Endoscopic procedures enable your physician to examine the tissues of your digestive system in detail. Board-certified gastroenterologist Oforbuike Ewelukwa, MD, MSc, of Imperial Digestive Health Specialists PLLC in Katy, Texas, uses state-of-the-art endoscopy to diagnose and, in some cases, treat disorders affecting your gastrointestinal system. Call Dr. Ewelukwa’s team today and schedule a consultation or book an appointment online.

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What is an endoscopy?

An endoscopy is a nonsurgical procedure that enables your provider at Imperial Digestive Health Specialists PLLC to see inside your digestive tract. The endoscope is a slim, flexible tube fitted with a light and a miniature camera that relays images of your gastrointestinal tract back to a monitor in the treatment room.

An upper endoscopy uses a tube that goes down your throat and sends back pictures of your esophagus, stomach, and duodenum (the first part of your small intestine).

Some patients might be suitable for capsule endoscopy, where you swallow a tiny camera shaped like a pill. The camera sends back images of your entire digestive tract before coming out in your stools.

Endoscopies of your lower gastrointestinal tract (rectum and colon) use the same techniques as an upper endoscopy, but with specialized endoscopic tools such as a sigmoidoscope or a colonoscope.

When might I need an endoscopy?

Your provider at Imperial Digestive Health Specialists PLLC might suggest an endoscopy if they need to investigate the cause of symptoms such as:

  • Stomach pain
  • Difficulty swallowing (dysphagia)
  • Bleeding in the upper digestive tract
  • Chronic constipation
  • Chronic diarrhea
  • Persistent nausea or vomiting
  • Acid reflux (heartburn)

During your endoscopy, your provider can do a biopsy if necessary, taking small tissue samples for analysis in the lab. They might be able to treat some conditions during an endoscopy, like sealing a bleeding stomach ulcer using surgical instruments that fit down the endoscope.

What happens when I have an endoscopy?

Before you can have your endoscopy, you need to make sure your stomach is empty. If there’s any food in the stomach, your provider won’t be able to see the tissues, so you must fast the day before you go into Imperial Digestive Health Specialists PLLC for an endoscopy.

Endoscopies don’t usually require a general anesthetic, but your provider gives you a sedative so you feel relaxed and sleepy. This enables your provider to feed the endoscope down your esophagus and into your stomach with minimal discomfort.

It takes about an hour for your sedative to wear off after an endoscopy. Your provider can then discuss any abnormalities that are identified in the endoscopy and recommend an appropriate treatment. You can return home after your endoscopy, but avoid driving for the rest of the day.

Imperial Digestive Health Specialists PLLC has state-of-the-art endoscopy facilities on-site for your convenience. To find out more, call the office or book an appointment online today.