What is an endoscopy procedure?  

Endoscopy is a minimally invasive and non-surgical procedure, used to examine the digestive tract. A doctor or surgeon can use it to examine or take a closer look at internal organs or tissue, without having to make cuts or incisions on your body.  

Endoscopy is by inserting a long, thin tube with an attached camera that enters through a small opening such as the mouth or the anus. This way your doctor can get images inside of your body. Endoscopy is more effective than X-rays as they give a closer image of what happens inside the body.

 

Why do I need an endoscopy?

An endoscopy may be recommended to you in cases of abnormality that the doctor notices, and in order to examine it closely. Some of the conditions that may require an endoscopy are- 

  • Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) 
  • Ulcers in the stomach
  • Bleeding in the digestive tract 
  • Pancreatitis 
  • Gallstones 
  • Tumours
  • Blockages in the oesophagus, or difficulty in swallowing. 
  • Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) 
  • Some other digestive tract disease.  

 

Endoscopy is performed by specialists, hence, it is important that you seek advice from the best doctors for endoscopy. Surf online for doctors for endoscopy in Delhi. 

 

Types of endoscopy 

Depending upon the area of examination, different types of endoscopy are performed. Some of them are as follows. 

 

  • Upper endoscopy -Upper endoscopy or Esophagogastroduodenoscopy (EGD) is usually performed in a hospital. It is used to look inside the upper part of the digestive tract – oesophagus, stomach and some part of the small intestine. A flexible tube with light and camera is inserted in through the mouth. It is usually used to identify causes of ongoing heartburn, vomiting and nausea, black or tarry stools, bleeding in the digestive tract, etc.

 

  • Colonoscopy- In a colonoscopy, the doctor examines the abnormalities and diseases in the large intestine. Here, the scope is inserted through the anus. Some of the reasons why colonoscopy may be performed are as follows- colorectal cancer, changes in bowel habits, to evaluate the symptoms of abdominal or rectal bleeding, unexplained weight loss, chronic constipation, diarrhoea, etc. 

 

  • Sigmoidoscopy- The problems in the inner lining of the rectum and the lower area of intestine large intestine (also known as sigmoid colon) is examined through sigmoidoscopy. If you face any problems with your bowel movements, abdominal pain, rectal bleeding, unexplained weight loss, etc then sigmoidoscopy may be performed on you. Like colonoscopy, the scope is inserted into the anus to inspect the colon and other areas with abnormalities. 

  • Endoscopic Ultrasound – This is done to inspect and assess the organs in the gastrointestinal tract. Endoscopic ultrasound is a minimally invasive technique, that provides a detailed image of the affected organs. This is especially helpful to detect disorders or growth of tumour or cancerous cells in the pancreas, stomach, intestine or the oesophagus.  

 

  • Biopsy – A biopsy is performed in cases where the doctor detects problems during an endoscopy and decides to repair or remove tissue or cells. It also helps to diagnose an illness or detect cancer. While CT scans and X-rays may help in identifying the areas of concern, biopsies are of great help to differentiate the cancerous cells from the non-cancerous ones. 

 

  • ERCP- Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography is a special type of endoscopy where a gastroenterologist is able to get the pictures of the pancreas, gallbladder, and bile ducts. A doctor can perform, biopsies and stent placements in case they diagnose a problem. 

 

Benefits of Endoscopy 

As compared to traditional surgery, endoscopy is safe, efficient, quick and accurate. It is a minimally invasive technique which helps in quick diagnosis of the disease. Normally, it takes around 5 to 10 minutes for a doctor to complete the procedure of endoscopy. The doctor can examine and closely look at the tissues, organs, without having to make any incisions. More accurate results are obtained with the help of this procedure. 

 

Risks 

While there are several advantages of endoscopy, there are a few risks involved too. Some of the rare complications are – 

  • Bleeding – This may happen during biopsy while removing a tissue or while treating a digestive system problem. 
  • Infection – Usually the spread of infections is low, but when multiple procedures are performed during your endoscopy, there is a chance of infection. However, these infections are mild and can be treated with antibiotics. 
  • Perforation – perforation can occur in the oesophagus, where there is a tear in the esophageal wall. This can occur after continuous vomiting, or after endoscopy or biopsy. 

 

Some of the symptoms that you may be having complications are- vomiting, chest pain, difficulty in swallowing, change in color of stools, etc. 

 

Risks in Endoscopy are very few and can be avoided if attention is paid to doctor’s instruction such as fasting, and stopping the use of certain medications,  etc. Overall, endoscopy is a very safe procedure and it is one of the revolutionary wonders  of medical 

science.