Lancaster Area Celiac Support Group Meeting Rescheduled

The Lancaster Area Celiac Support Group meeting has been rescheduled for Monday, February 8th at Calvary Church, 1051 Landis Valley Road, Lancaster, PA 17601 at 6:15 p.m.

Join Giant Food Stores in-store Nutritionist, Sarah Glunz, MS, CNS, LDN to discuss some easy tips for shopping gluten-free plus take home some samples of her favorite products.

Doors open at 6:15 p.m. for shopping and programming starts at 7:00 p.m. For additional information, please click here.

Regional Gi Gastroenterologist Lancaster Pa Dr. Sadiya Cheshty

Sadiya Cheshty, M.D, Featured in Lancaster County Woman

Originally Published in Lancaster County Woman.

Headshot of Dr. CheshtySadiya Cheshty, MD, a board-certified gastroenterologist with Regional Gi, understands the challenges of women’s digestive health.

“Women go through life stages and events that uniquely impact their gastrointestinal system,” explains Dr. Cheshty. “Women have more abdominal surgeries than men, including C-sections and hysterectomies. In addition, pregnancies, hormonal fluctuations, and stages of menopause can all impact GI health.”

In fact, research indicates that gastrointestinal (GI) distress is more than twice as common in women as in men, and that females have a greater incidence of complicating factors than males. Digestive disorders, such as reflux, constipation, diarrhea, gas and bloating can disrupt and interfere with the daily activities and quality of life of many women.

To provide a more comprehensive and compassionate approach to expert healthcare, Regional Gi is providing women’s digestive health services at the (new) Lancaster General Health Women’s Specialty Center to help women find relief from gastrointestinal distress and restore digestive health in a supportive and comforting environment.

As an independent practice, Regional Gi is collaborating with Lancaster General Health and other providers in this new Women’s Specialty Center. The differentiating point of this center is that it is a unique specialty center exclusively for women, and the staff and providers are all women. In addition to Dr. Cheshty, healthcare will be provided at the center by a female cardiologist, female internal medicine physicians, and other female providers. The Women’s Specialty Center will have a multidisciplinary approach to care.

As she encourages Lancaster-area women to schedule proactive screenings and adopt healthy lifestyles promoting wellness and prevention, Dr. Cheshty notes: “Women are getting more in touch with their GI health, and there is a real need for women to have a place to go for digestive disorders.”

In addition to the new and existing patients Dr. Cheshty will see at the women’s center, patients continue to have the option to see her, or any of the other 14 Regional Gi gastroenterologists—at the other three Regional Gi sites at the Health Campus, on Oregon Pike in Brownstown, and in Elizabethtown.

With patient-care excellence as the driving force at Regional Gi, providing care at the new Women’s Specialty Center is yet one more way this practice makes patients feel comfortable as they are treated with dignity and compassion.

Christopher Shih, MD FACG

Dr. Christopher Shih, M.D. Featured in PracticeLink Magazine

Christopher Shih, MD FACG

Originally published in PracticeLink, Winter 2016 – Volume 26, Number 1.

Christopher Shih, M.D., graduated cum laude from Harvard University and earned his medical degree at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. He completed his internal medicine residency training at the University of Pennsylvania and his gastroenterology fellowship at Johns Hopkins.

After Shih performed with the National Symphony on the Capitol Lawn, a Washington Post writer declared, “If Shih is as gifted in medicine as he is in music, he as some serious career choices to make.”

But Shih didn’t have to choose between the two. Even as a gastroenterologist at Regional Gi in Pennsylvania, Shih continues to perform in major venues in the U.S. and abroad. He has played in over a dozen countries and on television and radio programs, including NPR’s All Things Considered, Radio France, Canada CBC, Taiwan CTV and more.

Click here to read the full article.

Ben Lazarus, DO

Dr. Ben Lazarus, D.O. Featured on Blue Ridge Cable 11

About 140,000 Americans are diagnosed with colorectal cancer each year.

Regional Gi’s Dr. Ben Lazarus, D.O. was featured on Blue Ridge Cable 11 during March’s Colon Cancer Awareness Month campaign.

“Since we’ve been doing colonoscopies and screening, that number has really fallen in the last twenty years and we have data to show that the death rate is significantly lower,” said Lazarus.

View the full story below:

A Screening or Diagnostic Colonoscopy? What is the difference?

It is important to understand the difference between a screening and diagnostic colonoscopy. It is very important that you talk to your insurance company on your benefits and their criteria, as this can have an effect on your out-of-pocket costs such as deductibles or co-insurance.Most insurance plans will cover screening colonoscopies, while diagnostic will be applied to your deductible or co-insurance.

