One of the UK’s leading paediatric gastroenterologists is set to retire from his post as consultant at Watford General Hospital on Friday, March 21.

Dr Muftah Eltumi (PhD FRCP FRCPCH) has more than 30 years experience in paediatric medicine and has held many notable clinical positions and published numerous original articles.

In 1992, Dr Eltumi was appointed as a lecturer and senior registrar at Charring Cross and Westminster Medical School where, with colleagues, he established the Paediatric Gastroenterology Unit based at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital.

During this post, he published many valuable, groundbreaking research papers, including the use of endoscopic biopsies in children instead of conventional blind capsule biopsy established in the sixties.

In 1997, Dr Eltumi moved to Watford General Hospital where he established a state of the art, dedicated Children Gastrointestinal and Endoscopy unit.

This is where he teamed up with Deena Niren, whose daughter Gemma was treated by him at the Chelsea & Westminster Hospital. Gemma was first diagnosed with bowel disease at the age of 12.

Dr Eltumi wanted to provide the best equipment he could for the local children and he and Deena set out to provide this for them.

Consequently Watford was one of the first in the country to have a wireless capsule endoscopy system which allows a small pellet-sized camera, swallowed by the child, to take up to eight hours of video recordings of the entire digestive system, mainly looking at the small bowel which cannot be seen by endoscopy. 

Images are transmitted to a video recorder the child carries around the waist. 

Since its formation in 2002 Herts Children’s Crohn’s & Colitis Trust (HCCCST) has raised more than £150,000 for Watford Paediatric Gastroenterology Department.

The charity has purchased groundbreaking equipment to improve the lives of local children with bowel disease such as crohn’s and colitis.

Raising money for bowel disease was not easy and the charity also worked hard at raising peoples awareness.

Deena said that Watford was very lucky to have a specialist in this field as early diagnosis is essential. There is too much suffering in adults and children alike as symptoms can be confused with irritable bowel and, especially with children, deteriation can be very quick.

Dr Eltumi is father of four and lives with his wife Rukia in Gerrards Cross. In his spare time he likes to play golf and spend time with his family.