Gastroscopy is also called as upper gastrointestinal endoscopy. Gastric endoscopy test is a diagnostic procedure used by the physician to inspect the inside of the throat, esophagus, stomach, and upper intestine. While endoscopy test is considered as a surgical procedure, it does not involve any incision. Instead the physician will pass a flexible tube called endoscope or gastroscope through the mouth, stomach, and digestive tract. The tube has a tiny video camera mounted on its tip. It also contains a small tool that is used for taking samples. Because the opening of the mouth to small intestine is usually unobstructed, the doctor uses the endoscope to inspect the upper half of the digestive system.
When would a doctor suggest for Gastroscopy?
The doctor suggests for gastroscopy procedure if you have any of these symptoms
Duration: 5 to 30 minutes
The doctor first sprays local anesthetic in your throat. You may also be given sedative through a fine tube called cannula in the arm region. At this stage, the nurse may provide extra oxygen because few sedatives affect your breathing.
The physician will instruct you to sleep on your left side with head bent slightly forward. Then the doctor places a guard between your teeth as it protects the teeth and the lips. The doctor will then pass the gastroscope through the mouth until it rests at the back of the throat. Then the doctor instructs you to swallow the tube into esophagus and down towards the stomach. The doctor inflates the stomach with air through the gastroscope to examine the lining of the stomach. The camera lens present at the end of the gastroscope will send images to the monitor that are used by the doctor to examine the lining of the esophagus, stomach, and duodenal region. If required, the doctor may take a small tissue sample using special instruments passed through the gastroscope. The samples collected will be sent for testing in the laboratory.
If necessary, the doctor may take a biopsy (small sample of tissue) or remove small growths of tissue called polyps using the instruments passed inside the gastroscope. The collected samples will be sent to a laboratory for testing.
Other procedures that can be carried out through gastroscope are;
Stretching the narrowed areas of the esophagus, stomach
Treating the blood vessels or ulcers using injections or heat
Aftercare and Recovery
Limitations and Risks
You may have very rare complications as the specialized doctors perform the test. However, mild sore throat, and bleeding at the biopsy site is quite common.
Complications related to the sedatives used during the test such as tear in the gastrointestinal lining may also be seen.
Be alert in recognizing early signs of possible symptoms and meet your doctor immediately if there are aggravating symptoms such as chest or abdominal pain, difficulty in swallowing, blood in your feces etc.
Endoscopy cost and colonoscopy cost varies from hospital to hospital and also depends on the type of hospital that you decide to get treated in.