2016-06-16 20:53:46 UTC

Upper GI Endoscopy 103: Preparation

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There are important steps you must take to safely get ready for your upper GI endoscopy. These are general instructions. Be sure to follow any instructions given to you by your doctor.  


Your doctor or nurse will review the steps with you and make sure that you know how you need to get ready and what you can expect during and after the test. If you have any questions, be sure to bring them up with the doctor or nurse.  

  • Give your doctor a list of all the medications you are taking and any allergies you have.
    • The list should include both prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) drugs, like aspirin, NSAIDs or vitamins or supplements.
    • Ask your doctor before the test if any of your medications should be taken on the day of your upper GI endoscopy.
    • Ask your doctor before the test if any of your medications should not be taken before your upper GI endoscopy.
    • Ask your doctor before the test if you should take your medications the night before your upper GI endoscopy.
  • Tell your doctor if you:
    • Have diabetes and what medications you are on for it.
    • Are taking blood thinners or have bleeding or blood-clotting problems.
    • Have a pacemaker or other implanted electromedical devices.
    • Have had stomach or bowel surgery, swallowing problems or other gastrointestinal (GI) problems.
    • Have heart, lung or any other health problems that may need special care before the test.
  • Do not eat or drink at all in the 10 hours before your endoscopy. Having anything in your stomach could offset the test. If you do not remember the time of your appointment, call your doctor.
  • If your doctor plans to give you medicine to block pain and make you feel sleepy, you will not be allowed to drive a car, work or make important decisions after the test. You must have someone with you to review the discharge instructions and to drive you home after the test.
  • Plan to rest at home for the rest of the day after your test. 

An upper GI endoscopy can be done as an outpatient procedure in your doctor’s office, outpatient surgical center or hospital. Be sure you know exactly where you need to go the day of your procedure, as it may not be the same as your doctor’s office.

Be sure to ask your doctor or nurse if there is anything you do not understand.  


Upper GI Endoscopy – What to Know:
  • An upper GI endoscopy is a test to look at your esophagus (tube that links your mouth and stomach), stomach and small intestine.
  • This test can help find the cause of certain GI health issues.
  • An upper GI endoscopy can also help treat some health issues.
  • You will be given medicine to block pain and make you feel sleepy, so you won’t feel much during the test.


© AGA, September 2017

©AGA, July 2016

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