Bronson Gastroenterology Specialists - Portage

Don’t put off the care you need because of COVID-19. We continue to safely schedule inpatient and outpatient services at Bronson facilities. Schedule your appointment online, call your Bronson practice or call a Bronson Care Advisor at (269) 341-7788. Many providers also offer video visits. Learn more.

Bronson Gastroenterology Specialists - Portage (A Bronson Methodist Hospital Facility)

Bronson Gastroenterology Specialists - Portage (A Bronson Methodist Hospital Facility)
3304 Cooley Court
Portage, MI 49024

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Hours of Operation
Sunday
Closed
Monday
8:00 AM
-
5:00 PM
Tuesday
8:00 AM
-
5:00 PM
Wednesday
8:00 AM
-
5:00 PM
Thursday
8:00 AM
-
5:00 PM
Friday
8:00 AM
-
5:00 PM
Saturday
Closed

Main: (269) 349-2266
Fax: (269) 349-0792

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Specialty

  • Gastroenterology

Our training and expertise helps patients with problems affecting their digestive system. And since every patient is different, we're here to find the best ways to meet their individual needs.

Appointments

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About Our Office

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Privacy Practices

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Our Expertise

In addition to rare disorders of the digestive system, we diagnose or treat the following common conditions:

  • Colorectal cancer
  • Heartburn and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
  • Peptic ulcer disease and Helicobacter pylori
  • Diverticulitis, diverticulosis and ischemic bowel disease
  • Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), including Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis
  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
  • Chronic vomiting and gastroparesis
  • Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease
  • Cirrhosis of the liver
  • Viral hepatitis
  • Celiac disease and food intolerances
  • Acute and chronic pancreatitis
  • Nutritional deficiencies
  • Gastrointestinal infections caused by viruses, bacteria, fungi and protozoa
  • Functional illness, such as constipation, diarrhea, vomiting, belching and flatulence
  • Pancreatobiliary disease
  • Barrett’s esophagus
  • Gastrointestinal oncology
  • Large colon polyps

Diet and Medication

Our gastroenterologists treat and manage all aspects of the digestive system, including nutritional needs as well as complications from medications:

  • Food allergies, fructose intolerance and lactose intolerance
  • NSAIDS (Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs)
  • Probiotic

We help patients with problems affecting their digestive system, which allows the body to process nutrients. Symptoms and complaints related to the digestive system are some of the most common reasons patients take over-the-counter medications, prescription medication or seek the advice of healthcare providers. Good digestive health indicates an ability to process nutrients through properly functioning gastrointestinal organs, including the stomach, intestine, liver, pancreas and gallbladder. When these organs do not function properly, patients may need to see a gastroenterologist, also referred to as a “GI” specialist. Our physicians are all board certified in gastroenterology. Our gastroenterologists and physician assistants have extensive training in diseases of the digestive system. They can answer your questions, perform tests to make a diagnosis and prescribe the best course of treatment to help you feel better. Our gastroenterologists use a number of techniques to view the organs of the digestive system. The most common tests they perform are colonoscopy and upper-GI endoscopy.

  • Colonoscopy is performed to examine the large intestine for disease, most commonly colorectal cancer. Everyone age 50 and older should be screened for colorectal cancer. When performing a colonoscopy, the gastroenterologist uses a long, thin, flexible tube with a tiny video camera and a light on the end — called the colonoscope — to view the entire colon and rectum and check for polyps, inflammatory changes or cancer. If polyps are found, they often can be removed with this procedure.
  • Endoscopy can be helpful in the evaluation or diagnosis of various problems, including difficult or painful swallowing, pain in the stomach or abdomen, bleeding, ulcers, tumors, and problems with the gallbladder, pancreas and bile ducts. An endoscope is a long, thin, flexible tube with a tiny video camera and light on the end. By adjusting the controls on the endoscope, the gastroenterologist can safely guide the instrument to carefully examine the inside lining of the upper digestive system. In some cases, the GI scan treat digestive conditions through the endoscope.

