Upper Gastrointestinal Endoscopy
How It Feels
You may notice a brief, sharp pain when the intravenous (IV) needle is placed in a vein in your arm. The Reference local anesthetic Opens New Window sprayed into your throat usually tastes slightly bitter and will make your tongue and throat feel numb and swollen. Some people report that they feel as if they cannot breathe at times because of the tube in their throat, but this is a false sensation caused by the anesthetic. There is always plenty of breathing space around the tube in your mouth and throat. Remember to relax and take slow, deep breaths.
During the test, you may feel very drowsy and relaxed from the sedative and pain medicines. You may have some gagging, nausea, bloating, or mild abdominal cramping as the tube is moved. If you are having pain, alert your doctor with an agreed-upon signal or a tap on the arm. Even though you won't be able to talk during the procedure, you can still communicate.
The suction machine used to remove secretions may be noisy but does not cause pain. The removal of biopsy samples is also painless.
You will feel groggy after the test until the medicine wears off, usually in a few hours. Many people report that they remember very little of the test because of the sedative given before and during the test.
After the test, you may belch and feel bloated for a while. You may also have a tickling, dry throat or mouth; slight hoarseness; or a mild sore throat. These symptoms may last several days. Throat lozenges and warm saltwater gargles can help relieve the throat symptoms. Do not drink alcohol after the test.
|By:||Reference Healthwise Staff||Last Revised: Reference March 7, 2012|
|Medical Review:||Reference E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Reference Jerome B. Simon, MD, FRCPC, FACP - Gastroenterology