Upper Endoscopy

Why is this procedure necessary?

Your physician has recommended this procedure to visualize the upper esophagus and stomach to look for ulcers, stricture, bleeding hiatal hernia, or inflammation . Your condition may require a dilatation. You may be experiencing symptoms of GERD (Gastro-esophageal reflux disease), difficulty swallowing or frequent heartburn.

How is an upper endoscopy performed?

The procedure is performed with you lying on your left side.

Immediately prior to the start of the exam, a small bite block will be inserted into your mouth.

After the administration of a mild sedative through a small intravenous, the endoscope is gently inserted through your mouth into the upper esophagus .

You can breathe easily throughout the exam.

Your physician many use a numbing throat spray.

What is the preparation procedure?

Diet - Nothing to eat or drink after midnight the night before your procedure.

You should avoid chewing gum.

Some foods to avoid the day before your appointment include red or purple food like Jell-O.

If you become uncomfortable with a dry mouth you may swish and spit out water or mouth wash.

Medications - If you take heart, blood pressure or respiratory medications, take them one hour before your appointment with a small amount of water.

Please notify your doctor if you are taking anticoagulants or blood thinners such as Coumadin, Plavix or Aspirin regularly. Special instructions may be necessary.

When you arrive for your appointment, please notify the staff at The Endoscopy Center the date of your last dose of these medications

When should I arrive?

After discussing with your physician to have an Upper Endoscopy and scheduling a date, you should arrive at least 30 minutes prior to the procedure time.

There are papers to sign and preparation procedures before having the procedure.

How long will the procedure take?

An upper endoscopy can take as little as 10minutes to perform but may take longer depending on your condition. The total time you may be at The Endoscopy Center can vary, but is approximately 1 to 2 hours.

What to bring

Insurance card

List of the drugs you are currently taking

List of medication allergies or allergies to adhesive tape or latex

The name (if any) of the physician(s) that you would like to receive copies of the report (the findings of the exam).

You will be asked questions about your medical and surgical history. It is helpful to have this information in written format.

What to wear - Wear loose fitting, comfortable clothes. Bring socks to keep your feet warm.

Do not wear heavy or bulky sweaters. Avoid girdles, pantyhose, or tight-fitting garments.

You will be required to change into a patient gown. Prior to the procedure you will be asked to remove any dentures or eye glasses.

Contact lenses will not need to be removed. Leave all jewelry and valuables at home. You may keep hearing assist devices in place.

Monitoring - Before the procedure begins, your temperature, pulse, blood pressure and blood oxygen will be measured.

During the procedure and recovery period, monitoring of blood pressure, pulse and blood oxygen level is continued.

You may receive supplemental oxygen during the procedure using a small tube which fits under your nose.

During the procedure, your EKG (heart rhythm) will be monitored.

If you have diabetes, your blood sugar will be monitored if necessary.

Transportation - Bring a driver since you may not drive yourself home.

Because of the effects of the sedation you will be receiving, you will not be able to drive for at least 12 hours after your procedure.

If possible, your driver should be someone with whom your doctor can freely discuss the results of your procedure, since you may be a little forgetful afterwards.

We request that your driver remain at the center during your exam. However, if this is not possible, we will ask for contact information such as a cell phone number. You should plan on being at the Endoscopy Center approximately 1 to 2 hours.

Taxis and Buses are unacceptable means of transportation unless you will be accompanied by a family member or friend who will sign you out.  

You're Permission - If you have any questions or concerns about this exam, do not hesitate to ask your doctor about them. To signify that you completely understand what this exam involves and that you are giving permission for the doctor to perform this exam, you will be asked to sign a written consent form before the exam begins.

What information do I need before I go home?

While you will soon be resuming your normal activities, there are several directions and precautions that you should be aware of to insure your safety.

  Because of the medication you are given during the procedure, you may experience amnesia, which may last for the remainder of the day. You will be given written instructions upon discharge to review as your amnesia subsides.

  Because you have been sedated for the procedure, you are not to drive a motor vehicle, operate dangerous machinery, or perform potentially hazardous tasks for at least twelve hours or until you have completely recovered from the effects of the medication. You may not consume alcohol for 12 hours following your procedure. Do not conduct important business or sign any legal documents.

  Since you have been fasting and your upper intestinal tract has been investigated, it is wise to slowly resume your eating. A light snack as your first food is advisable.

 During the procedure, the doctor uses air to inflate the stomach to help visualize this organ. While he removes as much as possible, some air may remain and be passed normally. You may feel slightly bloated and gaseous. This is normal and will go away within a few hours.

  If you have redness or swelling at sites where medications were given, place a warm wet washcloth over the affected area for twenty minutes. If the symptoms persist for over two days please contact our office at 760-274-2700

   Call our office if you develop fever greater than 101 degrees or chills during the next 48 hours.

  Call your physician if any questions or problems arise.

  Rarely, complications can occur. While every caution is taken to prevent any problems, complications can occur and sometimes these may not become evident for several hours.

If, in the next 24 hours you experience any of the following, contact your Physician immediately. If the physician is unavailable, have someone drive you to the Emergency Department.

  Vomiting of blood or black, coffee ground material.

  Severe chest pain or new onset of abdominal pain.

  Difficulty or pain during swallowing.

  Severe dizziness of fainting.

  Sweating, severe nausea or high fever.

These symptoms may indicate a complication of the procedure. Your physician will want to discuss these symptoms with you.

•  The Endoscopy Staff will telephone you the day after your procedure to check on your condition.

•  We are available to answer your questions or concerns during center hours ( 7:00 am-3:30pm )

•  However, if you call after hours you will need to contact your physician directly.

•  We welcome comments and feedback on your satisfaction with The Endoscopy Center so please email us.