Gastroenterology is the medical Speciality specialising in bowel, liver and nutritional problems. It encompasses many multi-organ disorders specifically inflammatory bowel disease, gastrointestinal cancers and many liver problems.

Training to be a gastroenterologist therefore involves clinical experience in these problems in both and teaching and district general hospitals. Gastroenterologists provide the majority of endoscopy services including Gastroscopy, Colonoscopy, ERCP and EUS. 

Therefore training to be a gastroenterologist involves becoming proficient in Gastroscopy and Colonoscopy and will provide exposure to other procedures. Gastroenterologists usually cover “bleeding rotas” and therefore it is vital for trainees to learn how to manage acute upper gastrointestinal bleeding and to provide endoscopic treatment.

Gastroenterologists spend their time split between ward based care, outpatient clinics and endoscopy.

Gastroenterologists may be classified according to sub-specialty e.g. Hepatologist, Luminal Gastroenterologist, Advanced Endoscopist.

The majority of Gastroenterologists also train in general medicine. This involves general medicine on calls and the vast range of experience gained from being part of a general medical take.

Essential Qualifications
MRCP (or equivalent from outside UK)

Two years general professional training to include at least 18 months of general medicine of which six months must have included unselected take.

Research papers, honours and awards and higher degrees help onto short-lists.

Personal Qualities

  • Stability under clinical stress

  • Flexibility

  • Work well in a team

  • A degree of manual dexterity is required

  • Interest in minor surgery