Advanced Endoscopy Center
Gastroenterology located in St. Louis, MO
When symptoms like abdominal pain suggest a problem in your gastrointestinal (GI) tract, you may need to have a minimally invasive endoscopy. As specialists in endoscopic procedures, the team at Advanced Endoscopy Center performs multiple types of endoscopies to diagnose and repair the full range of conditions found in your GI tract, from ulcers and blockages to diverticulitis and colon cancer. If you have questions or need to schedule an endoscopy, call the office in St. Louis, Missouri, or book an appointment online today.
Endoscopy Q & A
What is an endoscopy?
An endoscopy is a minimally invasive procedure that allows your provider at Advanced Endoscopy Center to examine your gastrointestinal tract. During an endoscopy, your provider diagnoses inflammation, growths, blockages, stones, and many other problems. Then they treat the problem by guiding specialized tools through the scope.
Your provider performs this procedure using a medical device called an endoscope. These scopes are long, flexible tubes equipped with a video camera and lighting.
They insert the scope through your mouth to examine the upper GI tract, or through the anus when they need to examine your lower GI tract. As they guide the scope through your GI tract, the camera sends images showing the tissues to a monitor.
When would I need an endoscopy?
An endoscopy identifies the root cause of symptoms such as abdominal pain, rectal bleeding, diarrhea, constipation, and acid reflux. After diagnostic imaging such as a CT scan or MRI shows problems, you may need an endoscopy to precisely identify the type, severity, and location of the condition.
You may need an endoscopy when you have symptoms but diagnostic imaging doesn’t reveal signs of a problem. Endoscopies are also done to screen for diseases like colon cancer and to monitor the results of treatment for a GI condition.
What type of endoscopy might I need?
Though all endoscopic procedures follow the same process, they have different names based on the area being examined. The different types include:
Upper GI endoscopy (esophagogastroduodenoscopy, or EGD)
Your provider does an upper GI endoscopy to examine your esophagus, stomach, and duodenum (the upper part of your small intestine).
Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP)
An ERCP is a specialized technique that combines an endoscopy with X-rays to examine the ducts associated with your liver, pancreas, and gallbladder.
During a colonoscopy, your provider evaluates the lining of your rectum and the full length of your large intestine (colon).
The procedure is called a sigmoidoscopy when your provider needs to examine only your rectum and the lower part of the large intestine.
A capsule endoscopy allows your provider to see more of the small intestine than they can reach with an upper GI endoscopy. This procedure is different from the others because it’s not done with an endoscope. Instead, you swallow a pill-sized capsule that contains a wireless camera.
If you need to schedule an endoscopy or you have questions about your symptoms, call Advanced Endoscopy Center or schedule an appointment online today.