An endoscopy is a procedure that allows a doctor or nurse to look at areas of your gastrointestinal tract. They can look down the endoscope and see if there is any inflammation or any other abnormalities. By using the endoscope, samples (biopsies) can be taken of any abnormal looking tissues.
There are two types of Gastrointenstinal endoscopy; Upper and Lower.
Upper Gastrointenstinal endoscopy looks at your gullet and stomach and can show what is wrong if you are having difficulties with swallowing, indigestion, heartburn or nausea.
Lower Gastrointenstinal endoscopy, involves a colonoscopy or sigmoidoscopy, which is recommended for changes in bowel habits, blood in the stool, unexplained anaemia and as a screening test for colon cancer.
An endoscopy can be carried out at one of four locations throughout the Northern Trust. They are:
- Endoscopy Unit at Whiteabbey Hospital
- Endoscopy Unit at Mid Ulster Hospital
- Endoscopy Unit at Antrim Area Hospital
- Day Procedure Unit at Causeway Hospital