Children's Hospital Colorado

Digestive Health Institute Education Videos

Doctor high-fiving her patient. Best Children's Hospital by US News Card Gastroenterology 2020-1 Badge

Our Digestive Health Institute physicians provide innovative diagnostic and therapeutic approaches in all aspects of pediatric gastrointestinal (GI), liver, pancreatic and nutritional disorders. We’re committed to improving the health, care and quality of life for children and adolescents with digestive health conditions in the region and nationally.

One of the ways we commit to improving the digestive health of all children is by sharing our novel approaches to care with other providers so they can improve care in their own communities. In the following videos, our providers will discuss groundbreaking digestive health research, diagnosis, treatment and more. Watch the provider education videos below to learn from our GI, hepatology and nutrition experts.

AASLD 2019 practice guidance and guidelines for autoimmune hepatitis

Autoimmune hepatitis (AIH) is an autoimmune-mediated attack of the liver cells, with a prevalence of 3 out of 100,000 cases among children. In 2018 and 2019, adult and pediatric hepatologists convened to work on updating the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD) Practice Guidelines for the diagnosis and management of autoimmune hepatitis. These recently released guidelines are the first adult and pediatric combined guidelines for AASLD. Cara L. Mack, MD, Medical Director of the Pediatric Liver Center, chaired this initiative.

In this video, Dr. Mack reviews the 2019 AASLD guidelines, which include recommendations for the most effective first-line treatment therapies for AIH, use of second-line therapies and long-term use of steroids after liver transplant for AIH. She also discusses future directions and unmet needs for the management of AIH as well as potential future therapies.

Higher mortality in pediatric liver transplant candidates with sarcopenia

Sarcopenia is a loss of muscle mass and function that occurs in aging as well as in other disease states, including chronic liver disease. There is abundant data on how muscle mass affects outcomes in adult liver transplants. However, data on the role of sarcopenia in pediatric liver disease remain limited. Due to various issues with the markers of liver disease severity in children, there is an urgent need to identify additional markers to determine which children with end-stage liver disease are at highest risk.

In this video, Julia Boster, MD, Fellow in Pediatric Transplant Hepatology, discusses a study on the role of muscle wasting in children with liver disease, specifically how and why it occurs and how it affects outcomes in children who require liver transplantation. Watch to learn about the research study methods, results and conclusions.

The creatine transporter is necessary for intestinal cell function and altered in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) can affect any part of the digestive system and is associated with a weakened intestinal barrier. In a recent study published by Digestive Health Institute, researchers found that creatine regulates energy distribution within intestinal epithelial cells (IECs) and reduces the severity of colitis in mice.

Pediatric gastroenterologist Caroline Hall, MD, PhD, discusses her investigation into the functions of the creatine transporter (CRT), in IECs and maintenance of the intestinal epithelial barrier. In an analysis of IEC cell lines and colonoids from CRT knockout mice, Dr. Hall and her team found CRT regulates energy balance in IECs, along with epithelial integrity and barrier function. Mucosal biopsies from patients with IBD have lower levels of CRT, which may contribute to the reduced barrier function observed in patients with Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis.