Karlee J. Ausk, MD

  • Gastroenterology
Accepting New Patients
5350 Tallman Ave. NW
Suite 520
Seattle, WA 98107
1221 Madison St.
Suite 1220
Seattle, WA 98104

General Information

Dr. Ausk attended medical school at the University of Washington, where she also completed Internal Medicine residency, chief residency, and fellowship in Gastroenterology and Hepatology. She practices general gastroenterology and hepatology with a particular interest in inflammatory bowel disease and colorectal cancer screening. She believes that healthcare providers have the privilege of accompanying patients and their families through the often stressful times brought on by an illness. She strives to guide patients in making healthcare decisions considering the best evidence available tailored to their individual story.
  • Gastroenterology
Education Background
Medical School: University of Washington School of Medicine
Residency: Internal Medicine, University of Washington
Fellowship: Gastroenterology and Hepatology, University of Washington
  • English
Personal Interests
When not at work, Dr. Ausk is usually spending time with her husband and two young children. She also enjoys cooking, dining out, running, reading, and attending Husky sporting events.



5 fast facts about ulcerative colitis

February 10, 2016

In January, the world mourned the loss of Glenn Frey, founding member of the Eagles. He reportedly battled two autoimmune diseases, rheumatoid arthritis and ulcerative colitis, for years before his death. Questions since have swirled in the media about these diseases. Here are five fast facts about ulcerative colitis from specialist Karlee Ausk, M.D.

Recommended vaccinations for those with IBD

February 04, 2015

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a persistent inflammatory condition of the gastrointestinal system affecting over one million Americans. Treatment of IBD often requires altering a patient’s immune response and can increase the risk for infectious complications. To help prevent this, the American Gastroenterological Association and the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation have published immunization guidelines for IBD patients. Despite these recommendations, less than half of IBD patients are up-to-date on their recommended immunizations. Studies show that the most common reason for missing vaccinations is the lack of awareness that immunizations are safe and recommended.

If you are immune-suppressed, inactivated vaccines are safe and should be given. I would recommend:

Gluten allergy: myth or fact?

November 20, 2013

Gluten is a hot topic these days, and is hitting the headlines again. Why? At the American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology annual meeting, Dr. David Stukus (a pediatric allergist) set out to clarify frequent myths that he encounters in his practice.  So, why is he saying that gluten allergies do not exist?

Gluten is a protein found in foods processed from wheat and related grain products.  In celiac sprue (affecting up to 1% of adults), gluten intake leads to damage of the small intestine, impairing its ability to absorb nutrients.  I like to imagine that a healthy small intestine is like a shag carpet, and small intestine affected by active celiac sprue is more like a tile floor.  Celiac sprue is not a gluten allergy, but rather an autoimmune condition where the gluten is trigger...

Colorectal Cancer Prevention

March 18, 2013

In March, we commemorate National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month.

To do so, we take the time to recognize the second leading cause of cancer death in the United States. We honor loved ones who have been affected by colorectal cancer and raise awareness about colorectal cancer with the hopes to decrease the number of people dying from this disease.

What causes colorectal cancer?

There are a variety of genetic and environmental factors that contribute to the development of colon polyps. Only a small fraction of adenomatous colon polyps develop into colorectal cancer, but nearly all colorectal cancers arise from an adenomatous polyp. The role of colonoscopy is to identify and eradicate any adenomatous polyps so as to minimize future risk of colorectal cancer.

Several studies show that obesity increases your risk of developing colorectal cancer by 1.5 times. Cigarette smoking and moderate-to-heavy alcohol use also increase colorectal cancer risk. Th...

What is Gastroenteritis?

March 04, 2013

This past week, Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II was hospitalized with a “stomach bug”. Gastroenteritis (also called the “stomach flu”) is the second most common illness in the United States. So, chances are good that your family has been affected by gastroenteritis already this year!

What are the symptoms of gastroenteritis?
Gastroenteritis is inflammation of the stomach and intestines causing symptoms of diarrhea, vomiting, cramping, and fever. If a person is not able to keep up with fluid losses from diarrhea and vomiting, then they can become dehydrated. Gastroenteritis occurs year-round and affects people of all ages. Those who are young, old, or have a suppressed immune system are more susceptible to severe gastroenteritis and to dehydration.

What causes gastroenteritis?
The majority of cases are caused by a viral infection (occasionally, a bacterial infection) transmitted through contact with another sick...

