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In The News
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May 2019. Screening Flexible Sigmoidoscopy vs Colonoscopy For Reduction of Colorectal Cancer Mortality
Featuring: Cynthia Ko, MD, MS
Published by: International Journal of Colorectal Disease
Colonoscopy and flexible sigmoidoscopy are both recommended colorectal cancer (CRC) screening strategies, but their relative effectiveness is unclear. What is the ability of each of these two modalities to reduce CRC mortality?
May 2019. What IBS Is Really Like -- And How To Keep It From Ruining Your Life
Featuring: Shoba Krishnamurthy, MD
Published by: UW Medicine's Right As Rain
There are an estimated 40 million people in the United States who have IBS, many of whom are young women. There are things suffers of IBS can do to learn more about how it affects them, and simple steps that can be taken to stop if from interfering with their lives.
May 2019. Editorial: Predicting Outcomes in Lower GI Bleeding - More Work Ahead
Featuring: Rebecca Kosowicz, MD; Lisa Strate, MD, MPH
Published by: Gastrointestinal Endoscopy
Lower gastrointestinal bleeding is a common symptom presented in the emergency room. However, management approach differs according to clinical presentation and source of bleeding. Triaging patients to the appropriate level of care is not always straightforward. What tools are available to identify risk factors and achieve optimal patient outcomes?
April 2019. Editorial: Benefits of HCV Eradication Beyond The Liver
Featuring: George Ioannou, MD, MS
Published by: Alimentary Pharmacology and Therapeutics
Many extrahepatic complications of HCV have been described, which can cause substantial morbidity, reduced quality of life and high healthcare costs. In order to capture the utility of viral eradication by anti-viral treatments accurately, it is necessary to determine the beneficial effects of SVR in reducing hepatic as well as extrahepatic complications of HCV.
April 2019. A Simple Measure of HCC Burden Predicts Tumor Recurrence After Liver Transplantation
Featuring: Philip Vutien, MD, MS; Kiran Bambha, MD, MSc; George Ioannou, MD, MS; Scott Biggins, MD, MAS
Published by: Liver Transplantation
Risk of recurrent hepatocellular carcinoma (rHCC) after liver transplantation (LT) depends on the pre-LT HCC burden, tumor behavior, and response to locoregional therapy (LRT). In December 2017, LT priority for HCC was expanded to select patients outside the Milan criteria who respond to LRT. A recent study developed and applied the novel recurrent hepatocellular carcinoma–initial, maximum, last classification system to provide and easily interpret assessment of a tumor’s dynamic disease course.
February 2019. Sporadic Colorectal Cancer: Is Surveillance Wasted on the Young?
Featuring: Daniel Bushyhead, MD
Published by: Digestive Diseases and Sciences
The national incidence of colorectal cancer is increasing in people younger than 50 years old. Although diagnostic colonoscopy is detecting more sporadic adenomas in young adults, there are no guidelines for post-polypectomy surveillance. What is the prevalence of sporadic adenomas, subsequent risk of metachronous neoplasia, and what are recommendations for clinical practice?
February 2019. For Whom is HCC Surveillance After SVR Cost Effective?
Featuring: George Ioannou, MD, MS
Published by: Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology
Risk of hepatocellular carcinoma persists after successful antiviral treatment of HCV among patients who develop advanced fibrosis or cirrhosis. Is ongoing screening cost-effective despite the uncertainty of actual HCC risk in these patients?
February 2019. Impact of Angiotensin II Signaling Blockade on Clinical Outcomes in IBD
Featuring: Jeffrey Jacobs, MD
Published by: Digestive Diseases and Sciences
Angiotensin II (AT II), in addition to hormonal effects, has pro-inflammatory properties that may play a role in inflammation in patients with inflammatory bowel disease. Preclinical in vivo studies, as well as translational data from subjects with IBD, further support the role of angiotensin signaling in mucosal inflammation. A recent study sought to investigate clinical outcomes in IBD patients taking an angiotensin-converting-enzyme inhibitors (ACEI) or angiotensin receptor blockers (ARB) in order to test the hypothesis that ACEI and ARB exposure is associated with improved outcomes.
January 2019. Diverticulitis of the Colon: Latest Data and Concepts
Featuring: Lisa Strate, MD, MPH
Published by: Gastroenterology
Diverticular disease, once a rarely diagnosed medical curiosity, is now one of the most common GI disorders among inpatients and outpatients. It was readily attributed to fiber deficiency, surgery and antibiotics became the primary treatments for diverticulitis, and research in the field stagnated. In the past 2 decades, there has been a resurgent interest in diverticular disease, resulting in new data and concepts regarding epidemiology, pathophysiology and treatment.
