doctor with endoscope

From chronic heartburn to gastritis, there are a number of reasons why an endoscopy is recommended. Our team at UAB Medical West wants you to know that if the need would ever arise for an endoscopy that we are here to help!

Do You Need an Endoscopy?

According to the American Nutrition Association, more than 70 million Americans suffer from some form of digestive issues, which include but are not limited to:

  • Heartburn
  • Acid reflux
  • Gastro esophageal reflux disorder, also known as GERD
  • Indigestion constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Abdominal pain
  • Irritable bowel syndrome, also known as IBS

When your digestive issues get to the point where your quality of life is compromised, then it is time to seek medical attention to uncover the cause of the issues. As a result, an endoscopy might be recommended.

What Can You Expect from an Endoscopy?

During an upper endoscopy, your physician is able to examine the lining of your upper gastrointestinal tract, which includes your esophagus, stomach, and the first portion of your small intestine. Through this medical device, he or she can evaluate your upper gastrointestinal system to see if there are any polyps and can remove them at the time, as well as biopsy any tissue that looks suspicious. If there happens to be a bleed causing issues, it can be treated during this time.

Because your physician is placing an endoscope through your mouth and into your stomach, you will be required to stop eating and drinking at least eight hours before your procedure so that you are sure to have an empty stomach during the medical procedure.

You will be placed under a local anesthesia so you are comfortable during the procedure. Since the endoscope doesn?t affect your breathing, you are usually only left slightly uncomfortable after the procedure since a throat spray is used to assist in using the endoscope.

What Can You Expect during Recovery?

While most endoscopies are an outpatient procedure, you will be monitored for a while after your endoscope to make sure you are recovering properly and no surgical issues arised. You can expect your throat to be a little sore, as well as to be bloated due to the gas during the procedure to help your physician see everything more clearly.

Although you will have to wait for any biopsy results, your physician should be able to give you an idea of the results of the endoscopy so you know and understand how to move forward with your care.

In addition, because it is a procedure, you will need to have a loved one drive you to and from your endoscopy during the recovery period. However, you should be able to return to normal routine the following day unless otherwise advised by your physician.

Do you think your symptoms might call for the need of an endoscopy? The medical team at UAB Medical West in Bessemer, AL, is here to help.

Call our UAB Medical West GI Clinic at 205-481-7384 to schedule an appointment with one of our gastroenterologist. We are here to serve the communities of Hoover, Bessemer, McCalla, and Vance and more!