Caring for children with complex bowel problems

The Paediatric Gastroenterology Service in Gloucestershire is part of a clinical network of gastroenterology teams in the South West. We work closely with our colleagues at Bristol Children’s Hospital, as well as other specialist centres such as Great Ormond Street Hospital to provide treatment and supportive care for children and young people in Gloucestershire who have complex bowel problems.

All children with coeliac disease and inflammatory bowel disease are seen by the service, as well as many children with a variety of other bowel problems.

“Tummy problems” are very common in childhood, and not every child needs to come to a specialist clinic. All paediatricians look after children with tummy problems in their general paediatric clinics, but can refer onto the more specialist clinics, or seek advice from Dr Rushforth, if they feel it is necessary. 

We have very close links with our paediatric dieticians and the adult gastroenterology team as well as paediatric gastroenterologists in other hospitals. 

How do I refer my child to the service?

Children and young people are referred to us by their GP, another paediatrician or a gastroenterology specialist working in another hospital. 

How do young patients transition to adult services?

Children and young people are usually transitioned to adult services between the ages of 16 and 17, and this usually happens after they have taken their GCSEs. We talk about transition regularly in outpatients clinics and make sure the concept is introduced and understood well before it happens.   

Children with inflammatory bowel disease may meet one of the adult IBD specialist nurses with Dr Rushforth in the paediatric clinic a few times before they are fully transitioned to adult care. A joint adolescent/adult transition clinic with both Dr Rushforth and Dr Shaw (adult gastroenterologist) present ensures smooth handover of care for these patients from paediatrics to adult services.  

Our team

Dr Alison Rushforth: 0300 422 8494

Deborah Dillon (Secretary): 0300 422 8494