Finding the right doctor for a child with IBD

  • IBD is likely something that most pediatricians have seen at some point.  That said, a pediatric GI is a specialist that has a lot more experience in dealing with GI diseases.  A pediatric GI will know more cutting edge treatments or better tests to help manage your child’s condition.  Most pediatricians will work well with a pediatric GI to provide your child with the best care possible.

    A pediatric GI is also different from a regular (adult) GI.  Whenever possible it is my (personal opinion) that a pediatric GI is best when you have a child with something like IBD.  Children are not just “little adults” and there are concerns that have to be addressed in children with IBD that are not issues for adults with the disease.  Medication doses and even what medications can be used are vastly different in children.  Making sure you have a specialist familiar with all of those issues is very important.

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    An illness like IBD requires frequent communication with your child’s physician and frequent visits.  If you can’t communicate with the physician not only will it make visits more difficult but it can also lessen the quality of your child’s care.  If the doctor completely brushes you off or if you feel uncomfortable communicating with your child’s physician then it may be time to find a new doctor that you can communicate with.  

    Sometimes the doctor is wonderful but the office staff is rude or inefficient.  If that is the case then you may want to broach the subject with your child’s doctor or the office manager and give them a chance to handle the problem.  If it persists then, again, it may be time to think about finding a new physician.

    While some of this may seem harsh it is important to remember that you are hiring these people to care for your child’s health.  There are wonderful doctors out there and I wish you the best in finding one suited to your child.

Published On: December 20, 2012