Colorectal and gallbladder care in Plantation

The highly trained gastroenterologists, also called GI doctors, at Westside Regional Medical Center work closely with general surgeons to treat gastrointestinal tract disorders, including colon, rectal and gallbladder conditions.

Westside Regional was the second facility in Florida—and only the sixth in the country—to be recognized as a Joint Commission Colorectal Center of Excellence.

For more information about our gastroenterology services, call our Consult-A-Nurse® line at any time at (954) 370-5585.

Colon and rectal conditions we treat

We specialize in comprehensive treatment of the following colorectal conditions:

  • Colorectal cancer
  • Hemorrhoids
  • Constipation
  • Diverticulitis
  • Anal fissures and fistulas
  • Fecal incontinence
  • Colon polyps
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Ulcerative colitis
  • Ostomy care
  • Rectal bleeding
  • Rectal prolapse
  • Rectocele

Colorectal cancer

Colorectal cancer, also commonly called colon cancer, develops in the colon or the rectum and is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in the U.S., according to the American Cancer Society.

Colorectal cancer develops from polyps, or growths, on the inner lining within the colon or rectum, though few of these polyps are cancerous. However, if cells within these polyps begin to grow abnormally over a period of time (normally several years), they can become cancerous.

Colon cancer is highly treatable and, with early detection and treatment, can result in much higher survival rates. Our cancer specialists in our oncology program are able to provide regular colon cancer screenings and help you take appropriate measures to change risk factors within your control.

In addition, should you be faced with this challenging diagnosis, we have a nurse navigator who can help guide you through the process of exploring treatment options. Our navigator can be reached at (954) 329-7162. or Luz.Morales@sarahcannon.com

Colon cancer screening

The most common colorectal cancer screening method is a colonoscopy, which involves inserting a thin, flexible tube into the rectum. During this procedure, your doctor uses a tiny camera to view the inside of the colon.

The purpose of these tests is to find and treat cancer early. With rates of colon and rectal cancers on the rise in younger adults, the American Cancer Society now recommends that adults age 45 years and older begin regular colon cancer screenings. Talk with your doctor to find the right test for you.

Colon cancer risk factors

Some of the factors that can put you at high risk of colorectal cancer include:

  • Obesity
  • Lack of physical activity
  • Diets high in red meats and/or processed meats
  • Smoking
  • Heavy alcohol use
  • Being 50 years and older
  • Personal or family history of colorectal cancer, colorectal polyps, inflammatory bowel disease
  • Personal history of Type 2 diabetes, Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis
  • Hereditary colorectal syndromes, like Lynch syndrome

Colorectal surgery

The experienced colon and rectal surgeons at Westside Regional provide a full range of surgical services to treat disorders such as colon and rectal cancer, inflammatory bowel disease and irritable bowel syndrome, including minimally invasive surgery.

The Joint Commission certified Westside Regional as one of six U.S. centers for minimally invasive colorectal surgery and is recognized as a disease-specific Colorectal Center of Excellence. Minimally invasive surgical procedures are performed through smaller incisions than traditional surgery, which results in the following benefits for our patients:

  • Reduced blood loss
  • Less pain and scarring
  • Shorter hospital stays
  • Lower risk of complication
  • Shorter recovery times

Dedicated pelvic floor program

As part of our physical therapy and rehabilitation department, our pelvic floor program specializes in the treatment of various conditions affecting the colon and rectum, including constipation and fecal incontinence.

Comprehensive gallbladder care

Located beneath the liver, the gallbladder is a little sac that stores bile from the liver. The gallbladder releases bile, via the cystic duct, into the small intestine to help break down the foods you eat.

Gallbladder conditions we treat

The GI specialists at Westside Regional treat an array of gallbladder conditions, including:

  • Gallstones (cholelithiasis)
  • Biliary colic or biliary pain
  • Common bile duct stones (choledocholithiasis)
  • Gallbladder cancer

Symptoms of a gallbladder condition

Indications that you could have a gallbladder condition requiring medical attention include:

  • Pain in the upper right abdomen
  • Sweating
  • Chills
  • Gas
  • Reflux and vomiting
  • Low-grade fever
  • Yellowish color of the skin or whites of eyes
  • Clay-colored stools

Treatment options for gallbladder disorders

Our gastrointestinal specialists tailor treatment options to meet each patient's individual needs. Treatment may include lifestyle modifications, medications to control symptoms or surgery to remove the gallbladder.

If gallbladder removal is necessary, our surgeons operate through a few small incisions in the chest to remove the gallbladder in a minimally invasive procedure called laparoscopic cholecystectomy.