomiting.
  • Indigestion/heartburn.
  • Bloating/gas.
  • Blood in stool.
  • Pain.
Nov 16, 2021

Which disease might you have if you were seeing a gastroenterologist? ›

The most common conditions, diseases, and disorders diagnosed and treated by gastroenterologists include: Cancer (Gastrointestinal, Liver, Pancreatic, Colorectal) Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) Celiac Disease.

How do gastroenterologists diagnose? ›

A gastroenterologist may begin by physically examining you. They may feel and listen to your abdominal organs from the outside, or insert a finger into your rectum. They may order follow-up tests, such as blood tests, poop tests or imaging tests like GI X-ray exams that take pictures of your organs from the outside.

What organs does gastroenterology cover? ›

Gastroenterology is the study of the normal function and diseases of the esophagus, stomach, small intestine, colon and rectum, pancreas, gallbladder, bile ducts and liver.

Who is the best rated gastroenterologist in the US? ›

Top ranked

Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, has been recognized as the best gastroenterology and GI surgery hospital in the nation by U.S. News & World Report in every year since, 1990 when the rankings were first established.

What state is best for gastroenterology? ›

Best states for gastroenterologists to live, work in 2022
  • Alaska.
  • Wyoming.
  • Wisconsin.
  • Maine.
  • North Dakota.
  • Washington.
  • New Hampshire.
  • Minnesota.
May 19, 2022

What hospital has the best GI doctors? ›

Note: Some hospital rankings were tied based on their scores.
  • Mayo Clinic (Rochester, Minn.)
  • Cedar-Sinai Medical Center (Los Angeles)
  • UCLA Medical Center (Los Angeles)
  • Cleveland Clinic.
  • NYU Langone Hospitals (New York City)
  • Keck Medical Center of USC (Los Angeles)
  • Northwestern Memorial Hospital (Chicago)
Jul 26, 2022

How often should you see a gastroenterologist? ›

How Often You Should Visit Each Doctor
DoctorHow Often to Visit
Gastroenterologist1 time/ 10 years if you're over 50
Cardiologist1 time/ 2-4 years if you're over 20
Dentist2 times/year
4 more rows
Aug 9, 2021

What is the difference between a gastroenterologist and a gastrointestinal doctor? ›

Gastrointestinal describes the digestive organs as a full. Whereas gastroenterologist, is that the doctor specializing within the field of gastroenterology. A gastroenterologist has the distinctive qualifications to properly determine problems within the GI tract, and conduct procedures such as a lower GI endoscopy.

How does a gastroenterologist look at your stomach? ›

An upper gastrointestinal (or GI) endoscopy is a test that allows your doctor to look at the inside of your esophagus, stomach, and the first part of your small intestine, called the duodenum. The esophagus is the tube that carries food to your stomach. The doctor uses a thin, lighted tube that bends.

What foods to avoid if you have gastrointestinal problems? ›

Some people with chronic stomach discomfort are more sensitive to certain foods like dairy, spicy foods, soda, fried foods or alcohol. These foods can relax the muscle that keeps food from traveling backward, increase stomach acid production or keep the stomach full for too long.

What are 4 clinical signs of gastrointestinal disease? ›

Symptoms include blood on or mixed in with the stool, a change in normal bowel habits, narrowing of the stool, abdominal pain, weight loss, or constant tiredness.

What are 3 digestive problems a person might have? ›

Some common problems include heartburn, cancer, irritable bowel syndrome, and lactose intolerance. Other digestive diseases include: Gallstones, cholecystitis, and cholangitis. Rectal problems, such as anal fissure, hemorrhoids, proctitis, and rectal prolapse.

What is the most commonly diagnosed GI disorder? ›

IBS is the most common disease diagnosed by gastroenterologists and one of the most common disorders seen by primary care physicians.

