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Lois Bucksot has been a nurse at IU Health University Hospital for nearly 40 years focusing on work with gastrointestinal doctors who treat patients with digestive procedures and disorders.
When she first started at IU Health Lois Bucksot worked with a small staff, performing one or two ERCP procedures a day. Now the area has expanded to perform about seven procedures a day – anywhere from 45 to 60 a week.
“I was working with Dr. Glen Lehmen, and he had visions of developing a world- class ERCP program at IU Health. At the time I was a newly divorced single mom so we both dug in our heels and built this program from not much of anything – it’s been a team effort. Everybody worked tirelessly to bring it to where it is today,” said Bucksot. Over time, other doctors followed including Dr. Stuart Sherman who serves as director of the ERCP.
Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) is a procedure, which combines endoscopic techniques with radiologic imaging techniques to diagnose and treat both pancreatic and biliary diseases. “Our focus is on the ductal systems which drain the pancreas and liver. My doctors refer to themselves as ‘endoscopic plumbers.’”
Bucksot starts her day in the basement of University Hospital, at 6:30 a.m. setting up the rooms and preparing for procedures. About an hour later she meets with the physicians to review the caseload of the day. Most procedures are performed as a same day surgery. Bucksot assists physicians during the procedure, charting and also orienting new employees.
“The physicians I work with are gastroenterologists. We take care of patients with bile duct stones, bile duct cancers, pancreatic cancer, chronic pancreatitis – it’s a variety of issues and a number of disease processes,” said Bucksot, a graduate of Northwest High School and IU School of Nursing.
“Every day I’m learning something new working with these physicians,” said Bucksot. “They’re always very patient and make it such a team effort. I think everyone feels like they are contributing to the team. We have great physicians and nurses to work with, and we’re always on the cutting edge with new equipment and procedures.”
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-- By T.J. Banes, Associate Senior Journalist at IU Health. Reach Banes via email at T.J. Banes or on Twitter @tjbanes.