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An endoscopy is an exam that’s used to look at the inside of the digestive tract. During an upper endoscopy, a doctor inserts an endoscope—a flexible tube with a light and camera—through the mouth into the patient’s body, and then views the images on a monitor. This allows the doctor to look at the esophagus, stomach and part of the small intestine.
WakeMed’s gastroenterologists have years of experience in performing endoscopic procedures, and are experts in using the findings to accurately diagnose and treat patients.
WakeMed has a dedicated endoscopy unit at Cary Hospital, with 13 private rooms that are staffed by registered nurses with extensive experience. Generally, light sedation is administered. Then, the doctor inserts a thin, flexible endoscope through the mouth and throat, showing inside the upper digestive tract.
An endoscopy takes 15 to 30 minutes, and isn’t usually painful. Patients may feel slight pressure and discomfort.
Typically, patients will need to fast for eight hours before an upper endoscopy. The patient’s gastroenterologist will explain any individual instructions. Here’s a general list of what to expect:
The doctor or nurse will provide information on when to arrive at the hospital.
After the procedure, the patient is transferred to the endoscopy recovery area for post-op discharge care. If needed, the care team can assist the patient with dressing and getting to the bathroom. Two family members are allowed to wait in the recovery area with the patient.
A nurse will provide instructions for follow-up care at home. Someone will be required to drive the patient home. It's also important to have a responsible adult stay with the patient during the first 24 hours after the procedure. The doctor will instruct the patient as to when they can resume normal activities, such as work, exercise or school.
Patients should also:
If you or someone you care for needs to schedule an endoscopy, we encourage you to make an appointment with one of WakeMed’s experienced gastroenterologists.
3000 New Bern Ave.
Raleigh, NC 27610