It is believed since ages that the secret of good health is a good digestive system. In recent years, with the change in our lifestyles and living patterns, there has been a rise in GI diseases and diseases like IBS, IBD, hepatitis, gallstones and CBD stones are now seen with increasing frequency. Gastroenterology is the branch of medicine which deals with the diseases of the GI tract and the liver. The level of awareness amongst the general population about the diseases of the GI tract is still very low and unlike heart disease they do not seek medical attention immediately and often delay treatment, at times, leading to disastrous consequences.
Batra Gastro Sciences Centre was set up in 2004 with the aim to provide comprehensive state-of- the-art care in Gastroenterology under one roof. It has a travelled a long way since then and the following specialties have come up within the Centre: Gastroenterology and Endoscopy, Hepatology, GI surgery, Minimal Access Surgery, Interventional Radiology and GI Oncology. It now attracts a large number of referrals from both within the country as well as abroad. The primary thrust area of the Centre is Hepatology and GI oncology. The centre has components of both service as well as research.
Batra Gastro Sciences Centre is situated in Block A of the hospital building; it consists of the OPD Chambers and the Endoscopy Suite. The Wards, ICU and other facilities are in common with the hospital facilities. The team also consists of consultants, residents, technicians and nurses, which are all experienced in managing Gastrointestinal and Digestive diseases.
The Endoscopy room consists of three functional Endoscopy suites. Endoscopy deals with a large patient load and upto 20-25 procedures are being done every day. Apart from Diagnostic Endoscopy (Esophagoduodenoscopy and Colonoscopy) a number of therapeutic procedures are being done and they include: Dilatation, Banding, Sclerotherapy, Polypectomy, Metal Stent Placement (Esophageal, Antral, Colonic and Biliary). Nearly 300 ERCP’s are being performed every year. CBD stone extraction is the main indication for ERCP. Plastic as well as metal stent placement for palliation of Malignant CBD Obstruction is also done routinely. Double Balloon Enteroscopies and Capsule Enteroscopies are being done for evaluation of small bowel Endoscopic Ultrasound guided theraupetic as well as diagnostic procedures are being done. This is the one of the only private centers in the city which has all the GI diagnostic facilities under one roof.
Liver Diseases is a major area of interest for the Centre. We run a Liver Clinic twice a week (Wednesday, Saturday). There are facilities for the management of patients with Hepatitis B and C. The complete therapeutic Armamentarium for the diagnosis and the management of Liver Cancer (Triple phase CT, Radiofrequency ablation, TACE) are all available at the Centre. Patients with G I bleeding and Acute Liver Failure are treated in the Medical ICU. There is a ventilator for every bed and intensive monitoring of these patients can be done. The availability of blood is never a constraint as the Hospital has its own blood bank and there is the Rotary blood bank located in the vicinity, which functions as a reserve blood bank in the rare case , when the needs are not met by our own blood bank.
Our Centre is one of the few hospitals in the city which has a fully developed G I surgery unit. There is a large OT complex with 10 functional and fully equipped operation theatres. A large number of extensive surgeries are being performed. Procedures like, Radical Esophagectomy (for Esophageal cancer), Whipples operation (For pancreatic cancer), Radical Colectomy (for colon cancer), Surgery for pancreatitis (Pancreatic necrosectomy), pseudocyt drainage, major liver resections and all G.I. Oncological surgical procedures are being routinely performed with significantly low morbidity and mortality. The Centre also has a varied experience in providing Laparoscopic procedures for treatment and palliation of cancer of Oesophagus, Colon Rectum, Liver, Gallbladder and the Pancreas. Other advanced Laparoscopic Procedures like Laparoscopic Surgery for Morbid Obesity, Laparoscopic Surgery for Acute Pancreatitis and its complications i.e Lap Necrosectomy, Lap Pseudocyst drainage etc, Laparoscopic Surgery for Reflux and Achalasia (Lap Fundoplication and Hellers) are being routinely performed at the center.
One of the newer modalities which have come for the management of diseases of the GI tract is Interventional Radiology. This specialty involves accessing the body under the guidance of Imaging eg CT, ultrasound or fluoroscopy. As a result a number of diseases which earlier needed surgical management can now be cured with the use of these techniques. They include: Catheter drainage of liver abscess, percutaneous transhepatic biliary catheter drainage, angiography for patients with active bleeding and a number of other procedures in patients of Liver cancers.
To take forward our commitment to education, we have an active DNB Gastroenterology programme. Under which the resident doctors are trained with a structured training programme to impart training in Gastroenterology and Endoscopy. We also have an Observership Programme in Gastroenterology and Endoscopy. The Centre also hosts 2 Continued Medical Education (CME) programmes every year on GI diseases. The target audience for these is the local general and family physicians. The aim of these CME’s is to create a greater awareness on GI and liver diseases. In addition the centre also organizes regular camps and lectures in nearby localities as well as regions where the healthcare facilities are scarce. The Center has evolved as a one stop place for diagnosis and management of all complex diseases of the Liver, Biliary, Pancreas and the Gastrointestinal Tract.