At this time, we are only able to accept referrals for patients in our nine-county region in southwest Michigan (Allegan, Barry, Berrien, Branch, Calhoun, Cass, Kalamazoo, St. Joseph and Van Buren).

Services

  • Adult Breath Testing
  • Bravos
  • Endoscopy Ultrasound

Colonoscopy

Colonoscopy is performed to examine the large intestine for disease, most commonly colorectal cancer. Everyone age 50 and older should be screened for colorectal cancer. When performing a colonoscopy, the gastroenterologist uses a long, thin, flexible tube with a tiny video camera and a light on the end — called the colonoscope — to view the entire colon and rectum and check for polyps, inflammatory changes or cancer. If polyps are found, they often can be removed with this procedure.

Conditions Treated

Colonoscopy is used for the diagnosis and possible treatment of:

  • Colon cancer
  • Polyps – tumor growths which can be the precursors to colon cancer.
  • Colitis (ulcerative or Crohn’s) – chronic, inflammation of the colon and small intestine
  • Diverticulosis and diverticulitis – pockets along the intestinal wall that develop over time and can become infected or bleed
  • Bleeding lesions – bleeding may occur from different points in the colon
  • Abdominal symptoms, such as pain or discomfort, particularly if associated with weight loss or anemia
  • Chronic diarrhea, constipation or a change in bowel habits
  • Anemia

Preparation

Based on the location of your procedure, see the prep instructions for that location.

Procedure

Colonoscopy is usually performed on an outpatient basis.

After the patient is sedated, the colonoscope is inserted through the rectum and moved gently around the bends of the colon. This procedure takes 15 to 30 minutes and is usually well tolerated by the sedated patient.

A recovery area is available to monitor vital signs until the patient is alert and stable for discharge to home.

Results

After the exam, the physician explains the findings to the patient and family. If a biopsy has been performed or a polyp removed, the results of these are not usually available for five to seven days. Please contact our office if you have not heard from us in two weeks at (269) 349-2266 and ask for the doctors’ nurse.

Caution

You must not drive a car, operate heavy machinery or make important decisions until the following day. Therefore, you will need to have someone available to drive you home.

EGD (Upper Endoscopy)

An endoscope is a long, thin, flexible tube with a tiny video camera and light on the end. By adjusting the controls on the endoscope, the gastroenterologist can safely guide the instrument to carefully examine the inside lining of the upper digestive system. In some cases, GIs can treat digestive conditions through the endoscope.

This procedure can detect early cancer and can distinguish between benign and malignant (cancerous) conditions when biopsies (small tissue samples) of suspicious areas are obtained. Biopsies are taken for many reasons and do not necessarily mean that cancer is suspected. A cytology test (introduction of a small brush to collect cells) may also be performed.

Conditions Treated

Endoscopy can be helpful in the evaluation or diagnosis of various problems:

  • Difficult or painful swallowing
  • Pain in the stomach or abdomen
  • Bleeding
  • Ulcers
  • Tumors
  • Problems with the gallbladder, pancreas and bile ducts

Preparation

Caution

You must not drive a car, operate heavy machinery or make important decisions until the following day. Therefore, you will need to have someone available to drive you home.

Capsule Endoscopy and Manometry

Capsule endoscopy helps your physician determine the cause for recurrent or persistent symptoms, in cases where other diagnostic procedures have failed to determine the reason for your symptoms. In certain chronic gastrointestinal diseases, this procedure can help to evaluate the extent to which your small intestine is involved or to monitor the effect of therapeutics.

Conditions Treated

Capsule endoscopy is used for the diagnosis and possible treatment of:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Diarrhea
  • Bleeding
  • Anemia

Preparation

Procedure

A capsule endoscopy enables your doctor to examine the three portions (duodenum, jejunum, ileum) of your small intestine. Your doctor will use a vitamin-pill sized video capsule as an endoscope, which has its own camera and light source. Our medical professional, will review the process with you and set up the arrays. While the video capsule travels through your body, images are sent to a data recorder which you wear on a waist belt (for approximately 8 hours). Most patients consider the test comfortable and are able to complete normal activities of daily living activities. At the end of the procedure you will need to return to our office to return the data recorder and sensor array. Afterwards, your doctor will view the images on a video monitor.

