How To Recover From IBD Without Surgery & Medication

Gas, bloating, constipation, diarrhea, urgency, and painful cramping—these are just some of the many difficult symptoms that come along with inflammatory bowel disease, also known as IBD. This disorder is an umbrella term for a variety of symptoms and diagnoses, including ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease, and it impacts millions of Americans each day.

In this episode, Dr. Hyman speaks with Dr. George Papanicolaou, Dr. Miguel Reguiro, and Dr. Shilpa Ravella about the Functional Medicine approach to reducing symptoms of IBD that extend beyond medications and surgery. Dr. George Papanicolaou is a graduate of the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine and is Board Certified in Family Medicine from Abington Memorial Hospital. He is also an Institute for Functional Medicine Practitioner. Upon graduation from his residency he joined the Indian Health Service. He worked on the Navajo reservation for 4 years at the Chinle Comprehensive Medical Facility where he served as the Outpatient Department Coordinator.

In 2000, he founded Cornerstone Family Practice in Rowley, MA. He practiced with a philosophy centered on personal relationships and treating the whole person, not just not the disease. He called that philosophy “Whole Life Wellness”. Over time as the healthcare system made it harder for patients to receive this kind of personal care Dr. Papanicolaou decided a change was needed. He began training in Functional Medicine through the Institute for Functional Medicine.

In 2015, he established Cornerstone Personal Health – a practice dedicated entirely to Functional Medicine. Dr. Papanicolaou joined The UltraWellness Center in 2017. Dr. Miguel Regueiro is the chair of Cleveland Clinic’s Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology; his main clinical and research interest is IBD, with a focus on the natural course of these diseases and postoperative prevention of Crohn’s disease.

Recently, he has been involved in developing new models of healthcare, including the first-of-its kind specialty medical home for IBD. This innovative healthcare delivery system has defined the concept of specialty medical home and will lead to further clinical programs and investigation of alternative models of care. Dr. Shilpa Ravella is a gastroenterologist and Assistant Professor of Medicine at Columbia University Medical Center. She is the author of A Silent Fire: The Story of Inflammation, Diet & Disease, which investigates inflammation—the hidden force at the heart of modern disease. Her writing has appeared in The Atlantic, New York Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, TIME, Slate, Discover, and USA Today, among other publications.

Full-length episodes of these interviews can be found here:

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