The Gastrointestinal Eosinophilic Diseases Program (GEDP) at Children's Hospital Colorado provides state-of-the-art, multidisciplinary care to patients affected by eosinophilic gastrointestinal diseases (EGIDs), including eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE).
EGIDs are a group of diseases characterized by a wide variety of gastrointestinal symptoms including vomiting, swallowing problems, food impaction, abdominal pain, diarrhea, slow growth, and bleeding. These symptoms occur in combination with increased numbers of eosinophils in the gastrointestinal lining. Eosinophils are a type of white blood cell that has been primarily associated with allergic diseases but are also found in other diseases.
Depending on the part of the gastrointestinal tract affected, EGIDs can be called a variety of different names, such as eosinophilic esophagitis (EE), eosinophilic gastritis (EG), eosinophilic gastroenteritis (EGE), and eosinophilic colitis (EC), with the diagnostic term being based primarily on the location of the mucosal eosinophilia.
Physicians classify the disease according to the body tissue where the eosinophils accumulate. Each type of the disease requires long-term treatment. There is no cure for EGID.
- Eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE) is the most common type of EGID, where there are large numbers of eosinophils found in the esophagus. The esophagus is the tube that carries food from the mouth to the stomach.
- Eosinophilic gastroenteritis (EG) and eosinophilic enteritis (EE) affects the stomach and/or the small intestine.
- Eosinophilic colitis (EC) is the rarest form of the disease and describes the occurrence of high levels of eosinophils in the large intestine.
EGID can affect people of all ages and ethnic backgrounds, although there appear to be sex and genetic factors associated with the disease. Research has found that 75% of individuals with EoE are male and 70-80% have associated allergic disorders such as asthma, eczema, and seasonal and/or food allergies.
Patients and families are provided with the latest in clinical services ranging from endoscopic assessment, allergy testing, and in some circumstances, novel treatment protocols. Importantly, a wide range of clinical research projects are being conducted to uncover new knowledge and improve patient care. Interested patients are offered the opportunity to participate in any protocol.
Our Gastrointestinal Eosinophilic Diseases Program (GEDP) team at Children's Hospital Colorado includes gastroenterologists, allergists, dieticians, a clinical social worker and nurse practitioners.
Meet our Team
F. Dan Atkins, MD, Co-Director of the Program, brings both clinical expertise and research experience in food allergy to the team.
Kelley E. Capocelli, MD, is a pediatric pathologist who has worked with the Gastrointestinal Eosinophilic Diseases Program since 2008. She reviews outside biopsies of children prior to their visits to Children's Hospital of Colorado.
Maureen S. Egan, MD, is a pediatric allergy & immunologist who treats children with a variety of allergic conditions with a focus in food allergy and eosinophilic esophagitis.
Glenn T. Furuta, MD, Director of the Program, is a pediatric gastroenterologist whose work focuses on identifying clinical features of EGIDs and developing methods for patient assessment and treatment.
Pooja Mehta, MD, MSci, is a pediatric gastroenterologist whose work focuses on identifying barriers to adherence and using mobile health technology to improve care.
Calies Menard-Katcher, MD, is a pediatric gastroenterologist whose work focuses on the natural history of EoE, particularly with attention to development of abnormal esophageal function and structure.
Nathalie Nguyen, MD, is a pediatric gastroenterologist who treats children with a variety of gastrointestinal conditions with a particular focus in eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE) and eosinophilic gastrointestinal diseases (EGIDs).
Jane Robinson, MS, PhD, is a psychosocial clinician for the program, is a specialized Clinical Pediatric Psychologist whose work focuses on the identification and treatment of comorbid psychological factors associated with a diagnosis of EGIDs.
Beth Estey, RN, BSN, is a pediatric allergy nurse who works with the GEDP team to provide the best possible care for her patients.
Jennifer Natale, BSN, RN, CPN, is a Certified Pediatric Nurse and Allergy Nurse performs nursing assessments, education and carries out diagnostic testing based on provider recommendations for gastrointestinal diseases, food allergies and intolerances.
JoAnne Newton, RN, BS, CGRN, is a registered nurse with over 25 years of pediatric experience. She holds a certification in gastroenterology nursing. She joined the GEDP IN 2009 where she has served as the Program Coordinator for the GEDP. In this role, she provides centralized care for children and their families before, during and after their visits to Children's Hospital of Colorado.
Stephanie Skirka, RN, BSN, has over 25 years of pediatric nursing experience. She joined the Gastrointestinal Eosinophilic Diseases Program in 2015. Her years prior to joining the GEDP was spent working with pediatric patients in a general GI and surgical setting. Her nursing experience allows her to comprehensively care for patients with GI Eosinophilic Diseases.
Kathy Spomer, RN, BSN, with over 25 years of experienced caring for children with allergies and asthma in outpatient clinics at Children's Hospital Colorado.
Gina Urbine, RN, BSN, AE-C, provides care for the outpatient allergy and asthma patients seen at Children's Hospital Colorado.
Dietitians and Therapists
Taryn Brennan, RD, is a pediatric clinical dietitian whose work focuses on nutrition assessment and medical nutrition therapy for children with gastrointestinal disease, food allergies and food intolerances.
Nancy Creskoff Maune, OTR, is a pediatric occupational therapist (OT) with over 20 years of clinical experience who specializes in the evaluation and treatment of infants and children with feeding and swallowing issues. She is an Advanced Practitioner for the Feeding and Swallowing Program at Children's Hospital Colorado.
Kristin Crinion MS, OTR/L, is an occupational therapist and feeding specialist. Works with the pediatric population who have feeding and swallowing difficulties specifically related to EOE and food allergies.
Angela Haas, MA, CCC-SLP, is a speech-language pathologist and feeding specialist with 20 years of experience in the assessment and treatment of pediatric feeding and swallowing disorders. Her areas of clinical expertise include behavioral, oral motor, and oral sensory feeding disorders, swallow dysfunction, mealtime dynamics, and communication.
Kelly Klaczkiewicz, RD, CSP, is a pediatric dietitian accredited by the Commission on Dietetic Registration since 2002, has been with Children's Hospital Colorado since 2012. Kelly cares for a variety of patients seen within the Digestive Health Institute.
Holly Knotowicz, M.S., CCC-SLP, is a speech pathologist and feeding specialist with over 7 years of experience in the assessment and treatment of pediatric feeding and swallowing disorders. Her areas of clinical expertise include behavioral, oral motor, and oral sensory feeding disorders, mealtime dynamics and communication. She has also helped develop alternative therapy interventions such as telepractice, feeding groups and camp for children with EoE, as well as, participates in research and presentations.
The team of board-certified doctors, nurses and staff deliver the best quality care and clinical services available for patients and their families. These include:
- Medical evaluation, testing and diagnosis, and expert care from doctors who are board- certified in pediatrics medicine.
- State-of-the-art clinic and facilities to ensure patient safety and comfort.
- Development of individual care plans to meet each food allergy patient's needs.
- Multidisciplinary eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE) clinic in conjunction with the Children's Hospital Colorado pediatric gastroenterology department.
- Coordinated care with pediatricians, referring doctors and/or other specialists.
- Assistance with school planning and accommodations from a specialized food allergy nurse.
- Nutritional guidance available from a registered dietictian.
- Individual and family counseling available from a licensed social worker.
Related Websites and Additional Information
Visit our web page at Children's Hospital Colorado website for more information about our Clinical Services at Children's Colorado.
Visit the Consortium of Eosinophilic Gastrointestinal Disease Researchers (CEGIR) website for information about ongoing research studies and to join the Contact Registry for patients with eosinophilic gastrointestinal diseases.