How your gastroenterologists in Anchorage and Eagle River, AK, use endoscopies to help keep you healthy!
If your doctor has recommended that you undergo an endoscopy, you may be wondering what the exact purpose of this procedure may be. The truth is, an endoscopy is an important way to diagnose problems of the upper digestive system. With two convenient office locations in Anchorage and Eagle River, Alaska, the gastroenterologists here at Alaska Digestive & Liver Disease offer a full range of gastroenterology services including endoscopic treatment to help keep you healthy. Read on to learn more!
The Basics about Endoscopies
Using an endoscope, your doctor can diagnose and treat problems associated with your esophagus, duodenum, stomach, and upper intestine. Some of the most common diseases and conditions that endoscopies can detect include:
- Anemia, ulcers, and hiatal hernias
- Gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD
- Celiac disease and gastrointestinal cancers
During an endoscopy, an ultra-thin, flexible tube is inserted into your mouth and guided down into your esophagus, stomach, and small intestine. The tube dilates your esophagus to allow for better visibility and access to structures. The tube has a tiny camera attached to the end which allows your gastroenterologist to view your upper digestive system. Your gastroenterologist can also take a small tissue sample for biopsy and remove polyps or abnormal growths if necessary.
Your doctor may recommend an endoscopy if you are experiencing signs and symptoms including:
- Chronic nausea and vomiting
- Chronic abdominal pain
- Difficulty swallowing
- Gastrointestinal bleeding
To prepare for your endoscopy, you will need to refrain from eating or drinking anything for 4 to 8 hours before your procedure. Additionally, you should talk to your doctor about discontinuing the use of any blood thinners or NSAIDS before treatment. Your gastroenterologist may also give you a sedative before treatment, so plan to bring someone with you who can drive you home after your procedure.
Give us a call!
If you’ve been told that you need an endoscopy, don’t worry. Endoscopic procedures are state-of-the-art and are well-tolerated by virtually everyone. To find out more about the benefits of endoscopic procedures and other gastrointestinal services, dial (907) 569-1333 to set up an appointment at either our Anchorage or Eagle River location!