Anaesthesia for Gastroscopy & Colonoscopy

The aim of Gastroscopy is to inspect under direct vision the lining of the oesophagus, stomach and upper part of the small bowel (duodenum) using a flexible telescope ('a Fibreoptic Gastroscope') inserted through the mouth. The procedure requires that the stomach be empty. Alone, this procedure takes about 20 minutes. It is usually performed under light sedation with local anaesthesia spray to the throat.

The aim of Colonoscopy is to visually inspect the inside lining of the large bowel (colon) and, if possible, the last few centimetres of the small bowel (caecum) using a flexible telescope called a 'Fibreoptic Colonoscope'. Uncommonly, complete Colonoscopy may not be possible. The procedure requires that the colon be clean. This involves being on 'clear fluids only' for the day before your procedure and drinking a preparation fluid which will lead to copious watery motions to empty the bowel. Some patients find the preparation fluid unpleasant to taste. The procedure takes between 30 minutes to 1 hour in most cases. It is performed under sedation anaesthesia or light general anaesthesia.

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