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Our Host

Marianne T. Ritchie, MD

Marianne T. Ritchie, MD is a practicing Gastroenterologist with Jefferson University Hospital. Her career spans three decades. She trained at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, the world’s oldest and foremost all-cancer hospital. After time in New York, Dr. Ritchie returned home to practice at the Lankenau Hospital in Wynnewood and was later a faculty member at Temple University Hospital.

Dr. Ritchie was one of the first female gastroenterologists practicing in the Philadelphia area. She has been a leading advocate for over thirty years. Ritchie developed the PINK PLUS triple cancer screening program for women, and she also launched the BLUE LIGHTS CAMPAIGN for Colon Cancer Awareness.

Dr. Ritchie is also featured as the Medical Contributor on Women to Watch Media®, a weekly talk show on WPHT which highlights stories of women leaders from around the world.

Marianne is married to Dr. Stuart Gordon. They have three children and are avid dog lovers. Dr. Ritchie is also a member of national and international medical societies, a board member of the Colorectal Cancer Alliance, and a recognized author and public speaker.

Publications

Dr. Ritchie is a monthly contributor for the The PhillyVoice. Check out her latest articles below!

What You Need To Know About Acid Reflux

Have you ever experienced heartburn or the feeling of fluid in your throat? These are classic symptoms of acid reflux.

The term “GERD” stands for Gastro (stomach) Esophageal Reflux Disease, a condition caused by back-up of stomach contents such as acid, bile, or even food in the esophagus causing bothersome symptoms.

But sometimes the symptoms are atypical – like difficulty swallowing, hoarseness, or a chronic cough. Even worse, symptoms may include squeezing chest pain, making it hard to tell if it’s heart burn or a heart attack. It’s very important to distinguish between reflux and heart or lung disease, so you must tell your doctor if you have these symptoms. Don’t be Dr. Google and treat yourself with over-the-counter meds. You could be ignoring a life-threatening condition.

‘Blue Lights Campaign’ Raises Awareness to Conquer Colon Cancer

Though March is recognized as Colorectal Cancer Awareness month, this is a message worth repeating throughout the year. If you visited the city in the first week of March, you may have noticed the bright blue skyline.

For the past eight years, the Blue Lights Campaign has led the crusade in Philadelphia and beyond during March. Close to 30 landmark buildings were shining in blue, including skyscrapers, arenas, universities, the iconic Boat House Row, the Ben Franklin Bridge and even the Pennsylvania State Capitol. In 2017, the initiative was recognized with a national award from the American College of Gastroenterology.

After three years of training at Memorial Sloan Kettering, I have devoted my GI practice to prevention and early detection of colorectal cancer (CRC). It’s common and often deadly, but most of the time, it’s preventable! It’s disappointing to realize that despite advances in testing and treatment, one in three age-appropriate Americans are still not being screened.

Heart Disease — The Leading Cause of Death in Women.

Though we’ve leaped from American Heart Month into March, it’s a yearlong message that we share: heart disease is the most common cause of death and disability in adults in the United States.

Sadly, many women are not aware of the magnitude of this risk. To raise awareness, Dr. Lisa Freed, a cardiologist at the Yale New Haven Hospital’s Women’s Heart and Vascular Program, recently joined me for a discussion on Your Radio Doctor, a medical talk show that airs every Sunday morning at 10 a.m. on Talk Radio 1210 WPHT. She reminded listeners that cardiovascular disease poses a significant risk in women, including heart attack and stroke.

SITTITHAT TANGWITTHAYAPHUM/ISTOCK.COM

How to Avoid a Hip Fracture

A Q&A with Dr. Scot A. Brown, Assistant Professor of Surgery Division Chief of Orthopaedic Oncology at the Rothman Orthopaedic Institute

NICOLE MICHALOU/PEXELS.COM

Tips For Safe Eating & Drinking During The Holidays

‘Tis the season to be jolly — late November thru January —from the big turkey dinner on Thanksgiving to the brunch that opens the new year…with holiday parties at the office and celebrations with family and friends in between, that’s a lot of eating and drinking.

Though this year’s restrictions will lead to smaller gatherings, it’s still a good time to discuss tips for safe eating and drinking during the holidays.

Our most recent guest on “Your Radio Doctor” was Registered Dietician and Director of Clinical Dietetics for Jefferson Gastroenterology and Hepatology Emily Rubin, who offered listeners some great suggestions.

PORNPAK KHUNATORN/ISTOCK.COM

An Update On Pancreatic Cancer

When the media focuses on high profile cases — like those of Alex Trabek, Steve Jobs, or Aretha Franklin — it may seem like rates of this disease are growing. However, despite a small, but steady, increase (about 0.5% per year for the last 10 years in the US), it is still a relatively rare cancer. About 12 in 100,000 people will develop cancer of the pancreas. Compare this to colorectal cancer, which occurs in about 1 in 23 men and 1 in 25 women.

What is true is that pancreatic cancer has recently moved from ranking as the fourth leading cause of cancer death to the third spot, surpassing breast and prostate cancer. It’s expected to become the second leading cause of cancer death within the next 10 years. This is in large part due to increased screening for these more common cancers as well as improved treatments.

BURST/PEXELS.COM

Music & Medicine

The fascinating science behind using music as medical therapy.

It’s been said that music fills the gaps left by language. It sets the mood. When you watch a movie, the dark minor chords prepare you for the shark to surge out of the water. Sweet violins drift into that first kiss, a soft lullaby sends the baby adrift on a cloud, and we all cheer when trumpets announce that our favorite underdog Rocky Balboa has conquered the steps of the Art Museum.

CHAMELEONSEYE/ISTOCK.COM

What's to Wh"EAT?"

September 13th was National Celiac Day, so I devoted the entire hour of “Your Radio Doctor” to talking about celiac disease and the gluten-free (GF) diet.

There is so much confusion around this topic. First, what is gluten? It’s a protein found in wheat, barley and rye. So, if you have celiac disease and you eat food which contains gluten, it causes an inflammatory reaction which can damage the lining of your small intestine.

Why is that important? Because your small intestine is your “sponge.” It’s the part of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract where you absorb all the good nutrition to stay healthy and alive! Damage can lead to malabsorption or difficulty absorbing important nutrients.