User Name


forgot my credentials 
create account  [Close]


Press Release

NASPGHAN and ASGE Sponsor First Joint Therapeutic
Pediatric Endoscopy Course


OAK BROOK, Ill. – October 8, 2008 –  Recently, the North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition (NASPGHAN) and the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ASGE) sponsored their first joint therapeutic pediatric endoscopy course held at ASGE’s Institute for Training & Technology in Oak Brook, Ill. The course sold out, drawing 60 participating pediatric endoscopists from across the country to the specialized training center near Chicago.

Course directors, Jenifer Lightdale, MD, Children’s Hospital Boston, and Petar Mamula, MD, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, along with a team of nine senior endoscopists, covered topics to address the needs of established pediatric endoscopists who were interested in improving their knowledge of familiar and new endoscopic techniques. The course placed an emphasis on the specialized use of therapeutic endoscopic techniques and instruments in infants and children, including both the limitations and potential applications of advanced or unique techniques in pediatric patients.

“Preliminary feedback on the course has indicated that it was a great success and we’re delighted by the sold out attendance,” said course co-director Jenifer Lightdale, MD. “We were able to cover a variety of specialized techniques through presentations and roundtable discussions, but most importantly, through hands-on instruction which was extremely well received by attendees.”

Endoscopy in children is most commonly used to diagnose and treat conditions such as gastroesophageal reflux disease, peptic ulcer disease, inflammatory bowel disease, gastrointestinal bleeding, congenital anomalies and foreign body ingestion. Currently, there are more than 1,500 specially-trained and credentialed pediatric gastroenterologists performing endoscopic procedures in pediatric patients in the United States, Canada and Mexico in children as young as newborn and premature infants. Many of these children have comorbid conditions such as underlying cardiac, liver, oncologic or neurologic disease that place them at risk for more severe gastrointestinal disease and the development of complications such as GI bleeding. As the number of pediatric patients with these complex conditions has increased, so has the need for advanced training in therapeutic endoscopy specially tailored for this age group. Therapeutic endoscopy is also used to treat healthy children who develop GI problems.

According to course faculty member and ASGE spokesperson Marsha Kay, MD, FASGE, Children’s Hospital Cleveland Clinic, “more than 100,000 accidental foreign body ingestions occur annually in the Unites States in children younger than 19 years of age, of which an estimated 10,000 to 20,000 require endoscopic removal to avoid complications.”

The objectives of the course were for participants to have an understanding of the basic principles and practice of therapeutic endoscopy in children; to be able to identify and properly use endoscopic therapeutic equipment key to each procedure; and employ basic skills to perform effective and safe therapeutic pediatric endoscopy. Attendees specifically learned about hemostasis: heater/bipolar probes, clipping techniques, argon plasma coagulation, variceal banding and sclerotherapy. In addition, saline assisted polypectomy, balloon dilation, video capsule deployment, wireless pH probe placement, and foreign body removal were also covered.

Plans are underway for repeating the course in 2009.  Additional information can be found at as it becomes available.

For more information on ASGE-sponsored courses, contact ASGE at 630-573-0600 or go to

ASGE Institute for Training & Technology (IT & T)
The IT&T Center is a fully operational ex-vivo endoscopy lab, equipped with endoscopic workstations and capsule endoscopy workstations. Using the latest medical equipment and technologically advanced endoscopes, cameras, video imaging and computers, the Center faculty engages the participant in a hands-on educational format.


About North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition
The mission of the North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition is
to be a world leader in advancing the science and clinical practice of pediatric gastroenterology,
hepatology and nutrition in health and disease.

About the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy
Founded in 1941, the mission of the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy is to be the leader in advancing patient care and digestive health by promoting excellence in gastrointestinal endoscopy. ASGE, with more than 10,000 physician members worldwide, promotes the highest standards for endoscopic training and practice, fosters endoscopic research, recognizes distinguished contributions to endoscopy, and is the foremost resource for endoscopic education. Visit and for more information.

About Endoscopy
Endoscopy is performed by specially-trained physicians called endoscopists using the most current technology to diagnose and treat diseases of the gastrointestinal tract. Using flexible, thin tubes called endoscopes, endoscopists are able to access the human digestive tract without incisions via natural orifices. Endoscopes are designed with high-intensity lighting and fitted with precision devices that allow viewing and treatment of the gastrointestinal system.