Screening Colonoscopy Factors:
• No symptoms before the procedure
• No findings during the procedure (polyps, diverticulosis, etc.)
• No personal history of cancer or polyps
• No family history of cancer or polyps (some insurances consider this high risk)

Diagnostic Colonoscopy Factors:
• Symptoms before the procedure such as change in bowel habits,
rectal bleeding, abdominal pain, etc.
• Findings during the procedure (polyps, cancer, diverticulosis, etc)
• Personal history of cancer or polyps
• Family history of cancer or polyps (some insurances consider this high risk

Important Note: Disclaimer – Regional Gi follows appropriate coding guidelines and procedures. A screening procedure may become diagnostic based on the findings during the colonoscopy or symptoms you are experiencing.

The points noted above are to be used for informational purposes only, as insurance and benefits criteria vary by plan.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact your insurance company to verify your benefits and “out-of-pocket” costs for screening vs. diagnostic colonoscopies.

Feel free to share the attached PDF.

Sadiya Cheshty, MD

Dr. Cheshty Featured in December Issue of Business Women

Dr. Sadiya Cheshty, M.D., is featured in the December issue of Business Women discussing Gallstones and UTIs and how women are at a higher risk than men.

“Gallstone disease is one of the most common of all digestive diseases,” says Sadiya Cheshty, M.D., of Regional Gi. “Recent data has estimated that more than 14 million women aged 20 to 74 in the United States have gallbladder disease. That is more than double the number of men with the condition.”

Click here to read the entire article online. 

Christopher Shih, MD FACG

WGAL Features Regional Gi and Dr. Shih

Regional Gi gastroenterologist lancaster pa specialist doctor shihRoughly 3 million people currently suffer from Hepatitis C, a severe viral infection of the liver. If left untreated, sufferers are at risk for Cirrhosis or even cancer. However, new medicinal treatments allow patients to effectively combat this severe liver inflammation.

“Now, we can prescribe a pill a day for twelve weeks with almost no side effects. The cure rates are around 95%,” said Dr. Shih, Regional Gi.

It is important to seek testing and treatment if suffering from Hepatitis C. Please contact Regional Gi for more information. To listen to the rest of Dr. Shih’s interview, please visit WGAL.

David Smith, MD

Dr. Smith in Fall 2014 Issue of Lancaster Physician

Dr. Smith was quoted in the Fall 2014 Issue of Lancaster Physician.

Gluten Free: A Mandate, Not An Option, For Those with Celiac Disease was written by Amy B. Klatt discusses all things Gluten. From what Gluten is to Celiac Disease.

“According to Dr. David M. Smith, M.D., gastroenterologist at Regional Gi, “Typically celiac disease affects Caucasians of northern European descent. Given the fact that many people either do not know their ancestry or have a mixed ancestry makes this more difficult to classify in this regard. It can also affect both males and females, and can be diagnosed at any age.”

Click here to read the entire article


Ketan Kulkarni, MD

Testing for colorectal cancer without the colonoscopy

By: Ketan Kulkarni, MD

A new noninvasive test to detect colon and rectal cancer is offering hope that more people will be willing to be screened, driving down the rates of these cancers. Cologuard is the first stool DNA colorectal cancer screening test to be approved by the Food and Drug Administration.

The test is a potentially exciting advancement that could one day change the way we screen for colorectal cancer—but not yet. Many questions remain about the optimal use of stool-based testing, which detects the presence of red blood cells and DNA mutations that may be indicative of cancer.

In the trial upon which the FDA based its approval,  Cologuard was very sensitive for the detection of cancer, but it found less than half of all advanced adenomas (precancerous polyps) and even a smaller percentage of regular adenomas. People who have a positive result are advised to have a colonoscopy.

Additional limitations of stool-based DNA testing include the fairly high false positive rate, the complexity of the test itself, the lack of well-defined screening intervals, and the greater cost when compared to current stool immunochemical tests.

Colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer and the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States among cancers that affect men and women, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The CDC estimates that at least 60 percent of colorectal cancer deaths could be prevented if everyone age 50 or older had the recommended screenings—fecal occult blood test, sigmoidoscopy, or colonoscopy.

The gold standard for colorectal cancer screening is still colonoscopy, in which your doctor uses a flexible tube to examine the inside of your colon. It’s been successful at lowering cancer deaths by not only detecting cancer at earlier stages, but by also detecting precancerous polyps. Your doctor can remove these polyps during the colonoscopy and prevent cancer.

Current guidelines call for testing to start at age 50 in those individuals without a family history, but about half of all eligible people haven’t been properly screened with one of the recommended tools.

The approval of Cologuard holds much promise as a screening option that is noninvasive, can produce reliable results and provide a better patient experience. However we’ll need more data to determine how accurate Cologuard will be in the “real world”, outside the context of a clinical trial, before it becomes standard practice.

Regional Gi Voted Favorite Gastroenterology Practice in this Year’s Readers’ Choice

This year’s Lancaster Newspaper Readers’ Choice Winners have been announced  and we’re excited that you have voted Regional Gi as Lancaster’s Favorite Gastroenterology Practice, seven years in a row. Thank you for your support over the years as we work hard to provide you the best in GI Care.

Congratulations to all the other winners