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Upper endoscopy procedure in Maryland and Rockville, US

Upper endoscopy is a procedure that allows your gastroenterologist to look inside your upper gastrointestinal tract (esophagus, stomach, and duodenum). The test is performed using an endoscope, which is a thin tube with a camera and a light on its end, that the doctor inserts through your mouth down to the duodenum (the first part of the small bowel). The images are transmitted from the scope to a monitor so the doctor can see the inside of your GI tract. The scope also has a channel that the doctor can use to insert instruments and perform therapeutic interventions such as taking biopsies or treating a bleeding ulcer.

Millions of endoscopies are performed every year. The test is very safe, effective, and well-tolerated. Upper endoscopy is used to evaluate and treat many conditions such as abdominal pain, acid reflux, Barrett’s esophagus, difficulty swallowing, ulcers, and tumors.

Preparing for Your Upper Endoscopy:

You will receive specific instructions when you are scheduled for the procedure explaining the preparation process. This is usually very simple as you do not need to drink any cleansing solution before an upper endoscopy. You can not eat any solid food the day of your procedure but you can usually continue to drink clear liquids up to four hours before your procedure.

Before the procedure, you will be evaluated by the anesthesia team and the nursing staff. You will be asked to put a gown on. An intravenous access will be placed and your vital signs checked. Your doctor will talk to you about the risks, benefits, and alternatives of the procedure and you will be asked to sign an informed consent form to give the doctor permission to perform the procedure.

The Endoscopy Procedure (EGD):

The upper endoscopy is performed in a private room with only your gastroenterologist, the anesthesiologist, and the nurse and tech assisting in the procedure present in the room. Sedation will be administered through the IV line and you will be asleep and comfortable. The endoscope is inserted through the mouth and advanced to the first part of the small bowel called the duodenum. Your doctor will carefully examine your upper GI tract looking for various conditions such as inflammation, ulcers or damage from acid reflux. If any abnormality is noted a biopsy can be taken. Biopsies are small pieces of tissues that are taken from the GI tract and sent to pathology to be looked at under the microscope.

After the Endoscopy:

An upper endoscopy usually takes less than 15 minutes. When the procedure is over, the sedation will be stopped and you will wake up and be taken to the recovery room. Most patients wake up not even realizing that the procedure has occurred. After the sedation completely wears off, your doctor will talk to you about the procedure and discuss with you the findings and the recommendations.

You will need someone to take you home after the procedure as after receiving sedation you are not allowed to drive, go to work or leave the endoscopy unit by yourself. The next day you will be back to your normal routine.


Frequently Asked Questions:


Who performs the endoscopy procedure?

Your endoscopy will be performed by one of our board-certified gastroenterologists. Our endoscopy doctors are recognized as top doctors in Maryland and the Washington DC metropolitan area.


Is the endoscopy painful?

No. You will receive sedation before the procedure is started. You will be asleep, but you will continue breathing on your own. When the endoscopy is finished, the anesthesia medication will be stopped and then you wake up in a few minutes. You will not feel the procedure and in many cases, patients don’t even realize the procedure was done.


Do you perform endoscopies in Rockville, Maryland?

Yes. We perform endoscopies and colonoscopies at Maryland Surgery Center in Rockville, Maryland.


Do you perform endoscopies in Frederick, Maryland?

Yes. We perform endoscopies and colonoscopies at the GI Wellness Center of Frederick in Frederick, Maryland.


Who needs an endoscopy?

Endoscopy is a diagnostic procedure. People with certain symptoms such as upper abdominal pain, acid reflux, nausea, and vomiting may require an endoscopy for evaluation. There are other conditions that require an endoscopy which you should discuss with your healthcare provider.


How often do I need an endoscopy?

In most cases, you only need an endoscopy if you have symptoms. We do not repeat endoscopies on a regular basis unless you are diagnosed with certain conditions such as Barrett’s esophagus or if you have certain syndromes that require surveillance. 


How do I prepare for my endoscopy?

Unlike colonoscopy, you do not need to drink a bowel prep before your endoscopy. You will need to stop eating and drinking after midnight, the night before your procedure.


Do you perform endoscopy near me?

For your convenience, we perform endoscopy and colonoscopy procedures in Rockville, Montgomery County, Maryland, as well as in Frederick, Maryland.


What is the endoscopy cost?

An endoscopy is a test that is covered by your medical insurance. If you do not have insurance, the average endoscopy price is around $1,000 to $1,200. This includes the surgery center fee and the anesthesia fee.


Can I take my medications on the day of my endoscopy?

Your doctor will go over your medications and let you know if anything needs to be stopped or held before your procedure.


Can I resume my activities after the endoscopy?

You will not be able to drive, operate heavy machinery, or make important life decisions, on the day of your endoscopy. The next day, you will be back to normal.

Will I go home after my endoscopy?

Yes, you will be able to go home usually within 30 minutes to an hour after finishing your endoscopy.


Where can I find an endoscopy doctor near me?

At Digestive Care Specialists, we are available to serve patients in our community and we see many patients from Maryland, Washington DC, and Virginia. We offer convenient locations in Montgomery County and Frederick County, Maryland. We also offer televisits so you only need to come to us in person for your procedure.