What is Endoscopy?
Endoscopy deals with examining the inside of the body using an endoscope, a device consisting of a flexible tube and an optical system. During an endoscopic procedure, an endoscope is introduced into the body through a natural opening.
Endoscopic procedures can be used to diagnose and evaluate conditions, as well as a form of treatment. The most common endoscopic procedures evaluate the esophagus, stomach, and portions of the intestine.
EGD (Esophagogastroduodenoscopy): An EGD, or esophagogastroduodenoscopy, provides a view from the mouth to the beginning of the small bowel. This procedure is typically performed on patients who have difficulty swallowing or who may have ulcers, heartburn, upper GI (gastrointestinal) bleeding, or to find the cause of abdominal pain. It is also used to investigate tumors or abnormalities in the upper GI tract.
Bronchoscopy: A bronchoscopy is a diagnostic procedure that provides a view of the tracheobronchial tree (bronchi), or large passageways of the lungs. This procedure is typically performed to investigate abnormal chest x-rays or to biopsy or collect bronchial or lung secretions to help diagnose and evaluate upper respiratory issues.
Transesophageal Echocardiogram (TEE): A TEE, or transesophageal echocardiogram, is an ultrasound that gives physicians an improved view of the heart as seen from the esophagus (tube from the mouth to stomach). It is typically used to diagnose heart disease and helps determine heart structure, size and strength and to detect any abnormalities.
Colonoscopy: A colonoscopy provides a view of the interior lining of the large intestine (colon) using a colonoscope, a flexible fiber-optic tube. The procedure provides a view of the large bowel. A biopsy may be performed to evaluate tissue. It may be used to evaluate hemorrhoids, rectal bleeding, polyps and in determining the extent of inflammatory bowel disease. A colonoscopy also helps diagnose colon cancer.
ERCP (Endoscopic Retrograde Cholangiopancreatography): The ERCP, or endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography, examines the pancreatic, gallbladder and biliary ducts. It can identify and remove stones or diagnosis tumors in the ducts or identify a narrowing of the ducts.