If you have symptoms that indicate a possible problem in your esophagus, stomach, or the upper part of your small intestine, the team at Digestive & Liver Health Specialists may recommend a procedure called an esophagogastroduodenoscopy (EGD).
Gastroenterologists are specialists in endoscopic procedures, so it only takes about 15-30 minutes to perform your EGD and identify and treat any problems in your upper GI tract.
If you have questions or need to schedule an EGD procedure, call one of the offices in Nashville, Hendersonville, or Smyrna, Tennessee, or use the online booking feature.
What is an EGD?
An EGD is more commonly known as an “upper GI” endoscopy. Medically, EGD stands for esophagogastroduodenoscopy.
An EGD is an examination of the upper part of your gastrointestinal (GI) tract. This includes your esophagus, stomach, and the first part of your small intestine called the duodenum.
To perform an EGD, your doctor at Digestive & Liver Health Specialists uses an endoscope. The endoscope consists of a thin, flexible tube containing a high-definition camera and fiber optic lighting.
When your doctor gently guides the scope through your mouth and digestive tract, the camera transmits detailed images that allow a close visual examination of the tissues lining your GI tract.
When might I need an EGD?
You may need an EGD to diagnose the cause of symptoms such as indigestion, difficulty swallowing, nausea, vomiting, bleeding, and upper abdominal pain. A few of the conditions often diagnosed during an EGD include:
- Gastroesophageal reflux disease
- Gastric or duodenal ulcer
- Esophageal varices (large veins)
- Hiatal hernia
- Crohn’s disease
Abnormal veins in your esophagus and stomach may also be signs of liver disease such as cirrhosis.
What should I expect during an EGD procedure?
You receive detailed instructions on how to prepare for your EGD. You may need to adjust your medication schedule if you take certain drugs, including blood thinners. You also shouldn’t eat or drink for at least eight hours before the exam.
When you come in for your EGD, your provider at Digestive & Liver Health Specialists gives you mild sedation and a local anesthetic for your throat. Then they insert the endoscope and your upper GI tract is carefully examined.
During your EGD, specialized instruments can be passed through the endoscope to perform procedures and treat problems that are detected.
For example, your doctor at Digestive & Liver Health Specialists may take a biopsy, remove polyps or tumors, stop bleeding, open a blockage, or remove objects.
Your EGD only takes about 15-30 minutes, then you’ll spend some time in recovery before having someone drive you home.
You may have a mild sore throat for a short time after the procedure. If a large polyp was removed, you may experience some bleeding. Otherwise, side effects are rare.