Amir L. Bastawrous, M.D., M.B.A.

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Digestive Health Network Nurse Navigator receives 2015 DAISY Award

February 27, 2015

We could not be more fortunate than to have Deb Cadiente, RN, as our Nurse Navigator. Not only does she bring 40 years of nursing to our Digestive Health Network, she is truly one of the most extraordinary caring people my staff has ever worked with.

There are many patient testimonials I could provide about Deb's work, but there is one that stands out. We recently had a young adult patient in our Colon & Rectal Clinic. He had many chronic illnesses due to a rough family life and being homeless. Deb could tell this patient was cold and malnourished. She asked the patient to come back the next day and she would have a warm blanket and several other items for him. That afternoon, Deb made several phone calls to find him shelter and get him enrolled in a job-training program. With Deb’s own generosity and hard work, she was able to rally many of the Colon & Rectal Clinic staff to help this young man. He went home with shelter, a blan...

Rising Colorectal Cancer Rates in Young Adults

November 21, 2014

Most people know that colorectal screening is on the “to do” list when they reach 50 years of age, barring any high risk concern for where screening would begin earlier.  Screening saves lives and prevents many colon cancers.  With the increase in public awareness and availability of colonoscopy screening, the rates of colon and rectal cancers have been declining and survival rates increasing for people between the ages of 50 and 74. This is great news for our mature population, but a recent study indicates a concerning trend of increased risk of colorectal cancer in young people, ranging from ages 20 to 34 and 35-49 year olds. 

Fecal Incontinence: You don't have to live with it

April 12, 2013

Bowel incontinence is a socially disruptive condition. People living with incontinence often plan their daily activities around bowel movements. In some instances, fecal incontinence leads to people being homebound, fearing an accident in public. Fecal incontinence affects nearly 18% of the population. In addition, nearly 50% of people living in nursing homes are affected (ASCRS, 2011).

What Is The Cause of Fecal Incontinence?
There  can be several causes of fecal incontinence. The most common reason is damage to the anal muscle, or nerves with childbirth.

Incontinence is more common in women, but men are also affected. As women age and their tissues begin to weaken, episodes of incontinence can become problematic.

Other causes of fecal incontinence can include...

Nothing to Sneeze At: Allergy prevention and management for the whole family

April 03, 2013

“Cough, cough!” “Achooooo!” “Wheeeeeeze!” The sounds of spring are all around us and the woes of allergy season are plaguing many of us. With the weather warming, you and your loved ones are likely spending a lot of time outside. Though the stuffy nose, dry throat and scratchy eyes may seem like a seasonal nuisance you and your family just have to get through, there are solutions. Here are some tips to keep you from suffering through this beautiful but allergy-ridden time of year (to watch the video click here).

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Neuromodulation device success for patients with fecal incontinence

April 25, 2012

The Swedish Colon and Rectal Clinic successfully treated its first two patients with Medtronic’s InterStim? neuromodulation device for fecal incontinence. Both patients have already been seen in follow up with an amazing and immediate improvement. One patient in particular was previously afraid to leave the house and had daily leakage. She is thrilled with the positive outcome. Since placement of the first-stage device four days ago, she has had no leakage.

The technology involves placing a permanent generator attached to electrical wires, which are positioned near sacral nerves in the lower back. The procedure requires two stages. First the wires are placed and attached to a temporary, external test generator. Once the desired positive effect is confirmed, the permanent generator is placed.

Mercer Island Half Marathon and Colon Cancer Prevention

March 22, 2012

On Sunday, March 25, 2012, the Mercer Island Rotary Club will be hosting the 40th Annual Mercer Island Half Marathon. Children and adults of all ages participate and we anticipate more of the same this year. In addition to the half marathon race around the Island, there will also be a 10K Run, a 5K Run and Walk and a Kids’ Dash. So anyone can participate!

Swedish and the Swedish Cancer Institute are sponsors of this signature event. We are so excited to be part of this event again. One of the main purposes of the day is to rai...