January 2019. Region’s 1st Hepatitis C Heart-Transplant Recipient Is Cured
Featuring: Renuka Bhattacharya, MD
Published by: UW Medicine Newsroom
UW Medicine is declaring success with the Pacific Northwest’s first heart-transplant recipient to purposely acquire the hepatitis C virus (HCV) from the donor organ and then have the disease eradicated by antiviral medication. Drs. Jason Smith and Renuka Bhattacharya helped formulate UW Medicine's HCV transplant protocol.
January 2019. New AGA Guideline Provides Recommendations for the Treatment of Mild-to-Moderate Ulcerative Colitis
Featuring: Cynthia Ko, MD, MS
Published by: American Gastroenterological Association
Most patients with ulcerative colitis (UC) have mild-to-moderate disease characterized by periods of activity or remission, but practice variations exist in disease management. A new clinical guideline from the American Gastroenterological Association (AGA) published in Gastroenterology, the official journal of AGA, addresses the medical management of these patients, focusing on use of both oral and topical 5-aminosalicylates (5-ASA) medications, rectal corticosteroids and oral budesonide, to promote high-quality care for UC patients.
December 2018. Don't Take My Colonoscopy Away!
Featuring: Rachel Issaka, MD, MAS; John Inadomi, MD
Published by: UW Medicine Newsroom | JAMA
In a recent Michigan survey of 308 veterans – all over age 50 and deemed at normal risk for colorectal cancer – more than one-fourth of respondents strongly objected to losing access to the cancer screening late in life, surprising researchers.
November 2018. Colorectal Cancer Screening: Is Colonoscopy The Best Option?
Featuring: Jason Dominitz, MD, MHS
Published by: Medical Clinics of North America
Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in the United States, but more than a third of age-eligible Americans are not up to date on screening. There are several available screening tests, which may cause primary care providers to ponder - which is the best test?
November 2018. Why Am I Always Bloated?
Featuring: Margaret Eugenio, MD
Published by: Woman's Day
Bloating is a normal part of the digestive process. What may not be normal though, is constantly feeling like your stomach is swollen. If that is the case, there are a few possibilities that may be putting your gut in a rut.
November 2018. Recent Advances in Management of Acalculous Cholecystitis
Featuring: Bryan Balmadrid, MD
Published by: F1000 Research
Acalculous cholecystitis is an uncommon but potentially devastating infection of the gallbladder. The diagnosis can be difficult to make, but early recognition is important. What are the factors that determine the appropriate treatment modality?
November 2018. The Do’s and Don’ts of Social Media: A Guide For Gastroenterologists
Featuring: Christina Surawicz, MD
Published by: American Journal of Gastroenterology
We all know about social media, and may have a love-hate relationship, but it is here to stay. With widespread use of social media in medicine, appropriate application by gastroenterologists can have advantages. What are the benefits and risks of social media, as well as relevance to fellows in training and staff?
October 2018. Population Health Interventions to Improve Colorectal Cancer Screening by Fecal Immunochemical Tests
Featuring: Rachel Issaka, MD, MAS
Published by: Preventive Medicine
There is clear evidence that screening by colonoscopy and stool-based tests is cost-effective and saves lives. However it remains underutilized. Fecal immunochemical test (FIT) use in screening is rapidly increasing. Are there interventions that could improve adherence to FIT-based CRC screening?
October 2018. What are the Benefits of a Sustained Virologic Response to Direct-Acting Antiviral Therapy for HCV Infection?
Featuring: George Ioannou, MD, MS
Published by: Gastroenterology
The effectiveness of direct-acting antivirals (DAAs) in eradicating HCV is firmly established and is one of the greatest triumphs of medical therapeutics in the last 20 years. What remains to be determined is the extent to which DAA-induced sustained virologic response (SVR) leads to short-term and long-term clinical benefits for patients.
October 2018. The Gut Microbiome and Brain Health
Featuring: R. William DePaolo, PhD
Published by: UW Medicine Memory & Brain Wellness Center
Shifts in the composition or function of the microbiome have been implicated in IBD, autism, and blood cancers. Researchers are now discovering that a disrupted microbiome, in certain contexts, may contribute to Alzheimer’s disease and related conditions that cause dementia.

“The role of the microbiome in health and disease is an exciting area at the forefront of science, but the field is in its infancy,” says Dr. William Depaolo, a UW Medicine gastroenterologist and director of the UW Center for Microbiome Sciences & Therapeutics. “I think about the microbiome like a biologist thinks about the deep sea. We know there’s something down there, and we finally have the technology to help us see who’s actually there and how they are influencing our bodies and brains.”
September 2018. Estimating Risk of HCC Post Antiviral Treatment of HCV
Featuring: George Ioannou, MD, MS
Published by: Journal of Hepatology
Most patients with hepatitis C virus, have been treated or will be treated with direct-acting antivirals. It is important that we can model the risk of hepatocellular carcinoma in these patients, so that we develop the optimum screening strategy that avoids unnecessary screening, while adequately screening those at increased risk. Herein, we have developed and validated models that are available as web-based tools that can be used to guide screening strategies.
