New guideline warns physicians about risks of some supplements

The American College of Gastroenterology released a new guideline this week warning physicians about the risks of supplements and how to counsel patients about their use. Most patients recover after going off the drugs or supplements with proper medical care that was outlined in the guidelines, but some may go into permanent liver failure that requires a liver transplant to treat. Boston Globe (6/19/14)

Full Story

Herbal Remedies, Common OTC Medications Can Hurt the Liver

Many non-prescription and herbal medications can damage the liver, researchers warn. The American College of Gastroenterology just released guidelines on managing idiosyncratic drug-induced liver injury (DILI). Daily RX (6/17/14)

Full Story

Heartburn meds not working? You might be taking them wrong

If you take over-the-counter remedies to deal with your heartburn woes on a regular basis, and the medication doesn’t seem to be working, this might be why: You’re probably not taking them the way you’re supposed to, according to a study conducted by researchers at MetroHealth Medical Center.

The study, published Wednesday in the American Journal of Gastroenterology,  found that 61 percent aren’t getting the full benefit of the drugs because they’re not taking them the right way – right before a meal, with that first meal being breakfast. (6/6/14)

Full Story

5 Gastroenterologists on Injecting Life into Endoscopy Center Profitability

Can endoscopy centers remain successful in the current healthcare environment? Five gastroenterologists share their thoughts on the biggest challenges and opportunities for increasing GI-driven center profitability. Becker’s ASC (6/3/14)

Full Story

First-Time Colon Cancer Screening May Be Beneficial for Elderly

Colonoscopies in certain elderly people who’ve never been screened could be a cost-effective way to improve their health while extending their lives a bit. HealthDay (6/3/14)

Full Story

ABIM Says Most Gastroenterologists Enrolled in MOC

The American Board of Internal Medicine said its maintenance of certification figures set a new record with almost 150,000 physicians enrolled. The data show 77% of physicians with at least one time-limited certification earned after 1990 have enrolled, including 83% of gastroenterologists. Healio (free registration) (5/8/14)

ACG note: The American College of Gastroenterology (ACG) wants to do everything we can to make ABIM’s MOC process simple for you to navigate. Learn about the changes and ACG’s live and online resources to help you earn MOC points.

Full Story

Medicare Reverses Denial Of Costly Treatment For Hepatitis C Patient

Walter Bianco, an Arizona man denied access to new drugs to cure his hepatitis C infection, will get the costly medications after all.
After Kaiser Health News and NPR described his plight in a story that aired Monday, federal Medicare officials said they would look into the case. Bianco’s appeal of an earlier denial had been rejected by WellCare, a private insurer that contracts with the federal program to provide drug coverage. The insurer rejected coverage saying the combined use of the costly new drugs has not yet been approved by the Food and Drug Administration — even though two doctors’ groups had recommended the protocol in cases like Bianco’s. Washington Post (05/16/14)

Full Story

National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month: Q&A With ACG President Dr. Harry Sarles

American College of Gastroenterology President Harry E. Sarles Jr., MD, FACG, answers questions about colorectal cancer awareness and what the ACG is doing to improve awareness and screening rates during this National Colon Cancer Awareness Month. Becker’s ASC (3/10)

Full Story

7 Gastroenterologists on Benchmarking & Colonoscopy Quality

Seven gastroenterologists from across the United States share how they are using benchmarking to improve colonoscopy quality. Includes: GIQuIC President Dr. Irving M. Pike. Beckers ASC (3/28/14)

Full Story

Routine colonoscopy screenings cut risk of colon cancer

Colon cancer is the third most-common cancer diagnosis in the United States. If it goes undetected for too long, it can be a killer.

“We are talking about 150,000 people who will develop colon cancer this year, and 50,000 are going to die from it,” says Dr. Arnold Levy, the president and CEO of Capital Digestive Care.

Levy says a colonoscopy is the gold standard among cancer tests. It is a terrific diagnostic tool and a measure of prevention. During the procedure, doctors can detect and remove polyps — benign growths on the wall of the colon that can become a breeding ground for cancer. WTOP (3/7/14)

Full Story