Results

Usually within two weeks after completing the procedure your physician will notify you of the results.

Additional information is available at our office through our medical professionals.

Caution

You must not drive a car, operate heavy machinery or make important decisions until the following day. Therefore, you will need to have someone available to drive you home.

Endoscopic Retrograde Cholangiopancreatography (ERCP)

ERCP is a specialized technique used to study the ducts (drainage routes) of the liver (bile ducts), gallbladder, and pancreas (pancreatic duct). An endoscope (flexible thin tube) is passed through the mouth, esophagus and stomach into the duodenum (first part of the small intestine). After the common opening to ducts from the liver and pancreas are visually identified, a catheter (narrow plastic tube) is passed through the endoscope into the ducts. Contrast material (“dye”) is then injected gently into the ducts (pancreatic or biliary) and X-rays are taken.

Conditions Treated

ERCP is a valuable tool for diagnosing many diseases of the pancreas, bile ducts, liver, and gallbladder. Structural abnormalities suspected by symptoms, physical examination, laboratory tests, or x-ray can be shown in detail and biopsies of abnormal tissue can be obtained if necessary. ERCP can make the important distinction between whether jaundice (yellow discoloration of the eyes and skin) is caused by diseases that are treated medically, such as hepatitis, or by structural diseases such as gallstones, tumors, or strictures (obstructing scar tissue) that are treated surgically or endoscopically. ERCP may also provide important diagnostic information. ERCP can be used to determine whether or not surgery is necessary and is helpful in providing the anatomic detail if surgery is necessary.

Several conditions of the biliary or pancreatic duct can be treated (cured or improved) by therapeutic ERCP techniques that can open the end of the bile duct, extract stones, and place stents (plastic or metal drainage tubes) across obstructed ducts to improve their drainage.

Preparation

Procedure

After your physician has discussed why ERCP is necessary, he/she will also discuss any possible complications that may arise from ERCP. A local anesthetic may be applied to your throat and an intravenous sedative will be given to make you more comfortable during the test. Some patients also receive antibiotics before the procedure. The test begins with you lying on your left side on a table. The endoscope is passed through the mouth, esophagus, and stomach into the duodenum. The instrument does not interfere with breathing. The injection of contrast into the ducts rarely causes discomfort.

At the conclusion of your procedure, you will be taken to the recovery area until the effects of the intravenous medication wear off.

Caution

You must not drive a car, operate heavy machinery or make important decisions until the following day. Therefore, you will need to have someone available to drive you home.

Flexible Sigmoidoscopy

A flexible sigmoidoscopy is a direct examination of your sigmoid colon (lower part of your colon) using a thin flexible instrument (endoscope).

Conditions Treated

This procedure aids your doctor in the diagnosis and treatment of some lower GI symptoms, such as:

  • Rectal pain
  • Bleeding
  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation

Preparation

Caution

You must not drive a car, operate heavy machinery or make important decisions until the following day. Therefore, you will need to have someone available to drive you home.

Liver Biopsy

The liver is found in the right upper abdomen, behind the ribs. When a physician evaluates a liver condition he will take a medical history and perform a physical exam. Blood studies, known as liver function tests (LFT), give an overview of the health of the liver. If LFT results are persistently abnormal, the physician will then perform additional medical studies to determine the cause of the problem.

The liver biopsy helps to answer questions that the physician has with regards to the patient's condition. The biopsy is a small sample of liver tissue which is prepared and stained in a laboratory, so the pathologist can view it microscopically. This helps the physician make a specific diagnosis and determine the extent and seriousness of the liver condition.

