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Pediatric Gastroenterology & Nutrition
Jan 11, 2007

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Anupama Chawla, MBBS, chief
Mark Lowenheim, MD
Jeffrey Morganstern, MD
Janet Difalco, RN, CPNP
Kathy Usmani, RN, CPNP
Marie Puangco, RD

New Faculty

 Jeff Morganstern:   Stony Brook student, residency at Schneider’s children’s hospital and fellowship at Montefiore hospital in Bronx, NY

Clinical Programs:

The division of Pediatric Gastroenterology & Nutrition provides outpatient and inpatient consultations for pediatric patients with gastrointestinal, liver and nutritional concerns.   The division treats a large number of children with reflux, acute and chronic abdominal pain, gastrointestinal bleeding, Celiac Disease, failure to thrive, chronic constipation, feeding problems, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Crohn’s Disease and Ulcerative Colitis.   Children with a wide range of liver diseases, including infectious hepatitis, autoimmune hepatitis, congenital anomalies, and Wilson’s Disease are evaluated and followed through the program.   In addition to these disorders, an increasing number of children with fatty liver(an emerging serious liver disease) are also evaluated and followed at Stony Brook.

Nutritional consultations are provided for children with severe feeding problems, children dependent on tube feeds, those with Celiac Disease, with excessive weight gain, obesity, hypercholesterolemia, and with severe food allergies.   The division also manages nutritional support for patients with Cystic Fibrosis.   The nutritional services are provided by Maria Puangco, pediatric dietician for over 20 years and by Dr. Chawla who is also board certified in nutrition support.

The division prides itself for providing excellent care and support for families with children requiring tube feedings.   Gastrostomy tubes are placed via endoscopy in the endoscopy suite or bedside in the ICU in critically ill children by the division’s physicians.  For those patients in whom persutaneous gastrostomy tubes can not be placed, the service works with the Pediatric surgeons at Stony Brook to coordinate the surgical placement of these tubes.

The division performs over 500 procedures a year.   Upper endoscopies, colonoscopies, polyp removal, pH probe studies, 48 hour BRAVO pH monitoring, motility studies are performed in a State of the Art endoscopy suite at the hospital.   Liver biopsies are performed in the Pediatric ICU. Capsule endoscopy is now available for small bowel evaluation. All pediatric endoscopies are performed under sedation/anesthesia provided by a pediatric anesthesiologist, therefore markedly enhancing the safety and comfort our children.

The division has offices at the University Hospital as well as locations in Riverhead and Islip.   At present we see an average of 500 outpatients a month.   In spite of 9 clinics a week our waiting period has been over a month, a situation we will remedy with the addition of Dr. Morganstern to our faculty in July of 2006.   In spite of the heavy clinical load, all patients who are felt to require urgent visits by their Pediatrician are accommodated on an urgent basis at the request of the Pediatricians.

The division is actively involved in clinical research in children with Crohn’s Disease, Ulcerative Colitis, Celiac Disease, Cystic Fibrosis and Irritable Bowel Syndrome. The division has presented papers as well as invited lectures at several national conferences.   Current and recently completed research projects include:

Effect of Total caloric Intake on Parenteral Nutrition Associated Cholestasis in Low Birth Weight Infants. Blau,J., Sridhar,S.,   Chawla,A.. Completed. Manuscript in preparation.  

Correlation of Autoimmune Thyroiditis and Celiac Disease. Wilson,T., Lane,A, Chawla,A., Lazare,F. Data analysis n progress.

Reliability of Infant Length Measurement:  A Comparison of Tape and Length Board.   Puangco,M., Chawla,A. Data acquisition and analysis in progress.

Drinkable Aloe Vera Gel(DAVG) for the treatment of Irritable Bowel Syndrome in Children. Leiby,A., Usmani,K., Chawla A. Patient enrollment in progress.

We also now have a Stony Brook chapter of the “Reach out for Youth with Ileitis and Colitis”, support group for children with Crohn’s disease and Ulcerative Colitis. For information about this group and all services provided by our division we can be contacted at 444-8115.



© Copyright 2007 by Pediatric News at Stony Brook University Medical Center

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