Make a new year's resolution to be screened for colorectal cancer

December 26, 2012

We have come upon the time of year when we reflect back on the events of 2012 and look forward to new beginnings in 2013. About 45% of Americans make New Year’s resolutions every year and frequently these resolutions are health-related.

Why not let 2013 be the year you resolve to be updated on colorectal cancer screening?

Why should I worry about colorectal cancer?

Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in the United States. The average lifetime risk of developing colorectal cancer is about 5%. In the colon, cancer usually arises over time from abnormal polyps, called adenomas. This provides us the rare and life-saving opportunity to intervene and remove polyps to prevent cancer from developing. Pre-cancerous polyps or early cancers do not always cause symptoms, highlighting the need for routine screening.

Simply stated, there are large studies showing that screening for colorectal cancer prevents cancer. Screeni...

Clinical Experience

  • Gastroenterology
Services Provided
Clinical Interests
  • abdominal pain
  • abnormal amylase
  • abnormal bowel movement
  • abnormal liver function
  • abnormal stool
  • achalasia
  • acute pancreatitis
  • allergic colitis
  • allergic esophagitis
  • allergic gastroenteritis
  • altered bowel habits
  • anal fissure
  • anal fistula
  • anal pain
  • anal polyp
  • anal spasm
  • anal stenosis
  • anal ulcer
  • anorectal disease
  • anorexia
  • appetite loss
  • autoimmune enteropathy
  • barretts esophagus
  • biliary atresia
  • biliary cirrhosis
  • biologic therapy for gastrointestinal diseases
  • bleeding hemorrhoids
  • blood in stool
  • bright red blood per rectum
  • celiac disease
  • choking sensation
  • cholangitis
  • cholecystitis
  • cholelithiasis
  • cholestasis
  • chronic diarrhea
  • chronic pancreatitis
  • cirrhosis
  • clostridium difficile
  • colitis
  • colonic polyps
  • colonoscopy
  • colorectal screening
  • constipation
  • crigler najjar syndrome
  • cyclic vomiting syndrome
  • cystic fibrosis - gi complications
  • diverticular disease
  • diverticulitis
  • diverticulosis
  • duodenal ulcer
  • duodenitis
  • dysphagia
  • elevated amylase
  • end stage liver disease
  • endoscopy
  • eosinophilic esophagitis
  • eructation
  • esophageal disorder
  • esophageal mass
  • esophageal ulcer
  • esophageal varices
  • esophagitis
  • fatty liver
  • fecal impaction
  • fecal incontinence
  • feeding problems
  • flatulence
  • gallbladder disease
  • gallbladder polyp
  • gastric anomaly
  • gastric ulcer
  • gastritis
  • gastroesophageal reflux disease
  • gastrointestinal bleeding
  • gastrointestinal cancer
  • gastroparesis
  • giardiasis
  • gluten sensitivity
  • graft versus host disease
  • helicobacter pylori
  • helminthiasis
  • hematemesis
  • hematochezia
  • hemorrhoids
  • hemorrhoids with complications
  • hepatorenal syndrome
  • hereditary nonpolyposis colorectal cancer
  • hiatal hernia
  • hirschsprungs disease
  • hydrops of gallbladder
  • idiopathic megacolon
  • ileitis
  • ileoscopy
  • inflammatory bowel disease
  • intestinal atresia
  • intestinal obstruction
  • intestinal pseudo-obstruction
  • intractable vomiting
  • intussusception
  • irritable bowel syndrome
  • lactose intolerance
  • liver biopsy
  • liver disease
  • malabsorption
  • malignant neoplasm of liver
  • malnutrition
  • meckel's diverticulum
  • megacolon
  • megarectum
  • melena
  • nausea
  • obstipation
  • odynophagia
  • pancreatic insufficiency
  • pancreatitis
  • peptic ulcer
  • peritonitis
  • polyposis syndrome
  • polyps
  • portal hypertensive gastropathy
  • primary biliary cirrhosis
  • proctosigmoidoscopy
  • rectal bleeding
  • rectal fistula
  • rectal hemorrhage
  • rectal pain
  • rectal polyp
  • regional enteritis
  • right lower quadrant pain
  • right upper quadrant pain
  • severe diarrhea
  • short bowel syndrome
  • small bowel disease
  • stomach cancer
  • stomach cramps
  • stomach pain
  • swallowing problem
  • tenesmus
  • traveler's diarrhea
  • ulcerative colitis
  • vomiting
  • whipple disease
5350 Tallman Ave. NW
Suite 520
Seattle, WA 98107
1221 Madison St.
Suite 1220
Seattle, WA 98104