Remembering the Work of Dr. Leonidas Berry

Berry receives the Rush Distinguished Alumnus Award in 1987.

By Nathalie Wheaton and Rene Ruzicka

Gastroenterologist Leonidas H. Berry was born in 1902 in Woodsdale, North Carolina. He earned his M.D. from Rush Medical College in 1929, when Rush was affiliated with  the University of Chicago. In 1933, he received his M.S. degree in pathology from the University of Illinois Medical School. He was the first black physician appointed to the medical attending staffs at Cook County Hospital and Michael Reese Hospital.

Berry offered contributions in the field of gastroenterology, including the creation of the Eder-Berry biopsy gastroscope in 1955. He set up one of the first gastroscopy clinics in the United States while serving as chairperson of the Gastroenterology Division of Provident Hospital. And he was the first American physician to use the fiber-optic gastro-camera.

He authored almost a hundred articles and contributed to 12 books and monographs, including the comprehensive textbook Gastrointestinal Pan-Endoscopy. Additionally, he authored a genealogical history of his family entitled, I Wouldn’t Take Nothin’ For My Journey: Two Centuries of an Afro-American Minister’s Family, which was published in 1982. Continue reading

Managing Stress and Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Exercise, relaxation and breathing exercises, yoga and meditation are common stress management techniques when dealing with inflammatory bowel disease.

Exercise, relaxation and breathing exercises, yoga and meditation are common stress management techniques.

By Sharon Jedel, PsyD

Here are 10 tips for managing stress and IBD from Sharon Jedel, a psychologist with the Section of Gastroenterology and Nutrition at Rush University Medical Center.

1. Identify and manage major stressors in your daily life. While stress does not cause inflammatory bowel disease, research has demonstrated that it may trigger flare-up. It is therefore important to recognize what causes significant stress in your life and take action to decrease these stressors.

2. Reach out to family and friends for ongoing social support. Do not isolate!

3. Educate yourself about your disease. The more you know about your IBD, the more you can advocate for yourself. Stay informed about new developments in treatment, including medications.

4. Find a doctor you trust. Not every doctor is for every patient. If your doctor is not meeting your needs, do not hesitate to seek a second opinion.

5. Connect with other IBD patients. As supportive as family and friends may be, they may not be able to relate to exactly what you are going through and what you are concerned about. It may be helpful to speak with other IBD patients, either in-person or online.

6. Adhere to medication. Make sure to take your medication exactly as prescribed. Do not make changes to your medication without consulting your doctor first. Continue reading