Digestive Disorders Center

Gastrointestinal (GI) Program


Leading-Edge Care

Leading-edge care for digestive system disorders

Gastrointestinal problems are common, but they should never be ignored. Even minor problems can lead to more serious issues, like Crohn’s disease, gallstones, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) or ulcers, unless they are diagnosed and treated early.

Be aware of symptoms

The symptoms of gastrointestinal conditions can come and go. They may even be subtle. Be aware of the most common symptoms:

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, talk to your doctor. Once your problem is identified, your doctor can discuss treatment options for digestive disorders. Northwest Community Healthcare will be here to support you, every step of the way.

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Multidisciplinary Team of Gastroenterology Experts

The Gastrointestinal Program at NCH is staffed with nationally-recognized gastroenterologists, highly-skilled nurses and technologists. Together, they perform more than 16,000 gastrointestinal procedures annually, including more than 8,000 colonoscopies, while providing comfort, convenience and privacy. Patient navigators provide individual care coordination, education and support to assist you throughout your diagnosis and treatment process.

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Accurate diagnoses. Safer and more comfortable.

M2A Capsule Enteroscopy

A very small, pill-sized camera is swallowed to painlessly transmit digital images from the digestive tract. The capsule monitors and reports acid levels in the esophagus without a catheter.


One of the most effective ways to prevent colorectal cancer or detect it in the early and most treatable stages. Recommended for adults age 50 and older and in young people with a family history of colorectal cancer. Read more.

Additional diagnostic tests

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Cutting-edge treatments for a full range of GI conditions

HALO360 Ablation System Innovative

This non-surgical treatment for Barrett's esophagus, a pre-cancerous condition affecting the lining of the esophagus, uses radiofrequency electrodes to remove or destroy pre-cancerous cells, which reduces the risk of developing esophageal cancer.

Virtual Colonoscopy (CT Colonography)

CT colonography uses CT scanning to obtain an interior view of the colon (the large intestine) that is otherwise only seen with a more invasive procedure where an endoscope is inserted into the rectum.

CyberKnife® Stereotactic Radiosurgery System (SRS)

NCH offers the latest technology in radiation treatment for patients without other options. CyberKnife is a radiation treatment that shrinks and destroys tumors once considered inoperable, with accurate precision, via non-invasive surgery. It offers comfortable, quick and painless treatment plans. NCH was the first health system in the Chicago area to offer CyberKnife treatments and has the longest running CyberKnife program.

Advanced Endoscopic Retrograde Cholangiopancreatography

Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) is a technique that uses a combination of luminal endoscopy and fluoroscopic imaging to diagnose and treat conditions associated with the pancreatobiliary system.

NCH Team Member

Willis Parsons, M.D.

Dr. Parsons is the medical director of Northwest Community Healthcare’s Digestive Disorders Center. He specializes in advanced interventional GI procedures and the management of pancreaticobiliary disease. Dr. Parsons completed his residency and fellowship at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, followed by an interventional endoscopy fellowship with Douglas Howell, M.D., at Maine Medical Center in Portland. He has directed more than 150 live endoscopy courses and has been published extensively.

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Nikos G. Christopoulos, M.D.

Chief of Gastroenterology, Dr. Christopoulos is a board-certified gastroenterologist. He completed his residency and fellowship training at The University of Illinois at Chicago and has been affiliated with Northwest Community Healthcare since 2008.

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Kathy Quinlan, R.N., B.S., M.B.A.

Quinlan has been Executive Director of the Gastroenterology Program at Northwest Community Healthcare since 1994. She graduated from National Louis University with a bachelor's degree in healthcare leadership and a master's degree in business administration.

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