Gastroscopy (Upper Endoscopy)
Gastroscopy, also known as upper endoscopy, is a procedure that is performed by gastrointestinal specialists at Queensland Gastroenterology.
What is a Gastroscopy?
A gastroscopy is a procedure in which a narrow and flexible tube called an endoscope is used to look inside the oesophagus, stomach and first part of the small intestine (duodenum). The endoscope is fitted with a camera and sends images of the inside of your oesophagus, stomach and duodenum to a monitor.
The procedure is also known as an upper gastrointestinal endoscopy.
An upper endoscopy helps your doctor evaluate symptoms of persistent upper abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, or difficulty swallowing. It is also used for finding the cause of bleeding from the upper gastrointestinal tract. Your doctor may use upper endoscopy to obtain a biopsy (small tissue samples).
Biopsies are taken for many reasons, and your doctor may take a biopsy, even if he or she does not suspect cancer. For example, your doctor may take a biopsy to test for Helicobacter pylori, a type of bacteria that causes ulcers.
Upper endoscopy is also used to treat conditions of the upper gastrointestinal tract. Your doctor can pass instruments through the endoscope to directly treat many abnormalities with little or no discomfort. For example, your doctor may stretch a narrowed area (dilatation), remove polyps (polypectomy usually benign growths) or treat bleeding.
How should I prepare for a gastroscopy?
For gastroscopy, you should have nothing to eat or drink, not even water, usually six hours before the examination. Your doctor will tell you when to start this fasting.
What about my current medications?
Please advise Queensland Gastroenterology of all medications prior to your gastroscopy procedure.
Should I arrange for help after the procedure?
You will receive sedatives so you won’t be allowed to drive after the procedure until the next day, even if you don’t feel tired. You should arrange for a ride home. You must have someone stay with you at home after the examination, as the sedatives could affect your judgement and reflexes for 24 hours.