Why wouldn't someone be sedated for an upper-endoscopy?

March 25, 2010

An upper endoscopy or what is simply called as endoscopy is a procedure wherein the physician directly examines certain parts of the gastrointestinal tract such as the esophagus, the duodenum, and the stomach. These are the upper parts of the gastrointestinal tract. For most patients, sedation is one way to avoid any kind of unpleasant feeling or experience. Most of the times patients prefer to be sedated before the procedure, but there are instances when patients have not been sedated during the procedure

By going in for an un-sedated endoscopy, you can eliminate the risks involved with using drugs. Any concerns and doubts that you may have about using drugs are done away with. These concerns may sometimes not be justified, but nevertheless need to be addressed. Another advantage of not being sedated is that the time you spend in the recovery room is reduced. You will not have to come for the procedure escorted by someone to drive you home. You are generally allowed leave the hospital unaccompanied and can get back to work without a worry.

Most patients who opt to go in for un-sedated upper endoscopy will need to be counselled by the doctor about the pros and cons before the procedure. They become aware of the fact that it is the topical effects of the anaesthesia that prevents the gag reflex and not the sedation.

In earlier times morbidity and mortality were associated with certain drugs used for sedation and that’s why certain safer alternatives were sought. Very often what happens with sedation is that a patient might not actually feel the benefits of sedation till the entire procedure is finished. So what might happen is that the patient might sleep after the procedure and be combative during the procedure. This would mean that the purpose of sedating the patient is defeated to some extent. Sometimes the time taken for a patient to be ready for the procedure is also more when the patient is sedated.

To sum up, we need to understand that most people would need some kind of sedation for upper endoscopy. The complexity of an endoscopy has increased today and it has becomes necessary for some safe and effective sedation to be used. If you are planning to go in for an endoscopy the best thing to do would be to speak with your doctor who will be best able to guide you. It is important that you follow all the specific instructions given to you by your doctor to be mentally and physically prepared before the examination.

Submitted by N S on March 25, 2010 at 12:42

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