By the Numbers

By the Numbers

January 04, 2016
4 min read

Top 10 gastroenterology stories of 2015

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Numerous developments in the field of gastroenterology occurred in 2015, with an abundance of new data in IBS, IBD and other subspecialties published in the journals and presented at the year’s leading scientific meetings.

Using web analytics, social media and expert opinion, Healio Gastroenterology has compiled the year’s top 10 most popular news articles, including new research, FDA approvals, guidelines and expert video perspectives.

1. Seven developments in Crohn's disease

Tonya Kaltenbach

Crohn’s disease was a hot topic in early 2015, with an abundance of data published in the journals in March. This article recapped the most highly trafficked news on Healio Gastroenterology about Crohn’s disease, including the SCENIC consensus statement on surveillance and management of IBD-related dysplasia authored by Tonya Kaltenbach, MD, MS, and colleagues. Read more

2. Experts reach consensus on nutrition recommendations at nonprofit summit

In November, more than 75 experts from the U.S., Canada and Europe reached a first-of-its-kind consensus on overall nutrition recommendations at the Finding Common Ground summit in Boston, including support for the 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee report, food system sustainability and improvements in food literacy, according to a press release.

The summit was organized by Oldways, a food and nutrition nonprofit organization, and hosted a variety of nutrition scientists, medical experts and media members with diverse dietary philosophies. Read more

3. Microbiome composition associated with efficacy of low FODMAP diet in pediatric IBS

Low FODMAP diet reduced abdominal pain frequency in children with irritable bowel syndrome, and those who responded had different baseline gut microbial composition, according to study results.

"A low FODMAP diet appears to ameliorate GI symptoms in children with IBS,” the researchers wrote. “Those who responded robustly to the diet appear to have a different baseline microbiome composition, with greater saccharolytic capacity, than those who do not respond to a low FODMAP diet." Read more

4. VIDEO: Expert discusses diet as emerging cause, management strategy for GI disease

William D. Chey

HONOLULU — In this exclusive video, William D. Chey, MD, FACG, professor of medicine at the University of Michigan health system, and director of the GI Nutrition and Behavioral Wellness Program at the University of Michigan, discussed the David Sun Lecture, which he delivered during the ACG 2015 Annual Postgraduate Course.

A “main message of my talk was the importance of having a GI dietician as part of a multidisciplinary team to manage patients with GI symptoms,” Chey said. “A GI dietician can not only make sure that any diet interventions are provided in a complete and medically responsible way, but they can also provide a a really important sounding board that can actually improve efficiency and satisfaction amongst patients who are trying to start and maintain a diet strategy as a way to improve their GI symptoms.” Watch now

5. Data, while promising, insufficient for recommending elimination diets in IBS

Paul Moayyedi

Elimination diets cannot be strongly recommended to patients with irritable bowel syndrome until further evidence becomes available, according to a systematic review and meta-analysis performed by Paul Moayyedi, MBChB, PhD, MPH, FACG, from McMaster University in Ontario, Canada, and colleagues.

“Despite promising data on the efficacy of dietary restriction in IBS, we suggest that this approach cannot be recommended strongly until more evidence is accumulated,” they concluded. Read more


6. VIDEO: Over-the-counter IBgard improves IBS symptoms

WASHINGTON — At DDW 2015, Michael Epstein, MD, senior medical advisor for IMHealthScience, discussed his presentation on IBgard, a new medical food product for the treatment of diarrhea-predominant and mixed-symptom irritable bowel syndrome. According to a press release, IBgard works by delivering peppermint oil to the lower gut.

“We presented our data on our pivotal study here for IBgard, and we showed [it] had significant effects across the spectrum of all … symptoms of IBS,” Epstein said. Watch now

7. FDA approves breath test for diagnosis of gastroparesis

In April, the FDA approved the Gastric Emptying Breath Test, or GEBT, a novel noninvasive diagnostic for gastroparesis, according to a press release.

“The GEBT [Advanced Breath Diagnostics] is another option for aiding in the diagnosis of gastroparesis,” Alberto Gutierrez, PhD, director of the Office of In Vitro Diagnostics and Radiological Health in the FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health, said in the release. “It can be performed in any clinical setting since it does not require the health care professionals administering the test to undergo special training or to take special precautions related to radiation emitting compounds.” Read more

8. ASGE recommends changes in bowel preparation before colonoscopy

John R. Saltzman

The Standards of Practice Committee of the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy released an updated guideline on bowel preparation before colonoscopy in April 2015. 

“The new ASGE Standards of Practice bowel preparation guidelines represent a dramatic update and change from the prior one,” John R. Saltzman, MD, FACP, FACG, FASGE, AGAF, from Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School, and co-author of the guideline, told Healio Gastroenterology. “Since the time of publication of the last guideline on bowel preps, there have been substantial advances in prep quality, safety and patient tolerability.” Read more

9. H. pylori eradication may reduce gastric cancer incidence 

Alex Ford

Eradication of Helicobacter pylori may prevent the development of gastric cancer in healthy, asymptomatic Asian individuals, according to a review.

“The review highlights the need for further trials in different populations to provide more evidence, and these should report both the benefits and harms of such an approach,” Alex Ford, MBChB, MD, FRCP, from St. James's University Hospital, and Leeds University in the UK, said in a press release. Read more 

10. Curcumin shows promise for treatment of mild-to-moderate ulcerative colitis

Charles N. Bernstein

When combined with mesalamine therapy, curcumin, a natural phytochemical derived from turmeric, was superior to placebo in inducing clinical and endoscopic remission in patients with mild-to-moderate ulcerative colitis, according to results from a double-blind randomized controlled trial. 

These investigators “have tackled an important therapeutic need in UC, a well-tolerated, inexpensive, oral therapy in mild-to-moderate UC, resistant to mesalamine,” Charles N. Bernstein, MD, from the University of Manitoba IBD Clinical and Research Center, wrote in a related editorial. Read more