What digestive problems can anxiety cause? ›

Common stress-related gut symptoms and conditions include:
  • indigestion.
  • stomach cramps.
  • diarrhea.
  • constipation.
  • loss of appetite.
  • unnatural hunger.
  • nausea.
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
Jul 19, 2018

How can I fix my digestive problems naturally? ›

12 Ways to Improve your Digestive Health
  1. Eat fruits and vegetables. ...
  2. Choose whole grains and nuts. ...
  3. Limit red and processed meats. ...
  4. Limit added sugars. ...
  5. Cook healthier. ...
  6. Eat foods with probiotics. ...
  7. Stay Hydrated. ...
  8. Exercise Regularly.
Nov 17, 2021

What are two common disorders of the gastrointestinal system? ›

Common digestive disorders include gastroesophageal reflux disease, cancer, irritable bowel syndrome, lactose intolerance and hiatal hernia. The most common symptoms of digestive disorders include bleeding, bloating, constipation, diarrhea, heartburn, pain, nausea and vomiting.

What are life threatening gastrointestinal diseases? ›

Some digestive diseases can be life-threatening, especially if left untreated. These include inflammatory bowel disease, cirrhosis, gastrointestinal cancers, hepatitis, blocked flow of blood to the intestines, and perforated intestines or stomach.

Can a blood test detect digestive problems? ›

Blood tests can show levels of specific substances in the blood. Digestive issues for which blood tests support a diagnosis include Celiac disease, inflammatory bowel diseases (Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis), stomach ulcers, stomach cancer and food allergies.

What is the name of the blood test for the stomach? ›

GastroPanel test in screening of the risk conditions for gastric cancer.

How does a gastroenterologist check for IBS? ›

There's no test to definitively diagnose IBS . Your health care provider is likely to start with a complete medical history, physical exam and tests to rule out other conditions, such as celiac disease and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).

How does a gastroenterologist check your liver? ›

Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP).

This is a procedure that helps diagnose and treat problems in the liver, gallbladder, bile ducts, and pancreas. It uses X-rays and a long, flexible, lighted tube (endoscope). The scope is put into your mouth and throat.

Do gastroenterologists look at liver? ›

Both a hepatologist and a gastroenterologist can help diagnose and treat liver disease. Chronic liver diseases are on the rise, as is liver cancer.

What kind of surgeries do gastroenterologists perform? ›

In This Section
  • Gastrointestinal Cancer Surgery.
  • Hernia Surgery & Repair.
  • Esophagus and Foregut (Upper GI) Surgery.
  • Gallbladder Surgery.
  • Liver and Bile Duct Surgery.
  • Pancreas Surgery.

What is the best hospital in the country for gastroenterology? ›

  • Mayo Clinic. 507-516-3231. ...
  • Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. Los Angeles, CA 90048-1865. ...
  • UCLA Medical Center. Los Angeles, CA 90095-8358. ...
  • Cleveland Clinic. Cleveland, OH 44195-5108. ...
  • NYU Langone Hospitals. 1-573-273-4443. ...
  • Keck Medical Center of USC. ...
  • Northwestern Medicine-Northwestern Memorial Hospital. ...
  • Houston Methodist Hospital.

Who is the most famous gastroenterologist? ›

Top 10 Gastroenterologist in India
  • Dr. Avnish Seth. Gastroenterologist. ...
  • Dr. Arvind Khurana. Medical Gastroenterologist. ...
  • Dr. Subhash Gupta. Surgical Gastroenterologist. ...
  • Dr. Vivek Raj. Medical Gastroenterologist. ...
  • Dr. Debasish Banerjee. Medical Gastroenterologist. ...
  • Dr. Abhijit Thakur. ...
  • Dr. Pankaj Dhawan. ...
  • Dr. Nilesh Doctor.

Do gastroenterologists help with diet? ›

This is a doctor who specializes in problems of the digestive system. Unlike a registered dietician-nutritionist, a gastroenterologist can prescribe drugs. They also can recommend lifestyle changes and offer guidance on how to change your diet.

How much do gastroenterologists make in us? ›

How much does a Gastroenterologist make? The national average salary for a Gastroenterologist is $1,71,737 in United States. Filter by location to see Gastroenterologist salaries in your area.

Where do gastroenterologists make the most money? ›

What Is the Average Gastroenterologist Salary by State
StateAnnual SalaryWeekly Pay
South Dakota$314,598$6,049
46 more rows

What is the largest gastroenterology group in the US? ›

The largest, physician-led GI network in the US. GI Alliance is dedicated to exceptional care, positive outcomes, and patient satisfaction. With comprehensive gastrointestinal care, GI Alliance operates its +150 centers in 6 states.

