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Section of Gastroenterology

Houston, Texas

The Alkek Building at Baylor College of Medicine
Gastroenterology and Hepatology Section
not shown on screen

The Methodist Hospital Clinical Services

The Methodist Hospital Digestive Disease CenterThe Methodist Hospital Digestive Disease Center and Reflux Center

A tin tube, wax candle, and mirror. Although primitive by today's standards, these basic endoscopic tools gave the eyes of medicine their first chance to peer into the inner sanctum of the living body--without the use of a scalpel. That was in 1806. Basic endoscopic tools

Surviving the initial scoffing and doubt that accompany most great discoveries, endoscopy has now earned its place as one of the most remarkable advances in medicine, especially in the area of gastroenterology.

Rigid tin tubes, candlelight, and mirrors have yielded to flexible fiberoptic scopes and, most recently, "live" video allowing the endoscopic team to view examinations on a color television. And, most importantly, physicians not only diagnose disease, but now actually treat it through the scope.

Blending Excellent Service and Technology

Gastrointestinal endoscopy has flourished over the past decade because of its proven therapeutic benefits. Early cancerous colon polyps, for example, can be removed without surgery. Responding to the heightened demand, The Methodist Hospital expanded its endoscopy services into one of the state's largest comprehensive endoscopy units in 1988. Blending excellent service and technology, this 9,000 square-foot Digestive Disease Center meets the needs of both outpatients and inpatients. Gastrointestinal endoscopic services are offered at one convenient location in Methodist's Smith Tower Building in the Texas Medical Center.historical medical illustration of the digestive tract

Expansive Facilities and Efficient Patient Flow

The center features advanced endoscopy equipment in seven procedure rooms (four are equipped with x-ray) and one motility procedure room. It also includes a 13-bed stretcher holding area, an adjacent recovery area, satellite pharmacy, comfortable 25-chair waiting area, patient admission area, and consultation rooms. Endoscopy Review, a national publication, highlighted Methodist's state-of-the-art endoscopy unit soon after it opened.

photo from an operating room

Outpatients first register for the procedure either by phone or in person at the fifth floor registration desk in Smith Tower. Upon arrival at the hospital, they may opt for valet parking or self-parking in the Smith Tower garage.

Patient escorts are available to accompany patients to the Digestive Disease Center where staff members greet them, assist with admission and procedure preparation, and answer questions. After the procedure, outpatients are taken to the adjacent recovery area and inpatients are returned to their rooms.

A Foundation of Excellence

The Methodist Hospital's reputation as a world-class teaching and research facility draws thousands of patients from around the globe each year. Affiliated with Baylor College of Medicine, Methodist is the nation's largest private non-profit hospital. Our medical professionals treat approximately 35,000 inpatients and conduct 800,000 outpatient procedures annually. The Digestive Disease Center performs more than 7,000 procedures each year.

Even though we treat a large volume of patients, Methodist knows that quality is best defined on an individual basis. Each patient receives excellent care and compassion from our experienced staff of doctors, nurses, and technicians.

Remarkable advances in endoscopy would not be possible without the tireless efforts of those conducting innovative research. As an adjunct to its full range of diagnostic and treatment capabilities, The Digestive Disease Center conducts ongoing research to help shape the future of gastrointestinal medicine. Research activities also give selected patients an opportunity to benefit from new pharmaceutical agents or devices not yet available for commercial use.

Scope of Services

Contact the Experts

Are you particular about the care your patients receive? If so, contact one of our gastrointestinal specialists. If you need help locating a gastrointestinal specialist, please call the Physician Referral Service at 713-790-3599 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. However, if an emergency occurs during off-hours, you can dial the same number and reach a operator who will help locate a gastrointestinal specialist.

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