DR DOCRAT’S SURGICAL EXPERTISE
A gastroscopy, or gastrointestinal endoscopy, is a procedure in which an endoscope (a thin flexible instrument fitted with a light and camera at the end) is used to look inside the oesophagus (food pipe), stomach and the first part of the small intestine (duodenum).
WHY MIGHT I NEED SURGERY?
Dr Docrat, might perform a gastroscopy if you experience difficulty swallowing or persistent stomach pain. She might use a gastroscopy to diagnose conditions such as stomach ulcers or gastro-oesophageal reflux disease (GORD).
WHAT DOES THIS SURGERY ENTAIL?
A gastroscopy will take less than 15 minutes. This procedure is usually done as an outpatient procedure, which means that you don't have to spend the night in hospital. You may however choose to be sedated for the procedure. Your throat will be numbed with a local anaesthetic spray before Dr Docrat places the endoscope in the back of your mouth. Next she will ask you to swallow the first part of the tube so that it can be guided down your oesophagus and into your stomach. While the procedure shouldn't be painful, it may be uncomfortable at times. In cases where abnormal tissues are found during the gastroscopy, your surgeon may biopsy these tissues for further testing.
WHAT CAN I EXPECT AFTER SURGERY?
After the gastroscopy, you will be taken to the recovery area. If you didn't have a sedative, you would usually be allowed to go home soon after the procedure is finished. If you had a sedative, you would need to rest quietly for a few minutes or hours until the sedative has worn off. You will also need to arrange for someone to take you home and to stay with you for at least 24 hours. Even if you feel very alert, the sedative can remain in your blood for 24 hours, and you may experience further episodes of drowsiness.