Inflammatory bowel disease service

Inflammatory bowel disease service

Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis are the two main forms of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Crohn's disease causes inflammation to develop in various parts of the gut, usually the small bowel, colon and anal region. Ulcerative colitis (UC) is a disease of the rectum and the colon (otherwise known as the large intestine).

Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis affect more than 300,000 people in the UK. However, they are thought of as hidden diseases, largely because of the stigma attached. In both conditions, parts of the digestive system become swollen, inflamed and ulcerated. There are differences between Crohn's and ulcerative colitis, mainly in the areas of the gut affected and the depth of inflammation.

At present, there is no known cure, however the symptoms can be treated. Medicine and sometimes surgery can give long periods of relief from the symptoms, which include abdominal pain, diarrhoea, weight loss and tiredness. Symptoms will vary in severity from one person to another and can follow an unpredictable course with periods of remission (when you are symptom free) and periods of flare (when you have symptoms). 

Information and about us

We aim to increase your understanding of your diagnosis and provide the care and support you need to manage your disease and its symptoms. Your needs can change with different stages of the illness. We are here to make sure you get the clinical support you need.

If you are admitted to hospital, specialist nurses will visit you on the ward. We can help to explain treatments, medications and test results. We offer support and reassurance and help to keep you informed of your care plans.

After diagnosis and initial treatment you might need regular hospital follow up or shared care with your GP. 


Northern services

Our service is run by a team of professionals working together to provide support and management for patients suffering from Crohn’s disease and Ulcerative Colitis.

Eastern services

The Exeter IBD team looks after approximately 3,500 patients. We have a wide range of backgrounds, skills and experience but we all share one common goal: to make sure you receive safe, consistent, high quality, personalised care.

Gastroenterology Day Unit
Our day unit is run by the IBD nurse specialists. We administer intravenous treatments, such as infliximab, vedolizumab and iron infusions, as well as new therapies as part of clinical trials. The unit is open Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm.

We have an active research department. All of our patients are invited to take part in both local and national research studies. Your consultant or specialist nurse will discuss this with you. Please let your doctor or nurse know if you are interested in taking part in research. They will give you information on any studies that might be suitable for you. We have a dedicated team of research nurses who provide an individual service to patients who to take part.

IBD team meetings
The IBD team holds weekly team meetings to discuss patients’ progress. This helps to ensure that you receive the best care from all members of the IBD team.

Contact us

Northern services

North Devon District Hospital 

Main switchboard on 01271 322577

Gastroenterology secretaries
Kelly- 01271 322734
Adele- 01271 322447

IBD Nurse Advice Line Service 01271 314005

Eastern services

Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital (Wonford) 

Main switchboard on 01392 411611

  • Endoscopy Appointment: 01392 406429
  • Medical Bookings Team: 01392 406925
  • Okement Ward: 01392 402800
  • IBD Helpline: 01392 402728
  • Gastroenterology Day Unit: 01392 404638
  • Research Nurses: 01392 408937 and 01392 408940

For symptom concerns and medicine enquiries, we have a dedicated telephone and email helpline.

  • Telephone helpline: 01392 402728, open Monday to Friday, 9am-5pm, excluding bank holidays (unless otherwise stated on answer machine message)
  • Email helpline:

We will provide you with rapid access to our specialist service; if you are unwell with symptoms of active IBD, have queries regarding your medications or any other IBD-related concerns. We can arrange investigation of your symptoms, review your medications and, if necessary, arrange urgent hospital review. There is an answer phone service available which we encourage you to use if your call is not answered. We aim to return your call within 24 hours, Monday to Friday. If your call is urgent and you are unable to speak with the IBD team directly, please contact your GP or out-of-hours service. If, in the rare event the helpline is closed, a message will clearly state the date and time it will re-open.

Where to find us

Northern Services

North Devon District Hospital 

North Devon District Hospital

Raleigh Park



EX31 4JB

Your healthcare professional will advise where your appointment will take place. Your appointment may take place at one of our outpatient clinics situated within our main hospital sites or within the community.

Eastern services

Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital (Wonford) 

Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital (Wonford)

Barrack Road



Endoscopy: Level 2, Area N

Okement Ward: Level 2, Area F

Clinics: Level 1, Area D


Exeter Community Hospital (Whipton)

Exeter Community Hospital (Whipton)
Hospital Lane

Telephone: 01392 405488


Our Infusion Suite is located at the Exeter Community Hospital (Whipton).

Tiverton Community Hospital

Tiverton and District Hospital
Kennedy Way
EX16 6N

Telephone: 01884 235 400.

We also carry out endoscopy procedures in the day case unit at Tiverton Community Hospital. 

We do offer occasional clinics at Sidmouth Hospital. 


