The experience you can trust for the important tests you need.
We understand that visiting the gastroenterologist may be a new experience for you and that you may be in pain or worried about your health. That’s why all the staff at Advanced Gastroenterology focus on making you feel comfortable and confident in our care. Dr. Samuel K. Sim, Dr. Frank Yeh, and our medical team take extra care to listen to your concerns, answer all your questions and thoroughly explain your condition and treatment options.
ColonoscopyThe doctor uses a lighted tube to look inside all or your colon. The doctor will be looking for a growth that could be cancer or a polyp that could turn into cancer. If he sees something that concerns him, he can take a piece of the growth and test it for cancer. Read more..
Procedure: a colonoscopy involves the use of a colonoscope - a long, thin, flexible instrument connected to a camera and video display monitor. The doctor inserts this into the rectum and moves it slowly through the entire colon looking for any abnormal tissue growths. If the doctor notices anything of concern he is able to take a biopsy (small tissue sample) immediately.
Benefits: a colonoscopy is performed to identify and/or correct a problem in the colon. The test enables a diagnosis to be made and a specific treatment given. If a polyp is found, it can be removed at that time, eliminating future surgery. If a bleeding site is identified, treatment can be administered to stop the bleeding. Other treatments can be given through the endoscope when necessary.
Risks: Bloating and distension typically occur for about an hour after the exam until the air is expelled. Serious risks with colonoscopy however, are very uncommon.
Alternatives: Alternative tests to colonoscopy include a barium enema or other types of x-ray exams that outline the colon and allow a diagnosis to be made.
Upper Endoscopy/Esophagogastroduodenoscopy (EGD)Upper GI endoscopy, sometimes called EGD (esophagogastroduodenoscopy), is a visual examination of the upper intestinal tract using a lighted, flexible fiber optic or video endoscope, which is usually performed on an outpatient basis. Read more..
Procedure: Upper GI endoscopy, sometimes called EGD (esophagogastroduodenoscopy), is a visual examination of the upper intestinal tract using a lighted, flexible fiber optic or video endoscope, which is usually performed on an outpatient basis. The throat is often anesthetized by a spray or liquid. Intravenous sedation is usually given to relax the patient, deaden the gag reflex and cause short-term amnesia. For some individuals who can relax on their own and whose gagging can be controlled, the exam is done without intravenous medications. The endoscope is then gently inserted into the upper esophagus. The patient can breathe easily throughout the exam. Other instruments can be passed through the endoscope to perform additional procedures if necessary. For example, a biopsy can be done in which a small tissue specimen is obtained for microscopic analysis. A polyp or tumor can be removed using a thin wire snare and electrocautery (electrical heat). The exam takes from 15 to 30 minutes, after which the patient is taken to the recovery area. There is no pain with the procedure and patients seldom remember much about it. Benefits: An upper GI endoscopy is performed primarily to identify and/or correct a problem in the upper gastrointestinal tract. This means the test enables a diagnosis to be made upon which specific treatment can be given. If a bleeding site is identified, treatment can stop the bleeding, or if a polyp is found, it can be removed without a major operation. Other treatments can be given through the endoscope when necessary.
Risks: A temporary, mild throat irritation sometimes occurs after the exam. Serious risks with upper GI endoscopy, however, are very uncommon. One such risk is excessive bleeding, especially with removal of a large polyp. In extremely rare instances, a perforation, or tear, in the esophagus or stomach wall can occur. These complications may require hospitalization and, rarely, surgery. Quite uncommonly, a diagnostic error or oversight may occur. Due to the mild sedation, the patient should not drive or operate machinery following the exam. For this reason, someone else should be available to drive the patient home.
Alternatives: Alternative tests to upper GI endoscopy include a barium x-ray and ultrasound (sonogram) to study the organs in the upper abdomen. Study of the stools, blood and stomach juice can provide indirect information about a gastrointestinal condition. These exams, however, do not allow for a direct viewing of the esophagus, stomach and duodenum, removing of polyps or taking of biopsies.
Flexible SigmoidoscopyFlexible Sigmoidoscopy lets your doctor examine the lining of the rectum and a portion of the colon (large intestine). Read more..
Procedure: Your doctor will insert a flexible tube about the thickness of your finger into your anus and slowly advance it into the rectum and lower part of your colon. As your doctor withdraws the sigmoidoscope, he will carefully examine the lining of the intestine.
Benefits: The benefits of sigmoidoscopy can include the following:
- It is often possible to determine the specific cause of symptoms.
- Conditions such as colitis and diverticulosis can be monitored to determine effectiveness of treatment.
- Polyps and tumors can be discovered at an early stage.
Risks: Bloating and bowel distension are common due to the air inflated into the bowel. This usually lasts only 30 to 60 minutes. If biopsies are done or if a polyp is removed, there may be some spotting of blood. However, this is rarely serious. Other uncommon risks include a diagnostic error or oversight, or a tear (perforation) of the wall of the colon which might require surgery.
Alternatives: Alternative testing includes barium enema x-ray exams. Additionally, the stools can be examined in a variety of ways to uncover or study certain bowel conditions. However, a direct look at the lower rectum and lower bowel by sigmoidoscopy is by far the best method of examining this area.
For additional information please go to our medical library.