All You Need to Know About an Endoscopy

Endoscopy Procedure

Endoscopy is a medical procedure directly visualizing any part of the organ inside the body, using an endoscope.  It is a medical device used to examine the interior organs of the body. It has a long, tube-like optical viewing instrument with a lens and a light source. Endoscope can be inserted through the mouth, anus or small cut in the skin.  It has a flexible tube which not only provide as an image for visual inspection and photography, but also enable taking biopsies and helps in removal of foreign objects.

Cross Section of Endoscopy

Foreign object ingestion is more common in people, while most of the time it occurs frequently among children, it also happens to adults. Endoscopy is safe and effective in treating patients who have swallowed a foreign object that will not pass naturally. Endoscopy is a noninvasive and effective method for removal of the foreign object.

Endoscopic procedures are not painful, but gives a mild discomfort.

The components of endoscopic instrument consists of:

  • A stretching or rigid tube.
  • A light at the end of the tube that enlightens what the doctor wanted to examine. The light is delivered via an optical fiber system.
  • A lens system that send out an image to the viewer from the fiberscope
  • Another channel to allow the entry of medical instruments or manipulators

Endoscopes are inserted directly into to the organ or the tissue and the images of the patient’s body can be viewed on a screen. The whole endoscopy is recorded so that doctors can check it again. There are many different reasons to carry out endoscopy. The symptoms include such as if you have bleeding, pain, difficulty swallowing and a change in bowel habits. Colonoscopy is also done to screen the colon for polyps.

Flexible Endoscope

An endoscopy is performed to confirm a diagnosis when other medical devices, such as an MRI, X-ray or CT scan reports are considered inappropriate.  Endoscopy is used to examine areas of the gastrointestinal tract, including the esophagus, stomach, and areas of the intestine.

Endoscopies are commonly used for the diagnosis of cancer in doing biopsies by taking samples of tissue to find out whether it is cancerous.

An endoscope can be fitted with surgical instruments and some of the minor surgical procedures can be carried out with the modernized endoscope, like removal of gallbladder, tying and sealing the fallopian tubes and taking out small tumors.

Sometimes endoscopes act as a tool helpful in the examination of improvised devices by bomb disposal personnel.


EGD (Esophageal Gastroduodenoscopy)

  • The patient is asked to fast for nearly 8 hours before to allow a valid examination of the upper GI tract and to lower the risk of vomiting. Patients may sometimes be given a laxative. Some patients are given antibiotics to prevent infection.
  • Patients who are on blood-thinning medications will be asked to stop the medication for a number of days before endoscopy. Blood – thinning medication is used to stop platelets present in blood plasma from forming clot.There is a risk the blood thinner may cause excessive bleeding during the procedure. It is advised to stop taking any medications, that could cause false readings on tests.
  • People who have had cardiac valve replacement or blood vessel graft should receive antibiotics to prevent infection
  • You will be given a topical anesthetic before the test to numb your throat to prevent gagging.
  • The vast majority of endoscopies require a general anesthetic.

Upper and Lower Endoscopy