Conditions Treated

There are many different problems that may occur in the liver and some may cause permanent damage. These conditions include:

  • Viral infections
  • Reactions to drugs or alcohol
  • Tumors
  • Hereditary conditions
  • Problems with the body’s immune system

Preparation

Procedure

The liver biopsy is usually performed on an outpatient basis. A mild sedative may be given to the patient prior to the procedure. An ultrasound is used to identify the best location to make the biopsy. After the physician determines the location, the patient lies quietly on the back. That area of the skin where the biopsy will be done is carefully cleaned. A local anesthetic is used to numb the skin and tissue. A specially designed needle is inserted through the skin into the liver and a small core of tissue is obtained. The procedure takes only 15 to 20 minutes.

Recovery

The patient is kept at rest for several hours following the exam. Medical personnel check the heart rate and blood pressure during this time. Before being discharged, the patient is given instructions about returning to normal activities and about eating. Activity is usually restricted for a day or so after the biopsy.

Caution

You must not drive a car, operate heavy machinery or make important decisions until the following day. Therefore, you will need to have someone available to drive you home.

Patient Information

Instructions

Medical Records

Your medical record is confidential. We will not talk about your condition with anyone without your permission.

If you wish to release information from your medical records, fill out the Release of Information (English)Release of Information (Spanish) form and return to our office. Be sure to sign the form. Unsigned requests cannot be processed.

General Health Information

The following websites are extremely helpful in gaining additional tips and information for our patients digestive health and care.

www.gi.org - This site is the American College of Gastroenterology. There are several helpful tools in understanding gastroenterology health issues, questions to ask your physician, and patient informational brochures on several topics, such as: Barretts Esophagus, Colon Cancer, Endoscopy, etc.

www.asge.org - This is the site for the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy. You will need to select the patient information tab, then you will have access to Standards of Practice as well as some up to date information on digestive health.

www.ccfa.org - Crohns Colitis Foundation of America, a valuable resource for patients with both Crohn’s and Ulcerative Colitis.

www.digestive.niddk.nih.gov - This site is from the National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse. An excellent resource for digestive issues from A to Z.

Cancer Sites

www.cancer.org - American Cancer Society provides resources, education and support services. Please visit this site for guidance and information.

www.wmcc.org - The West Michigan Cancer Center is an acknowledged leader in the west Michigan area in cancer treatment.

www.michigancancer.org - The Michigan Cancer Consortium provides a forum for collaboration to reduce the burden of cancer among the citizens of Michigan.

Calling the Office

We have an automated phone system. Here are some guidelines for you to follow that will assist us in processing your telephone call efficiently:

  • Press 1 - if you know your parties extension
  • Press 2 - if you are calling from a physician's office
  • Press 3 - to hear general office information - such as our office hours, fax number and address
  • Press 4 - to reach Scheduling – to check on the status of a referral, make or cancel an appointment, and ask questions about the time or location of your appointment
  • Press 5 - if you are returning a nurse's phone call
  • Press 6 - if you need a refill on a prescription
  • Press 7 - for Patient Financial Services – for questions regarding your billing statement. You may also call our Financial Services department directly at (269) 349-8930 or (269) 488-3685
  • Press 8 - if you are calling about a referral or would like to speak to the referral coordinator
  • Press 9 - for Medical Records – to receive copies of your records or those records of individuals you have authority to request
  • Press 0 - to reach the operator or if you have questions about your test results, procedure questions, and/or other digestive health issues

Our staff keeps all of your information confidential. If you call our office and a staff member isn’t available, give us as much information as possible. We will call you back as soon as possible.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are your office hours and telephone numbers?
Our office hours are Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Our main telephone number is (269) 349-2266, fax number is (269) 349-0792, and billing office number is (269) 349-8930 or (269) 488-3686

Do I need a referral to be seen?
Not always, some insurance payers do allow open access, or self-referral. Others require pre-authorization, such as some managed care plans (HMO’s, PPO’s). It is best to check with your benefits contact and primary care doctor to confirm. If you are insured with a plan that does not require a referral and have a gastrointestinal disorder, you do not need to have a referral from your primary care doctor.

