Upper endoscopies and colonoscopies are highly effective procedures for identifying the sources of problems in your digestive tract. At Gastroenterology on Gramercy Park in New York City, leading gastroenterologists Bharat Sanghavi, MD, and Moushumi Sanghavi, MD, perform these procedures to diagnose the cause of symptoms and treat digestive tract issues. To see if an upper endoscopy or colonoscopy is right for you, click or call to schedule an appointment today.
Upper endoscopies and colonoscopies are both endoscopies, procedures that involve using a long, thin scope with a camera at the end to look inside the digestive tract. The primary difference between them is that they look at different portions of the digestive tract.
An upper endoscopy views your esophagus, stomach, and small intestine by inserting the scope through your mouth. A colonoscopy views your large intestine and rectum by inserting the scope through your anus.
Both upper endoscopies and colonoscopies allow your doctor to determine if there are any abnormalities in the tissues lining your digestive tract.
An upper endoscopy can determine what’s causing symptoms in your esophagus, stomach, and small intestine, such as:
Upper abdominal pain
During an upper endoscopy, your doctor may search for and remove growths called polyps — which are sometimes cancerous — search for ulcers, take tissue samples for analysis, extract objects stuck in your stomach or esophagus, or open areas of your upper digestive tract that have narrowed due to disease.
Colonoscopies can screen for colorectal cancer and diagnose the causes of various large intestinal symptoms, including:
Unexplained weight loss
During a colonoscopy, your doctor may search for and remove abnormal tissue growths, including polyps, which can be cancerous. Your doctor may also take tissue samples to analyze for the presence of a disease.
The most important part of preparing for a colonoscopy is fully clearing out your bowels beforehand. Otherwise, your doctor won’t be able to see inside your colon.
Your doctor at Gastroenterology on Gramercy Park will direct you to follow a clear liquid diet and drink a strong laxative the day before a colonoscopy to give your doctor an unobstructed view. You may also need to limit or avoid high-fiber foods for a few days before that. Upper endoscopies require that you have an empty stomach prior to the procedure, so you’ll need to avoid eating and drinking anything at least six hours before your upper endoscopy.
Upper endoscopies and colonoscopies are generally performed under sedation, so you’ll need to arrange for a method of travel after your procedure. It will not be safe for you to drive.
A colonoscopy should become part of your digestive health routine. If you’re aged 50 or older, you’re at an increased risk of colon cancer and should undergo a colonoscopy at least once every ten years. If you have risk factors such as a family history of colorectal cancer, your doctor may recommend getting colonoscopies more often and beginning at a younger age. Upper endoscopies are typically only ordered as needed to diagnose any symptoms you might experience.
To get an upper endoscopy or colonoscopy, click or call to schedule an appointment with Gastroenterology on Gramercy Park today.