An endoscopy procedure is a mutual name for several different techniques of looking inside a human body and getting real internal organ images. Speaking of the endoscopy two procedures are taken into consideration: a gastroscopy (gastroduodenescopy) and a colonoscopy (coloscopy) which are techniques being applied when diagnosing gastrointestinal tract diseases.
The gastroscopy and gastroduodenescopy (also known as panendoscopy) use a flexible telescope inserted into an oral cavity through a pharynx and an oesophagus to a stomach and a duodenum. It is a technique allowing the doctor to have a clear view of the upper part of gastrointestinal tract and diagnostics of numerous symptoms and diseases located there. This medical procedure is being performed under topical pharyngeal anesthesia or under general anesthesia (it requires the presence of an anesthesiologist).
The most common discomforts during gastroscopy are:
- acid indigestion and other symptoms of the so-called gastroesophageal reflux,
- upper abdomen pain and dyspeptic disorders (nausea, vomiting, postprandial fullness, belching),
- unexplained alarm symptoms such as weight loss, loss of appetite or anemia,
- in diagnostics of the coeliac disease (coeliac syndrome, gluten intolerance),
- before planned surgeries (for example: a gallbladder removal),
- concerning persons with gastrointestinal tract cancer family history,
- controlling and monitoring lesions (for example in a peptic ulcer disease).
Inserting a gastroscope allows not only to see a real or enlarged image of an organ but also to biopsy for histopathology examination and biochemical test which lets a doctor decide about a type of disease (neoplastic lesions/inflammatory lesions) and its treatment.
Colonoscopy is an endoscopic examination of a large bowel (colon) using an endoscope – a colonoscope which is inserted through the anus. It is possible to perform the colonoscopy under anesthesia – it requires the presence of an anesthesiologist.
The colonoscopy is a crucial examination in diagnostic of lower gastrointestinal tract diseases (lower GI tract). It allows the doctor to have a clear view of neoplastic and inflammatory lesions or polyps and large bowel diverticula. These lesions can be sampled or quite often removed completely- if an endoscopic polipectomy was performed (removing colon polyps).
Colonoscopy is for patients with:
- susceptibility to colon cancer,
- erythrocytopenia (anaemia) not related to any causes,
- susceptibility to ulcerative colitis or to Crohn’s disease,
- susceptibility to polyposis,
- bleeding from lower GI tract,
- severe diarrhea not related to any obvious cause,
- sudden, unexplained weight loss, changes in the pattern of bowel movements,
- necessity of performing medical procedures around a colon area, for example removing polyps, stopping bleedings, removing foreign bodies.
Colonoscopy requires an exceptional preparation: the bowel must be emptied. A special diet and laxatives are applied to a patient which are prescribed a day before by a doctor.