What is the highest degree in gastroenterology? ›

Gastroenterologists must earn a Bachelor of Science degree, followed by a Doctor of Medicine (M.D.) or a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (D.O.) degree. It takes about eight years to complete undergraduate study and medical school.

What is an upper GI Dr called? ›

A specialist in diseases of the digestive system (gastroenterologist) uses an endoscopy to diagnose and sometimes treat conditions that affect the upper part of the digestive system.

Does gastroenterologist treat hemorrhoids? ›

Gastroenterologists can provides non-surgical treatments like hemorrhoid banding as well as procedures such as an endoscopy and interpret the results. If a patient suspects they suffer from hemorrhoids, a gastroenterologist can diagnose them and recommend treatment options based on their severity.

What are signs you need to see a gastroenterologist? ›

Experiencing abnormal bowel movements, rectal bleeding, frequent heartburn, abdominal pain or bloating, peptic ulcers, jaundice, dysphagia, unexplained weight loss, or reaching the age of 45 are signs you may need to see a gastroenterologist.

What diseases can be detected by an endoscopy? ›

Upper GI endoscopy can be used to identify many different diseases:
  • gastroesophageal reflux disease.
  • ulcers.
  • cancer link.
  • inflammation, or swelling.
  • precancerous abnormalities such as Barrett's esophagus.
  • celiac disease.
  • strictures or narrowing of the esophagus.
  • blockages.

What are the benefits of seeing a gastroenterologist? ›

Appointments with the gastroenterologist also help you manage chronic diseases and conditions, including:
  • Irritable bowel syndrome.
  • Hepatitis.
  • Gastroesophageal reflux disorder (GERD)
  • Ulcers.
  • Gallbladder disease.
  • Pancreatitis.
  • Inflammatory bowel disease.
  • Celiac disease.
Apr 12, 2022

Which test is best for gastroenterology? ›

Standard imaging tests for gastric conditions include upper gastrointestinal series (UGI), ultrasounds, MRIs, CT scans and X-rays. For an even clearer picture of the gastrointestinal tract, a barium swallow or barium enema may be used in conjunction with an X-ray.

What is the difference between a gastrologist and a gastroenterologist? ›

Practically, there is no difference between the two specialists since one (gastrologist) is only a commonly adapted word of a gastroenterologist.

What are the signs of bowel problems? ›

  • Diarrhea.
  • Fatigue.
  • Abdominal pain and cramping.
  • Blood in your stool.
  • Reduced appetite.
  • Unintended weight loss.

What are red flags for endoscopy? ›

Red flag symptoms include dysphagia, iron deficiency anaemia, other nutritional anaemia, abnormal weight loss, anorexia, early satiety, personal or family history of cancer of the digestive system, and development of peptic ulcer disease in the previous 12 months.

Are you put to sleep for an endoscopy? ›

Options range from no anesthesia or sedation at all to general anesthesia, but for upper endoscopies, moderate or deep sedation is most common. The anesthetics that may be used to minimize pain and discomfort and reduce anxiety include propofol, benzodiazepines, and opioids.

How long are you asleep for an endoscopy? ›

During the Endoscopy

At this point, if you are receiving sedation, you will start to be sleepy and will most likely remain asleep throughout the procedure, which generally takes about 10 to 20 minutes.

What questions should you ask a gastroenterologist? ›

Questions to Ask Your Gastroenterologist
  • Will I need any more tests?
  • What are the usual treatments for my condition?
  • Will I need a colonoscopy or endoscopy?
  • What do I do if I have a symptom flare-up before I see you again?
  • What are the signs of a serious complication?
Mar 16, 2023

What are the 2 most common tests for GI function? ›

Common GI exams include: Barium Swallow Test (Esophagram): An examination of the esophagus as it swallows. (Approximate time: one hour.) Upper GI Series: An examination of the esophagus, stomach and duodenum (upper small intestine) as they digest.

How do I prepare for a gastroenterology test? ›

Your stomach must be empty. Before the test, you should have nothing to eat or drink after midnight, except a small amount (6 ounces) of clear liquids up to three hours before the test. Consult with your doctor regarding any changes in your medications on the day of the test.


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