Meet the team

Northern services

Consultant Gastroenterologists:
Dr Andrew Davis

Consultant Colorectal Surgeons:
Mrs Katie Cross- Lead for Surgical IBD

Nurse Endoscopist
Tanja Brackenbury

Clinical Nurse Specialist- IBD Gastroenterology
Monica Chan

Nutrition Nurse
Stephanie Foster - check

Medical Secretaries/ Administrative Support
Adele Atherton
Kelly Adams
Barbara Saunders


Eastern services

Leadership team

  • Rebecca Ody, Cluster Manager
  • Ben Brierley, Lead Nurse
  • Dr Shyam Prasad, Lead Clinician
  • Dr Chris Calvert, Endoscopy Clinical Lead


  • Dr Shyam Prasad
  • Dr Chris Calvert
  • Dr Tarek Shirazi
  • Dr John Christie
  • Prof Tariq Ahmad
  • Dr Nick Kennedy
  • Dr James Goodhand
  • Dr Lin Lee Wong
  • Dr Ben Hudson
  • Dr Christina Levick
  • Dr Jane Chalmers
  • Dr Jonathan Digby-Bell
  • Dr John Rogers 

IBD Specialist Nurses

  • Vida Cairnes, Lead IBD Nurse
  • Sarah Hawkins
  • Michelle Clarke
  • Clare Redstone
  • Nina Winter
  • Halina Windak

Who might I see?

Gastroenterologists are doctors with specialist training and experience in the investigation and management of symptoms and diseases of the gastrointestinal tract.

You will be allocated a named consultant gastroenterologist. They will be responsible for your overall care and be kept up to date with your progress, but you will not necessarily see them at each appointment. The consultants are supported by a team of doctors undergoing higher specialist training and research (registrars and fellows), specialist nurses, nurse endoscopists, technicians and Allied Health Professionals. 

IBD nurse specialists
IBD nurse specialists are senior nurses with specialist training in IBD. They offer support, advice information and treatment recommendations for patients with IBD. They support and care for patients in the outpatient clinic, infusion unit and on the ward. They deliver the IBD Helpline and are often the best point of contact with the team for any advice you might need.

Research nurses
We are actively involved in research and run clinical trials of new therapies for patients with IBD. We welcome patient participation where appropriate. If you would like further information please contact the IBD specialist nurses who will put you in contact with the research nursing team.

IBD surgeons
Patients with IBD sometimes require surgery. We work closely with our specialist surgeons to ensure appropriate timing of surgery.

If you have Crohn's disease you might be referred to our dietitian to discuss specific dietary therapy. You might also benefit from more general dietary advice if you have lost weight or need help managing difficult symptoms.

IBD specialist pharmacist
Our pharmacists are happy to provide advice about any medicine that you might be taking. They are also involved in monitoring of treatments to maximise the benefit and minimise the risks to you. Our pharmacist may contact you to discuss blood test results and treatment doses.

Clinical psychologist
We know that the gut and the brain are connected in many important ways. The way we feel, think and behave can affect our gut, and our gut can affect the way that we feel, think and behave. It is clear that we need to work with the mind and the body to fully understand what is happening.

We know that living with a health condition can have a big impact on a person’s mood and quality of life. It is very usual to feel low, frustrated or anxious about the impact of symptoms, especially when they get in the way of what is important to us. Current struggles or past experiences can be more difficult to cope with when we are living with a health condition. Ways of coping that were helpful in the past can become less helpful.

Psychologists working in health care try to understand interactions between people’s bodies, minds, experiences, strengths and struggles. They use this understanding to think with a person about changes they might want to make

Supporting you

Patient panel
The patient panel meets four times a year to discuss the service provision for IBD patients. The patient panel are a group of patients with IBD who highlight the perspective of patients. They provide feedback and suggestions to improve the IBD services within the hospital and work towards enabling improvements to happen. New members are very welcome or if you simply have any ideas to put forward they would love to hear from you. The IBD nurses will be happy to pass on your contact details or you can email

Services and treatments

Treatments can vary but can include a range of medicines and other options, such as:

Aminosalicylates (5ASA)

  • Mesalazine
  • Sulphasalazine
  • Olsalazine
  • Balsalazide

Immunomodulating therapies

  • Azathioprine and mercaptopurine
  • Methotrexate
  • Tacrolimus
  • Tofacitinib
  • Filgotinib
  • Upadacitinib


  • Infliximab
  • Adalimumab
  • Golimumab
  • Vedolizumab
  • Ustekinumab

Dietary therapies

  • Modulen
  • Modulife


  • Prednisolome
  • Budesonide

Patient information leaflets

We produce a wide range of leaflets which provide information about our services and about the treatment you might receive in our clinics or during your stay in hospital. 

We also produce these in different formats including large print, please contact the department you are visiting for more information.

Find out more

Last updated: March 03, 2023.