Making Time to Listen
Our Goal: Keeping You Healthy
At least 60 million Americans suffer from chronic digestive diseases that impact their lifestyle. Digestive problems can be embarrassing and disabling. A woman's digestive tract is more sensitive to irritants than a man's. Consequently, women are much more likely to suffer from certain digestive problems than men. For instance, women are twice as likely as men to develop gallstones and five times more likely to develop irritable bowel syndrome. Women need to be aware of the symptoms, risk factors and screening options for common digestive diseases.
At West Chester Gastrointestinal Group, we recognize the special needs of our female patients. The goal of the Women's Digestive Health Program is to provide dedicated and comprehensive digestive health care for women.
The Team Approach
Our healthcare team consists of two physician leaders, nurses and support staff who understand the sensitive nature of digestive disorders. Program appointments will include interaction with several of our experienced, compassionate team members. If the need arises, endoscopic procedures including upper endoscopy and colonoscopy are performed on site at the practice's West Chester office. The healthcare team helps provide a comfortable and safe environment to complete these tests.
Making Time to Listen
Talking about digestive problems can be difficult. Often a woman's digestive issues are closely intertwined with changes in her menstrual cycle and can be complicated by other disorders like fibromyalgia, migraines and diabetes. To get to the heart of often complex issues, a patient needs time with their healthcare team. During weekly program clinics, new patients are booked for extended appointments to give them enough time to discuss all of their complex problems and develop a diagnostic and treatment plan.
The following list includes many, but not all, of the disorders that we treat:
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
- Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)
- Colon Cancer Prevention, Detection and Surveillance
- Gallstone and other Biliary Tract Disorders
- Chronic Constipation
- Abdominal Pain Syndrome
- Pregnancy Related Digestive Problems
- Liver Disease
- Celiac Disease
- GERD (Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease) and Heartburn
- Bloating and Gas
Women and Colorectal Cancer:
A Population At Risk
Colon cancer is the second most common cause of cancer death in the United States, responsible for an estimated 57,000 deaths each year. The myth that colon cancer is just a "Man's Disease" is wrong. Colon cancer strikes both women and men equally and has no racial bias. The recommended screening test for colon cancer is a colonoscopy. Stastiscally, women are screened less often with colonoscopy then men, putting them at special risk to develop colon cancer. Embarrassment or fear often plays a part in preventing women from having a screening colonoscopy. Our healthcare team is ready to discuss the details of the screening process with you. When it's time for a procedure, the test can be completed by Dr. Bender or Dr. Miller with the professional staff of West Chester Endoscopy.
Available When You Need Us
When an emergency arises, we are staffed to assure our patient's immediate care. In the event of an emergency, one of the group's physicians is on call 24 hours a day to direct your care. West Chester Gastrointestinal Group is staffed with 8 Board Certified Gastroenterologists who are dedicated to serving residents of South Eastern Pennsylvania.
The Program's Physician Leaders
Reina Pai Bender, MD
A native of Chester County, Dr. Bender joined the West Chester Gastrointestinal Group in 2007 after completing her gastroenterology and hepatology fellowship at Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School. While in Boston, she completed a program in Clinical Effectiveness at the Harvard School of Public Health. Dr. Bender has received numerous academic, research, and teaching awards and has published and presented scientific papers at several national meetings. She was recently named one of the "Top 40 Doctors Under 40" by Philadelphia Magazine, and a "Top Doc" by Main Line Today magazine. She is board certified in internal medicine and gastroenterology with special interests in women's health issues, colon cancer and irritable bowel syndrome.
Carrie N. Miller Baichi, MD
Born and raised in northeast Philadelphia, Dr. Miller Baichi attended New York University School of Medicine after graduating magna cum laude from the University of Pennsylvania. She completed an internal medicine residency training at Thomas Jefferson University and gasteroenterology and hepatology fellowship training at the State University of New York at Buffalo. Dr. Miller is board certified in internal medicine and gastroenterology. Dr. Miller practices general gastroenterology with a special interest in women's digestive health, nutrition counseling, inflammatory bowel disease and digestive disorders of pregnancy.