Upper digestive tract diagnostics
Gastroscopy is a diagnostic procedure, where a flexible endoscope is passed over the tongue and then guided into oesophagus, stomach and the duodenum. It is the most precise way of visualizing these organs.
During gastroscopy it is also possible to biopsy samples of the mucosa to test for Helicobacter pylori infection and examine them later in light microscope to search for ulcers, inflammation, malabsorption or other suspicious growths such as cancer.
Gastroscopy can be also used to endoscopically remove polyps, treat oesophageal varices or perform other therapeutic procedures. Therefore it is not only the best method to visualise upper digestive tract but it can also be used to determine the right treatment.
Gastroscopy can be performed if the patients is fasted or if at least 6 hours since the last meal have passed. The patient lies on her/his left side. The pharynx is then anesthetised using lidocaine spray and the patient is given a mouth-guard. Afterwards, the patient has to swallow the endoscope which is the most uncomfortable stage of the examination and requires patient-doctor cooperation. The time of the examination usually does not exceed 10 minutes. Biopsy is painless.