Examination of the esophagus, stomach and duodenum
The examination (gastroscopy) is performed to reveal if there are any medical or surgical conditions in the upper part of the digestive tract (esophagus, stomach and duodenum) such as gastric ulcers, gastritis, esophageal hernia or other changes.
The gastroscopy is performed through the mouth with an endoscope, a flexible and steerable instrument through which the inside of the esophagus, stomach and duodenum are inspected. Inserting instruments through the endoscope makes tissue sampling and photographing possible.
You must be fasting for 6 hours, but can drink water for up to 2 hours before examination.
If you receive the acid suppression medication such as Nexium, Lanzoprazol, Pantoprazole you should not take this medication 1 week prior to examination (if possible); otherwise it may be difficult to detect ulcer bacteria (Helicobacter Pylori). You may use substitute medication that can be purchased over the counter until 1 day before examination. Possibly Alminox, Balancid, Link or Novaluzid.
If you want/need sedation during examination, you must previously have planned the transport home after surgery (pick-up by relatives, taxi or other). Following sedation you are not allowed to drive for 6 hours.
The examination is performed lying on the left side. The endoscope is introduced through the mouth, where you will be asked to swallow to allow the endoscope to get down into the esophagus. There is plenty of room to breathe through both the nose and the mouth during examination.
The throat can, optionally, be sedated with a spray.
The examination lasts for approx. 5 minutes. Most patients find it uncomfortable because of the vomiting reflexes likely to occur.
Some patients prefer to get a light anesthetic and sedative. This is given as an injection in the beginning.
You get the result of the examination immediately. The result of the examination is sent to your general practitioner within 24 hours as well. The result of tissue samples is available after 1 week and will preferably be e-mailed to you.
If any local sedation with spray has been given, you can’t eat or drink for the first hour due to the risk of being choked.
If you haven’t received a local anesthetic spray, you can eat and drink normally immediately after the examination.