The Gastrointestinal System (GI) is made up of the gastrointestinal tract along with the accessory organs. The GI tract is a long hollow tube which extends from the oral cavity where food enters the body through the esophagus, stomach, small intestine, large intestine, rectum, and ends at the anus where the undigested food is expelled. Salivary glands, pancreas, and the liver are the accessory organs. They secrete enzymes which are essential for digestion. Gallbladder, which secretes bile, is also a part of the GI system.

The process of digestion starts when you eat or drink and ends with your body expelling undigested food. In between this process, the organs of the GI system work to break down the food and absorb the nutrients and expel the unwanted or undigested food from the body. This function is impaired in people with gastrointestinal disorders due to various causes which may result in loss of nutrients. Some of the common gastrointestinal problems are:


Constipation is a common gastrointestinal disorder. Constipation causes strain or difficulty in bowel movement. It may be caused by lack of required fiber in the diet. It can cause hard stools which may be painful. Although it is not a sign of a serious medical condition, it can cause notable discomfort.


Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a condition which causes an irritable digestive tract. People with IBS suffer from discomfort or pain in the stomach at least three times a month. The colon muscle of people with IBS contracts more often than normal causing discomfort. The exact reason for IBS is not known. It may be caused by a certain type of food, medication, or emotional stress.


IBD is a disorder in which the body’s immune system attacks the GI tract as an autoimmune response which leads to inflammation of the GI tract. Common forms of IBD are ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease. This can lead to infection of GI tract and ulcers.


GERD is a condition where the stomach acid backs up into the esophagus causing an acid reflux or hurt burn. This can be due to weakening or relaxing of the muscle between the esophagus and the stomach. Although, experiencing a heartburn or acid reflux once in a while is common, having symptoms that affect your daily life is a problem. You need to consult a doctor as it could be a sign of GERD.


Diarrhoea is a common digestive problem which causes loose, watery stools occurring more than three times a day. Diarrhoea generally lasts for about 2 days and becomes normal on its own. It can cause severe dehydration and tiredness. If the diarrhoea lasts for more than 2 days, you need to see a doctor.


Gallstones are small hard deposits which form in the gallbladder. They can cause sharp pain when they block the ducts leading from the gallbladder to intestines. Gallstones can form when the gallbladder doesn’t empty properly or when there is too much cholesterol or waste in your bile.


People with Celiac disease have a sensitivity to gluten. When people with celiac disease gluten, the body’s own immune system attacks, and damages the villi in the intestines which are essential to absorb nutrients. Avoiding gluten and using other food alternatives are recommended.


Inflammation of blood vessels at the end of the digestive tract is called hemorrhoids. Blood in the fecal matter is a common symptom. It can be painful and itchy. An inadequate fiber in the diet can be a cause for hemorrhoids.


Tiny, oval-shaped tears present in the lining of the end of the digestive tract are called anal fissures. The symptoms of anal fissures are similar to hemorrhoids, such as Bleeding and pain after bowel movements.

Be Well Hospitals are one of the leading Multispeciality Hospitals located around Tamil Nadu. Our team of experienced doctors and nurses provide the best care offering all-around medical support to our patients making it one of the best hospital in Chennai. With the best gastro surgeons in Chennai, Be Well is the best place to treat your gastrointestinal problems.

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