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Endoscopy refers primarily to colonoscopy and EGD (esophagogastroduodenoscopy).

The colonoscopy refers to a visual inspection of the colon with a lighted flexible scope, whereas the EGD involves examining the esophagus, stomach, and first portion of the upper GI tract (the duodenum).

These procedures are commonly done together under sedation as an outpatient. Patients can expect to have a prep the day before for a colonoscopy, but no prep is generally necessary before an EGD.

These procedures are done for numerous reasons, but most commonly to asses the GI tract for cancer, tumors, polyps, ulcers, and sources of bleeding. In addition, generally after age 50, a screening colonoscopy is recommended for most patients, although this age may vary with individual circumstances.

Both procedures are well tolerated and in most cases you can expect to get back to work or normal activities by the next day. A regular screening schedule of a colonoscopy every 5 years will greatly reduce your possibility of getting colon cancer.


Link to the American Board of Surgery
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