What You Can Learn from Gastroenterology Testing

Mar 08, 2023
What You Can Learn from Gastroenterology Testing
Your digestive system plays a critical role in your overall health, yet diagnosing gastrointestinal symptoms isn’t always easy. If you have an undiagnosed condition, it’s time to find out more about gastroenterology testing and how it can help you.

Gastroenterology is the branch of medicine that focuses on the digestive system and its associated organs. Up to 70 million Americans are living with a digestive disease, and gastroenterology testing is a critical component of diagnosing and treating these conditions.

At Path MD in Los Angeles, California, our highly skilled team of pathologists specializes in advanced gastroenterology testing for unusual cases. If you have undiagnosed gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms, these tests can reveal essential information about your health so you can get started on the right treatment plan.

Types of gastroenterology testing

There are several types of gastroenterology testing. Each method provides unique information about your digestive system, and a few of the most common tests are:

Upper endoscopy

An upper endoscopy involves inserting a thin, flexible tube with a camera into your mouth and down your esophagus to examine your upper digestive system. The test can reveal inflammation, ulcers, and other abnormalities in your esophagus, stomach, and upper small intestine.

Capsule endoscopy

Instead of using a thin tube with a camera, a capsule endoscopy involves swallowing a small capsule that contains a camera. The camera takes pictures of your digestive system as it passes through your body, and it can reveal abnormalities in your small intestine that may not be detected by other tests.


A colonoscopy involves inserting a thin, flexible tube with a camera into your rectum to examine your colon and rectum. The test can reveal polyps, tumors, and other abnormalities in your lower digestive tract.

Breath testing

Breath tests measure the amount of gas produced by bacteria in your digestive system. These tests can diagnose conditions like lactose intolerance and bacterial overgrowth, including H. Pylori.

Advanced molecular testing

Many of the most common GI conditions can be detected with traditional gastroenterology testing like endoscopy and colonoscopy. But in some cases, more advanced testing may be needed to reach a diagnosis.

Our pathologists at Path MD specialize in advanced gastroenterology diagnostics. Our services include molecular studies, biopsy analysis, immunohistochemistry, and full GI cytology for rare and unusual cases.

What you can learn from gastroenterology testing

Gastroenterology testing reveals essential information about the health of your digestive system. When you have GI pain or other symptoms, we use gastroenterology testing to diagnose your condition and develop an appropriate treatment plan.

At Path MD, we offer comprehensive consultations and care coordination for unusual cases. We review your medical history, evaluate your test results, and conduct more advanced testing as needed.

We use the BIOFIRE® GI Pathogen Panel to test for 22 gastrointestinal pathogens with one sample. The test is fast and accurate, which means you can start a more effective treatment sooner than with traditional testing.


Testing tells you whether you have a digestive system disorder, and how severe your condition is. A few possible conditions include:


  • Gastroenteritis
  • Gastrointestinal cancer, including colorectal cancer and pancreatic cancer
  • Infection, including C.diff and H. Pylori
  • Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)

Once we know your diagnosis and the extent of the issues, we start working on the best treatment approach for your needs.

Gastroenterology testing provides valuable information about your health. If you haven’t found answers with standard testing, it’s time to consider molecular testing and pathology. Contact us to learn more about your options at Path MD.