What is an EGD?
Upper endoscopy, also known as EGD, is a procedure in which a thin scope with a light and camera at its tip is used to look inside the upper digestive tract — the esophagus, stomach, and first part of the small intestine, called the duodenum. The esophagus is a muscular tube connecting the throat with the stomach. Lined with moist pink tissue called mucosa, it measures about 8 inches long. The esophagus runs behind the windpipe and heart, and in front of the spine. The main function of the esophagus is to propel food and liquid down into the stomach for digestion. There are many diseases that can affect the esophagus, including heartburn (GERD), eosinophilic esophagitis, Barrett’s esophagus, hiatal hernia, esophageal spasm, infectious esophagitis, and cancer.
The stomach is also examined during an EGD. It’s primary job is break down food, using its natural acidic environment to aid in extracting all the nutrients that we eat. Diseases that can affect the stomach include H.pylori gastritis, pernicious anemia, gastroparesis, peptic ulcer disease, and other atypical diseases.
Lastly, the duodenum, which is the final part of the digestive tract screened during an EGD, is the first portion of the small intestine. The duodenum is about 10 in. (25 cm) long and curved, almost forming a circle. It is largely responsible for the breakdown of food, using digestive enzymes, bile, and pancreatic juice. Celiac disease and other infectious diseases can affect the duodenum.
Why might I need an EGD?
If you are experiencing symptoms such as trouble swallowing, continuous vomiting, upper belly or chest pain, or coughing blood, do not hesitate to call us Chicago Office Phone Number 312-929-3140 and make an appointment for a consultation. We are dedicated to serving our patients by providing information needed to help you make informed decisions about your health. An EGD can identify disorders you may be unaware of having.
What should I expect during my EGD?
We are committed to keeping you comfortable and relaxed, and our highly trained team is prepared to administer IV conscious sedation to our patients. You will be asleep during you EGD, so you will feel and remember nothing. Most often, this procedure takes 20 minutes, followed by a 30-minute recovery. We will provide you with instructions on how to prepare for your EGD, and you can also read about them here.