Jak przygotować się do gastroskopii?


Gastroscopy is a procedure that is usually negatively associated by patients. However, it is one of the most frequently performed tests that helps in the diagnosis of stomach or duodenal diseases. Proper preparation for it can save you a lot of nerves. So how do you make gastroscopy remembered in the most positive way possible?

When is gastroscopy performed?

The most common indications for gastroscopy are various types of ailments of the digestive system, accompanied by:

  • heartburn,
  • frequent vomiting,
  • repeated gastritis,
  • sudden weight loss
  • abdominal pain,
  • difficulties in swallowing,
  • anemia,
  • bleeding from the digestive system.

What is the gastroscopy procedure?

Before starting, the patient is given local anesthesia. In exceptional circumstances, general anesthesia is used. The procedure itself begins with placing a mouthpiece in the mouth, which facilitates the insertion of the gastroscope . The treating physician usually instructs the patient to perform a swallowing motion, which facilitates the movement of the device inside as far as the stomach and duodenum.

During the entire procedure, the doctor assesses whether there are any signs of undesirable changes in the stomach and its vicinity. In the event of such a need, it is also possible to download samples for further examination. The whole process usually takes several minutes. The time may change depending on the patient’s health, but most often it is 15-30 minutes.

How to prepare for a gastroscopy?

One of the main tasks of the patient before surgery is to ensure that it is performed on an empty stomach . This is about not taking food for at least 6 hours before going to the doctor. This also applies to beverages such as coffee, tea and cigarettes. Only still water should be used to quench your thirst, although you should refrain from it for 2 hours before the test.

The treating physician should also clearly convey information on how to take the medications if they are taken on a permanent basis. Those related to stomach diseases usually have to be discontinued for a while. It must be remembered that the doctor who relies on professional knowledge always has the decisive opinion.

In some cases, the doctor may recommend taking an antibiotic before performing the gastroscopy . Most often it affects people who suffer from heart, kidney or liver disease.

Before going for the procedure, it is also necessary to remove removable dentures and piercings from the mouth, as these could interfere with the activities undertaken by the doctor.

Does gastroscopy hurt?

Due to the local anesthesia, the procedure is not painful . Anesthesia involves spraying a special aerosol into the back wall of the throat. Despite this, feeling of discomfort is not uncommon. This is because the insertion of devices through the oral cavity is associated with a gag reflex. Initially, it may also be difficult to adapt to not swallowing saliva, which should flow into the so-called bib.

Can I use general anesthesia?

General anesthesia is almost always used on children. In adults, the so-called shallow sedation. It consists in the use of intravenous agents by the anaesthesiologist that allow the patient to relax and not react intensively to external stimuli. Deep sedation, i.e. full narcosis, is used extremely rarely when the patients are adults.

What after surgery?

In the case of local anesthesia, the patient may leave the medical facility almost immediately after the end of the procedure. The situation is different when sedation has been used. Then it is recommended to stay under the care of doctors for several hours. It is also recommended that an adult accompany the return home. It’s also important to remember that general anesthesia can affect concentration and coordination.

The use of throat anesthesia means that you should wait for about 2 hours with food intake after the procedure. Incomplete sensation can cause a dangerous choking hazard. A little longer, for about 24 hours, you should refrain from eating hot and spicy food. The mucosa can be irritated and it is worth giving it some time to regenerate.

In general, the results are obtained immediately after the test . However, in the case of collecting tissues and swabs, it is necessary to wait about 2-3 weeks. It is always worth discussing the received documentation with a doctor who will provide the information in detail and answer any questions.


Author: Dawid Kałuża

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