Reasons You May Need an Endoscopy
Diagnostic tests like x-rays, blood work, and mammograms are essential aspects of medical management. Endoscopy services are less well-known but no less important in helping doctors diagnose and manage various conditions. An endoscopy is a test that allows a doctor to observe and evaluate certain parts of the digestive tract, such as the stomach, colon, or esophagus. The type of endoscopy that is performed is usually dictated by the symptoms a patient is having. Heartburn is a prime example. According to the American College of Gastroenterology, as many as 15 million Americans suffer from heartburn on a daily basis. It is estimated that up to 60 million have heartburn at least once a month. This condition is one of several for which a doctor may recommend an endoscopic exam.
An endoscopy is a minimally invasive examination that may help diagnose and even treat conditions such as:
- Chronic heartburn or acid reflux
- Colorectal cancer
- Cancers of the digestive tract
- Polyps in the digestive tract
- Foreign object in the digestive tract
An endoscopy may also be performed to obtain a small tissue sample of an unusual growth in the digestive tract.
How Does Endoscopy Work?
Endoscopies are performed as outpatient procedures. After administering appropriate anesthesia, the doctor inserts an endoscope, a small fiber-optic, lighted tube with a camera. This sends images of the applicable segment of the gastrointestinal tract to a screen. For upper endoscopies, patients may be treated with a local anesthetic in the form of a topical spray. A sedative may also be administered prior to treatment to achieve maximum physical and emotional comfort. Patients receiving lower endoscopy testing may also be given an oral or IV sedative to make their procedure comfortable and stress-free.
Gramercy Park Digestive Disease Center provides patient-centered care that attends to accuracy, efficiency, and comfort. We have offices on Park Avenue South and Bennett Avenue. Contact us today for more information or to schedule your appointment with one of our friendly, board-certified physicians.