Endoscopy is a minimally-invasive, nonsurgical procedure used to examine a person’s digestive tract, an internal organ, or other tissue in detail. It can also be used to carry out different tasks, including imaging and minor surgery.
The procedure employs an endoscope, a flexible fiber-optic tube with a tiny TV camera at the end. The camera is connected to an eyepiece for direct viewing that displays the images on a color TV. The endoscope allows for the effective diagnosis of gastrointestinal (GI) disease.
Because modern endoscopy has relatively few risks, delivers detailed images, and is quick to execute, it has proven extremely useful in many areas of medicine. More than 75 million endoscopies are performed each year in the U.S.
Our team generally focuses on diagnostic upper GI endoscopy (EGD) and colonoscopy.
Upper GI Endoscopy (EGD)
An upper GI endoscopy or EGD (esophagogastroduodenoscopy) is a procedure that allows your doctor to diagnose problems in your upper GI (gastrointestinal) tract. The upper GI tract includes your food pipe (esophagus), stomach, and the first part of your small intestine (the duodenum).
An EGD is done using an endoscope with a tiny light and video camera on one end. The tube is inserted into your mouth and throat and slowly pushed through your esophagus, stomach, and duodenum. Video images from the tube are seen on a monitor. EGD is an outpatient procedure, meaning you can go home that same day. It takes approximately 5-20 minutes to perform.
Small tools may also be inserted into the endoscope. These tools can be used to:
- Take tissue samples for a biopsy
- Remove food or other materials that may be stuck in the upper GI tract
- Inject air or fluid
- Stop bleeding
An upper GI endoscopy may also be performed to investigate symptoms of:
- Stomach pain
- Difficulty swallowing
- Protracted nausea and vomiting
- Unexplained weight loss
- Bleeding in the upper GI tract or bowel movements
Moreover, an upper GI endoscopy can be used to identify conditions such as:
- GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease)
- Narrowing (strictures) or blockages
- Larger than normal veins in the esophagus
- Redness, inflammation, and sores (ulcers)
- Tumors, either cancerous (malignant) or not cancerous (benign)
- Crohn’s disease
Our surgical team specializes in minimally invasive EGD to diagnose many gastric conditions and diseases. Our providers’ specialty training has allowed them to perform this procedure with excellent outcomes and low risks of complications.