What will they do before my endoscopy?

April 1, 2010

An endoscopy is a procedure by which the physician can take a look inside the individual’s body through a flexible tube known as an endoscope. There is a small camera attached to the end of the endoscope. There are different types of endoscopes that are used depending upon the area of the body which needs to be examined. For example, a laparoscope is used to look inside the abdominal organs, appendix or ovaries and a bronchoscope is used to look inside the lungs.

The endoscope is inserted into the body through one of the natural orifices or through an incision. In males, a urinary tract endoscope is inserted through the urethral opening while a laparoscope is passed through a small incision made in the abdominal or pelvic region. A gastrointestinal endoscope may be inserted through the mouth or in some cases, the anus. Smaller instruments may also be passed through the endoscope so that samples may be taken and sent for further analysis. Before going in for an upper gastrointestinal endoscopy, it is important to discuss with your doctor about any allergies to medications that you may have. You should also inform the doctor if you are taking any medications, have heart problems, bleeding problems or if you are pregnant. Also, if you have had any radiation treatment or surgical procedures on the esophagus, stomach or small intestine, the doctor must be made aware of it. You will also be requested to sign a consent form before the procedure. Any other doubts or concerns about the procedure with regards to, how it will be performed, the risks associated with it and the meaning of the test results could be discussed with the doctor. If you are on iron supplements or aspirin medications, you may be advised to discontinue their use for 7-14 days before the procedure.

Before the actual procedure, blood tests may be performed to detect any clotting problems or low blood count. An anesthetic spray may be used to numb the throat. Gargles or lozenges may also be administered in some cases. This will have a relaxing effect on your gagging reflex, thereby making insertion of the endoscope easier. A sedative and pain medication may be administered during the test, which will cause you to feel drowsy. Once the endoscope is inserted, the doctor will examine the walls of the stomach, duodenum and esophagus and check for abnormalities. Images are obtained and stored for later analysis and once examination is complete, the scope is removed.

Submitted by M T on April 1, 2010 at 03:45

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