September 2018. Liver Complications Following Antibody-Drug Conjugate Therapy
Featuring: George McDonald, MD
Published by: Hepatology
The advent of antibody-drug conjugates (ADC), designed to deliver a toxic moiety into tumor cells, has altered the approach to many cancers, particularly hematologic malignancies. However, unexpected toxicity has been seen after ADC therapies, through several potential mechanisms. Liver toxicity, specifically injury to hepatic sinusoids, is a major concern for development of
antibody-drug conjugates.
September 2018. Probiotics’ Effects on the Microbiome Vary Widely
Featuring: Neelendu Dey, MD
Published by: The Scientist
Probotics are a booming business, with sales in the billions of dollars each year and millions of customers in the US alone. Companies claim that the microbial concoctions can help consumers do anything from lose weight to sleep better, but researchers report inconsistent effects on people’s microbiomes.
July 2018. Seattle Metroplitan Magazine's Top Doctors 2018
Featuring: Haritha Avula, MBBS; Scott Lee, MD; W. Michael McDonnell, MD; Elizabeth Morrison, MD; Michael Saunders, MD; Adam Templeton, MD
Published by: Seattle Metropolitan Magazine
Congratulations to UWGI faculty who made Seattle Metroplitan Magazine's 13th annual list of the best health care professionals in the Seattle area, featuring 753 doctors, physician assistants and nurse practictioners in more than 78 specialties.
July 2018. Dr. John Inadomi Honored by the American Health Council for "Best Medicine"
Featuring: John Inadomi, MD
Published by: American Health Council
The American Health Council has honored Dr. John Inadomi “America’s Best Doctor” for his contributions to the gastrointestinal field. Currently a professor of medicine and the Head of the Division of Gastroenterology at the University of Washington School of Medicine, Dr. Inadomi provides educational and medical guidance for patients, students and his peers. While he has held the latter role for over 8 years, Dr. Inadomi has spent nearly 30 years in the healthcare industry expanding his knowledge and skills in the care of patients with gastroenterological disorders, and research in the prevention of gastrointestinal cancers.
July 2018. Esophageal Adenocarcinoma: When DNA Methylation Informs the Treatment
Featuring: William Grady, MD
Published by: Fred Hutch Science Spotlight
Barrett’s esophagus (BE) is an inflammatory condition of the upper gastro-intestinal tract observed as a consequence of gastro-esophageal reflux when metaplastic columnar epithelium replaces the stratified squamous epithelium in the esophagus. BE strongly predisposes to the development of esophageal adenocarcinoma (EAC), the sixth most common cause of cancer death worldwide according to the Mayo Clinic. Dr. Wu, a member of Dr. William Grady's team, said, "EAC at diagnosis is often already at an advanced stage that is not responsive to currently used therapies. Thus, there is an urgent need for the effective identification of optimal treatment strategies for EAC patients.”
July 2018. Recent Advances in Barrett's Esophagus
Featuring: John Inadomi, MD
Published by: Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences
Barrett's esophagus is the only known precursor of esophageal adenocarcinoma, one of the few cancers with increasing incidence in developed countries. This review examines emerging data about the pathogenesis, screening and surveillance strategies, and treatment options for individuals with Barrett's.
July 2018. Screening and Surveillance for Barrett's Esophagus: Is It Cost-Effective?
Featuring: John Inadomi, MD; Nina Saxena, MD
Published by: Digestive Diseases and Sciences
The cost-effectiveness of screening and surveillance for Barrett’s esophagus continues to evolve as the incidence of esophageal adenocarcinoma increases. Screening may be cost-effective in selected high-risk groups.
June 2018. 3 Gut Health Habits That Can Help You Control Your Weight
Featuring: R. William DePaolo, PhD
Published by: O Magazine
You exercise, you control your portions, you limit sweets—but what have you done for your gut bacteria lately? If you think that sounds odd, think again. How cultivating the right bacteria may help keep your weight in check.
June 2018. Heart-Transplant Program Opens Access to HCV-Positive Donors
Featuring: Renuka Bhattacharya, MD
Published by: UW Medicine News Room
UW Medicine’s heart-transplant team this month began giving all of its patients access to suitable donor hearts from decedents who tested positive for the hepatitis C virus. Previously, these organs were available only to patients who already had the virus.
June 2018. New Guidelines for Colorectal Cancer Screening
Featuring: John Inadomi, MD
Published by: KOMO News
You've probably heard about the new recommendations from the American Cancer Society (ACA) that came out last week. ACA now says most people should get screened for colon and rectal cancer starting at age 45, rather than 50. Find out why.
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