An endoscopy is a procedure carried out by a gastroenterologist to examine the upper GI tract. It is used in the diagnosis, and sometimes treatment, of conditions affecting the upper GI system. An endoscopy uses an imaging technique to visualize the esophagus or stomach.
Most people are unaware of this procedure until they develop symptoms that lead to a doctor recommending it. Below are some of the most frequently asked questions about endoscopy.
Who Needs an Endoscopy?
Your doctor may recommend that you get an endoscopy for purposes of investigating upper GI symptoms. It will likely be recommended if you experience symptoms such as persistent upper abdominal pain, difficulty swallowing, nausea, vomiting, and unexplained weight loss.
How Do I Prepare for an Endoscopy?
An endoscopy require some preparation on your part. Instructions will be given by the doctor ahead of the procedure. Patients are instructed not to drink or eat anything six to eight hours before the procedure. Certain medications, such as blood thinners, may need to be stopped before the test, as well. Write down all of the instructions you are given by your doctor and follow them precisely to ensure the procedure goes smoothly.
What Should I Wear to My Endoscopy?
Wear comfortable and easily removable clothes on the day of your endoscopy. You will need to change into a hospital gown during the procedure. If you wear glasses or dentures, the doctor will ask you to remove them.
Will I Be Asleep During My Endoscopy?
In most cases, patients are conscious during an endoscopy. Doctor provide sedation during the procedure to ensure you don’t feel pain and can relax, but you will be awake throughout it.
Does an Endoscopy Hurt?
Endoscopy should not hurt. You will be given sedation to ensure you remain relaxed and pain-free during the procedure. After the endoscopy, your throat may feel sore, but this will pass in a few hours.
What Tools Will The Doctor Use?
Endoscopy is a minimally invasive procedure, so the tools used are miniature and designed to facilitate it. The doctor will use a mouthpiece to keep your mouth open, and an endoscope, which is a long, flexible tube with a camera and light attached at the end. Should the doctor need to perform treatment, such as treating a bleeding peptic ulcer, they can pass a specialized tool through the endoscope and perform the treatment.
How Long Does An Endoscopy Take?
Endoscopy usually takes 15 to 20 minutes to complete but can take longer depending on whether the doctor performs treatment in addition to the examination.
After the procedure, you will be taken to the recovery area. The nurses will observe you for 30 minutes. Your throat may feel a bit sore, which is normal. Arrange for someone else to drive you home after the procedure.
Endoscopy in California
At inSite Digestive Health Care, we provide services for all your gastroenterology needs. We understand that you want quick, effective, and compassionate care – and that’s exactly what we offer. Our friendly team of professionals will answer any questions you may have about your procedure and help you prepare for it. To schedule your endoscopy, call our location nearest you or use our online appointment request form.