Endoscopy - Lower GI
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What is a Lower GI Endoscopy?

A lower GI endoscopy is a diagnostic procedure used by your doctor to inspect the inside of your rectum and colon. While it's considered a surgical procedure, endoscopy does not involve an incision.

Instead, your doctor will pass a flexible tube, called an endoscope through your anus and into your rectum and colon.

This tube has a tiny video camera mounted on its tip.

It also contains a small tool used for taking tissue samples.

Your doctor can use the endoscope to inspect the entire lower half of your digestive system.

Your doctor can use the endoscope to inspect the entire lower half of your digestive system.

In some cases, the shape of the colon makes it impossible to pass the endoscope as far into the body as the doctor would like.

Your doctor may decide to take a series of x-rays - or even to perform surgery - in order to inspect the hidden area.

Reasons for undergoing a lower GI endoscopy vary. You may have been suffering from one or more of a number symptoms - including blood in your stool, weight loss, chronic irregularity or other problems associated with the digestive system.

Some gastrointestinal symptoms can be warning signs of serious medical problems and you should take your doctor's recommendation to have an endoscopy very seriously.

Luckily, the vast majority of medical problems diagnosed by endoscopy are treatable and you should look forward to improved health and comfort as a result of the information gathered during the procedure.

To create a better viewing area, your doctor may introduce air into your colon, which may cause you to have a feeling of fullness.

The doctor will then lubricate your rectum and gently insert the endoscope, guiding it into your colon.

You may feel some pressure or tugging, but you shouldn't feel pain.

To better examine abnormal-looking tissues, your doctor may choose to take one or more biopsies.

Small instruments sent through the interior of the endoscope are able to painlessly remove small samples of tissue with a small scissor like tool by simply snipping them free.

Finally, after a thorough exam, the endoscope is carefully removed.

Any tissue specimens removed during the procedure will be sent immediately to a lab for microscopic analysis. Your doctor will tell you when to expect results from those tests.
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