What is endoscopy?
Endoscopy is a procedure, which enables the doctor to see inside the oesophagus (food pipe), stomach and duodenum (small bowel) with a flexible scope.
Preparation for your endoscopy.
You should not eat any food for at least 6 hours before the test. You may drink the maximum of 200 ml per hour of water, but should stop 3 hours before the test. Do not chew gum. Important medications; e.g. blood pressure pills can be taken with a small sip of water 3 hours before the test. Diabetics should notify this surgery prior to the test. If you have any important medical problems or you wish to discuss the test prior to the procedure day, you can have a consultation with Dr Hing or Dr Shew first. You should arrange for someone to take you home after the test otherwise you will not be given sedation. In view of sedation used for the test you can not drive a car for 12 hours.
What happens during your endoscopy?
An anaesthetist will give you sedatives via a small cannula in the back of your hand. It will make you sleepy and affects your memory. It is not the same as a general anaesthetic. The test takes 10 minutes. We will tell you some of your results on the same day.
The endoscope is a plastic tube about as thick as a ballpoint pen. It is flexible and has a tiny video camera on the end; this allows us to see the picture from the tip on a monitor screen. If needed, photographs or small biopsies can be taken, the latter are sent to the laboratory to be analysed. You cannot feel the biopsies being taken.
All equipment is high level disinfected or steam sterilised in accordance with the Australia/New Zealand Standards Australia AS/NZS 4187-2014, the NSW Ministry of Health Infection Control Policy and the Gastroenterological Society of Australia guidelines.
Safety and risks.
Endoscopy is simple and safe. Patients with serious heart or chest problems may be at slightly higher risk. Rare complications are: a reaction to the sedatives or causing damage to the food pipe. Everyone is given oxygen to breathe. A clip on the finger monitors the heart rate, nail polish must be removed or the clip will not work.
It is common to have a mild sore throat for 24 hours.
If you wish to discuss all other complications you should ask your endoscopist.
You should also consider the risk associated with not having the test e.g. missing a serious problem that can be treated as soon as possible.
The sedation you are given is very effective at reducing any discomfort, however it can affect your memory for some time afterwards. If you do not remember your talk with the doctor, ring him the next day or make an appointment to come back in.
Because of the sedation you should not: drive, use machinery, go back to work or sign legal documents until the next day.
In the rare event you have any: severe pain swallowing, stomach pains, vomiting, bleeding or other symptoms that worry you, contact us immediately or go to hospital.
- Bring your referral
- Bring your Medicare card/Health Fund card/Pension, DVA or HCC
- Bring the completed admission forms
- Nothing to eat for at least 6 hours before the test. Stop water 3 hours before the test
- No driving until the next day, you must have someone take you home
- Do not wear nail polish
- You will be here approximately 3-4 hours
- A cancellation fee may apply if we don’t have 48 hours’ notice of a cancellation. Please call 93871738 as soon as possible.
In order for us to dedicate as much time and care as necessary for each procedure, we ask you to be patient if we are running behind schedule. You may wish to bring some reading material.
More information is available on our website: www.sydneyendoscopy.com.au