How do I reach a particular department when calling the office?
It depends on what information you need. We have an automated phone system. Here are some guidelines for you to follow that will assist us in processing your telephone call efficiently:

  • Press 1 - if you know your parties extension
  • Press 2 - if you are calling from a physician's office
  • Press 3 - to hear general office information - such as our office hours, fax number and address
  • Press 4 - to reach Scheduling – to check on the status of a referral, make or cancel an appointment, and ask questions about the time or location of your appointment
  • Press 5 - if you are returning a nurse's phone call
  • Press 6 - if you need a refill on a prescription
  • Press 7 - for Patient Financial Services – for questions regarding your billing statement. You may also call our Financial Services department directly at (269) 349-8930 or (269) 488-3685
  • Press 8 - if you are calling about a referral or would like to speak to the referral coordinator
  • Press 9 - for Medical Records – to receive copies of your records or those records of individuals you have authority to request
  • Press 0 - to reach the operator or if you have questions about your test results, procedure questions, and/or other digestive health issues

What should I do if I need a prescription refill and am not scheduled for an office visit?
Please call the main office at (269) 349-2266 and press 6 for the prescription mailbox as early in the day as possible and please allow 24 hours for your prescription to be filled.

  • Be sure you provide the pharmacy name, phone number, physician name, drug name, dosage, patient name and date of birth.
  • Be sure that your refill request is made one week before your supply is gone.

How long do I have to wait for an appointment with the office?
New patients are generally seen within 4-6 weeks. However, if your problem is of an urgent nature, you will be scheduled as soon as possible. You should receive a new patient packet at least 10 days prior to your visit. Please complete and mail the forms back to us in the envelope provided. If you are unable to keep your appointment, 48 hours notice is required. Call (269) 349-2266 and press 4 to cancel and/or reschedule your appointment.

Where do your physicians do their procedures? Can I request where my procedure is going to be done?
Our physicians are on staff at Bronson Methodist Hospital, Borgess Hospital and Kalamazoo Endo Center.

You may request a location, or if there is no preference we will schedule you at the location with availability and need for your procedure. Your insurance may also require a specific location which will indicate to us where your procedure must be done.

Does my driver need to stay during my procedure?
Yes, at all locations (Bronson, Borgess, and Kalamazoo Endo Center). The length of time is typically 2 hours. Your driver also needs to check in with you at registration. All drivers must be at least 18 years of age.

How do I get a Bronson MyChart account?
Simply contact our office and request one! Once you have an account you can safely and securely access your electronic health record. Learn more

  • Photo of a senior couple at the park.
  • Bronson Gastroenterology Specialists - Portage.

Bronson Gastroenterology Specialists Portage is located just off Centre Avenue between US131 and Oakland Drive. Park in front of building.

1020018021

1003

MyChart Participant

  • Yes

Location - 340B

  • A Bronson Methodist Hospital facility

At your first appointment, your new provider will review the medicine you have been taking. They may talk to you about other options, including changing to different medicine.

This provider follows CDC guidelines for childhood shots (also called vaccinations). Please choose another Bronson provider if you do not plan to vaccinate your child.

This provider cannot see patients who take controlled substances for pain management. Please choose another Bronson provider.

This provider does not provide care for patients who take more than two prescribed medicines on a regular basis. Please choose another Bronson provider.

This provider cannot provide care for patients who are under the age of 18. Please choose another Bronson provider.

This provider asks women to see an OB/GYN provider for gynecological exams. He welcomes women for all other healthcare.

This provider doesn’t provide care for patients who take behavioral health medicine. Please choose another Bronson provider.

This provider isn’t currently accepting new Medicaid patients. Please choose another Bronson provider.

This provider cannot provide care for patients who are above the age of 18. Please choose another Bronson provider.

This provider is currently only accepting pediatric patients. If you are over the age of 18, please choose another Bronson provider.

This provider cannot provide care for patients who are under the age of 15. Please choose another Bronson provider.

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