WHAT IS A GASTROSCOPY?
An Gastroscopy is a procedure performed through the mouth that enables the Doctor to see inside your upper gastrointestinal tract – your oesophagus, stomach and duodenum. This procedure is performed in a day hospital. Unlike x-rays, which take photographs of these areas, endoscopy lets the Doctor see the surface of these areas directly and provide far more detail and accuracy than an X-ray. This procedure can be performed under sedation, or if you would prefer no sedation a local anaesthetic (numbing spray) can be used.
HOW AM I PREPARED?
Your stomach must be empty therefore you are required to fast prior to the procedure. No eating for 8 hours, and no drinking for 4 hours before having an Gastroscopy. Medication may be taken up to 2 hours prior with a small sip of water.
WHAT ARE THE ALTERNATIVE TREATMENTS?
Barium swallow, ultrasound, Capsule Endoscopy and CT scan.
HOW ACCURATE IS A GASTROSCOPY?
Gastroscopy is a very accurate procedure, however rarely lesions can be missed especially if they are found on the outside of your stomach.
WHAT ARE THE RISKS?
Complications are very rare (less than 1:10,000 examinations). Complications which can occur include;
Perforation (hole in the gut wall)
Reaction to anaesthetic
Prior to your Gastroscopy procedure you will be asked to provide us with a full medical history. It is particularly important that you advise us if you are;
Allergic or sensitive to any drug or other substance
Taking a blood thinning medication
WHAT HAPPENS ON THE DAY OF MY PROCEDURE?
You will be at the facility for around 2 hours.
A local anaesthetic may be sprayed on to your throat to make it numb. If you have chosen to have your procedure under sedation you will be given medication by injection through a vein to make you sleepy and relaxed. You will probably have little memory of the procedure. While in a comfortable position on your left side, the Doctor will pass the endoscope through your mouth and down the throat. The endoscope itself is a plastic tube about as thick as a ball point pen. The instrument will not interfere with your breathing nor cause any pain. The examination takes about 15 minutes. The endoscopy is performed with a high definition near focus endoscope enabling visualisation of the lining of the oesophagus, stomach and duodenum.
Following your procedure you will be transferred to recovery to be monitored for at least 30 minutes, before being resorted to our seated recovery for refreshments prior to discharge home.
WHAT SHOULD I DO AFTER MY PROCEDURE?
For the next 12 hours, you should:
Not drive a motor vehicle
Have a responsible adult to stay with you due to effects of anaesthetic used
Avoid consumption of alcohol & the signing of any legal documents
You should not plan air travel post procedure for 48 hours on domestic flights, and 14 days for international flights. *This also includes cruises, travel to remote areas and any travel outside of Australia*