What is endoscopy?

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Endoscopy is a procedure that allows us to insert a small camera through a passage way of the body, allowing us to look inside an organ.  Endoscopes also have channels that allow the doctor to passvarious tools used to grasp or snare foreign objects.  Anendoscope couldbe used to remove some ingested items from theesophagus, stomach, asmall portion of the upper intestines, and eventhe trachea if theobject is accidentally inhaled.  Inhaledobjects, in some instances,  could obstruct your pet’s airway, orpotentially migrate to the lungs.  While endoscopes are wonderful tools for veterinarians, they have their limitations.  They are not able to remove all foreign objects,  and your pet may still require surgery.

Endoscopy is an excellent,  non-invasivediagnostic tool that acts as the veterinarian’s “eyes” andit is alsoused for investigating gastrointestinal disorders.  Biopsiescan also be collected through the endoscope using specialinstruments,  allowing for diagnosis of GI disorders, cancerous growths,  polyps, andmore.  A common reason for endoscopy is to investigatechronic vomiting problems.  Colonoscopy(an endoscopic procedure wherethe tube is inserted into the rectum)  can be used to help diagnoselarge bowel disease.  Mild anesthesia istypicallyrequired to keep your pet relaxed and still during theendoscopicprocedure; however, the amount of anesthesia and subsequentrecoverytime is far less than that required for a major surgicalprocedure.

Very few veterinarians are trained to performendoscopic procedures.  Infact, according to the October 2010, Volume22 issue of Veterinary Practice News, “less than 5% of U.S.  veterinarians are trained in the modality”.  Triangle Veterinary Referral Hospitalis extremelyproud to be among the few hospitals that provide thisservice.  Weunderstand that your pet is a well loved member of yourfamily, and is honored to work alongside your primary care veterinarian intheir care.