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Why Choose Cedars-Sinai Marina del Rey Hospital for Your Esophagoscopy?

Experienced otolaryngologists at Cedars-Sinai Marina del Rey Hospital will treat you with utmost care and professionalism, making the experience of an esophagoscopy safe and the least uncomfortable possible. Cedars-Sinai Marina del Rey Hospital's healthcare providers are here to inform you and answer all your questions about esophagoscopy.

An esophagoscopy is a safe procedure that is performed by healthcare professionals in order to examine the upper parts of ones’ gastrointestinal tract. It can be done as part of a routine physical examination or in cases of reported bothering symptoms in the esophageal area.

There are a few things the patient needs to know before having an esophagoscopy performed on them.

Even if it’s your first time doing an esophagoscopy or not, it’s a good thing to have someone drive you or walk you to and from the healthcare provider. Ask someone from your family or a friend, someone whom you feel comfortable with to come with you. The esophagoscopy might necessitate anesthesia or a sedative, and even if there is no need for that, it’s better to feel supported by someone close to you.

Try not to eat anything for at least six hours prior to the esophagoscopy. It will be easier for your healthcare provider to examine the upper part of the gastrointestinal tract on an empty stomach.

Do not take any blood thinners, like aspirin, before the procedure. If the healthcare provider needs to collect tissue from the esophagus, or if it’s necessary to perform a surgery, not taking blood-thinning medicine can help lower the risks of bleeding. Just to be sure, inform your doctor about the medicine (including vitamins or dietary supplements) you have taken in the time period before the procedure.

The procedure can be done in more than one way, depending on what the overall situation requires, but here are some guiding steps in which an esophagoscopy procedure can go, so you know what to expect.

In some cases, the healthcare provider will need to administer the patient intravenous anesthesia or a local anesthetic to numb the nose or the throat. This will prevent the patient from struggling with the sensation of something being inserted all the way down to the esophagus.

After the anesthesia takes effect, an endoscope will be used gently. The endoscope is thin and tube-like and has a small lighted camera at the end. It can be flexible, depending on the type of endoscopy.

The insertion of the endoscope through the nose or mouth in the esophagus will give the healthcare provider access to what the inner area looks like. Other medical tools can be used in order to take a tissue sample, unclog the esophagus, tie some bleeding veins or even remove a foreign body.

When the procedure is finished, the endoscope will be carefully withdrawn from the esophagus, and the patient will be asked not to leave right away. The patient’s vital signs and general condition will be monitored for approximately an hour before it is completely safe to leave.

Esophagoscopy is a reliable procedure for diagnosis and it does not require making an incision. The patient does not need to be hospitalized for this kind of simple procedure, and the results of an esophagoscopy do not take long to be communicated.

It’s also beneficial for its many applications:

  • biopsy
  • retrieval of foreign bodies
  • placement of stents
  • dilatation of strictures

Immediately after the procedure is done, the patient will be monitored in the recovery room. Since the procedure does not present high risks, the patient should be able to leave in about an hour.

If anesthesia was needed for the esophagoscopy, the patient will most likely feel weak or tired for the rest of the day.

There are some symptoms that can be experienced within 24 hours, like a sore throat, cramping, gas, bloating, hoarse voice, discomfort, or difficulty swallowing. If symptoms persist, make sure to talk to your healthcare provider about it.

Complications or possible risks are:

  • air that can get caught under the skin
  • bleeding internally
  • fever
  • infection
  • injured or irritated esophagus
  • dental trauma

If you experience pain that gets more intense over time, vomiting, blood in the stool, pain in the chest, or breathing with difficulty, contact a healthcare provider immediately.

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