Eosinophilic esophagitis, also known as EoE is the chronic inflammation of the esophagus caused by food allergies. Diagnosis of EoE can only be made after a biopsy, a tiny tissue sample take from the esophagus, shows increased numbers of eosinophils, a type of white blood cell associated with allergies. The inflammation can cause a number of vague symptoms including abdominal pain, reflux like symptoms, and swallowing or feeding problems.
EoE is one of several eosinophilic gastrointestinal disorders (EGID) that can affect other parts of the gastrointestinal tract:
EoE is called an allergen-mediated disease, meaning it is caused by exposure to certain foods in a predisposed person. The reaction happens much like when a person develops seasonal allergies after exposure to a particular allergen like pollen, dust or mold. Genetics likely contribute to the development of EoE because EoE, like other allergen mediated diseases, often affects more than one family member.
EoE can occur in both children and adults. It usually affects boys more often than girls. EoE can run in families. For instance, it is not unusual for a parent or other relative to have a history of food getting stuck in the esophagus, swallowing problems or esophageal dilations.
The Gastrointestinal Eosinophilic Diseases Program (GEDP) provides state-of-the-art, multidisciplinary care to patients affected by eosinophilic gastrointestinal diseases (EGIDs), including eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE).
Our team of medical professionals conducts leading-edge research to improve the future for kids with EGIDs. Plus, we are one of the few programs in the country to include feeding specialists and behavioral health professionals in a team approach of treating children with EGIDs. We gladly accept referrals from across the nation.
We provide patients and families with the latest in clinical services -- ranging from endoscopic assessment to allergy testing, and in some circumstances, novel treatment protocols. 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 GEDP team also conducts innovative research focusing on eosinophils’ impact on the gastrointestinal tract. Studies center on the mechanisms that eosinophils relate to resident cells of the intestinal tract and how these relationships contribute to host health and disease.
Parents also seek out our care because we are the only multidisciplinary program for children with EGIDs in the midwestern United States and Rocky Mountain region.
F. Dan Atkins, MD, Co-Director of the Program, brings both clinical expertise and research experience in food allergy to the team.
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.
Elizabeth Cronkrite, BSN, RN, is a pediatric GI nurse who brings inpatient nursing experience to provide excellent care with the GEDP team at Children’s Hospital Colorado.
Jennifer Natale, BSN, RN, CPN, is a Co-Program Coordinator of the GEDP. She is a Certified Pediatric Nurse and Allergy Nurse who performs nursing assessments, education and carries out diagnostic testing based on provider recommendations for gastrointestinal diseases, food allergies and intolerances.
Stephanie Skirka, RN, BSN, is a Co-Program Coordinator of the GEDP. She has over 25 years of pediatric nursing experience. Her broad nursing experience provides comprehensive care for patients with Eosinophilic GI Diseases.
Kathy Spomer, RN, BSN, has over 25 years of experienced caring for children with allergies and asthma in outpatient clinics at Children's Hospital Colorado.
Taryn Brennan, RD, is a pediatric clinical dietitian whose work focuses on nutrition assessment and medical nutrition therapy for children with Eosinophilic GI Diseases, food allergies and food intolerances.
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 Eosinophilic GI Diseases 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 especially as they relate to Eosinophilic GI Diseases.
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 and has outstanding clinical experience with Eosinophilic GI Diseases.
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 Eosinophilic GI Diseases, as well as, participates in research and presentations.
The mission of the Gastrointestinal Eosinophilic Diseases Program is to improve the quality of life for patients and families affected by EGIDs. Our team offers comprehensive evaluation for patients suspected of having EGIDs and for children who have a previously established diagnosis. Patients referred to the program will receive:
Children’s Hospital Colorado, Anschutz Medical Campus
13123 E 16th Ave, Aurora, CO 80045
From the main entrance, take glass elevator to 2nd Floor
We offer free parking to families who have an appointment. There is complimentary valet parking in front of the main hospital.
If you are coming to our clinic your child has already been diagnosed with an EGID (Eosinophilic Gastrointestinal Disease). Your child will be scheduled with our team which will consist of a Gastroenterologist, Allergist, Feeding specialist, Dietitian, and Behavioral Health Specialist.
The appointment is approximately 3-4 hours long so please bring books, coloring books, or an electronic device to help entertain your child during this visit (we do have free wi-fi). Your child may have a series of testing (radiology studies, blood draws, skin prick testing, etc.) completed during or after your visit so please prepare your child.
If you feel that your child will not do well with any of the possible testing please let us know before hand and we can have our child life specialist available to assist during your visit.