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Published: June 18, 2020

Upper Endoscopy vs. Colonoscopy

Upper Endoscopy vs. Colonoscopy 


An Upper Endoscopy or esophagogastroduodenoscopy or EGD is a procedure performed by a trained gastroenterologist or surgeon passes a flexible tube with light and camera through the mouth with direct visualization and assessment of oropharynx, esophagus, stomach, and proximal duodenum.




Indications: Dysphagia, foreign body, nausea and vomiting, bleeding, IBD, obtain tissue biopsy, abdominal pain, iron deficiency anemia 


What to expect before, during, and after procedure? 

  • How to prep? Written instructions will be provided that include important information such as when to fast prior to procedure,  and when to stop certain home medications i.e blood thinners. 
  • Prior procedure: Once arriving at your specific time, you will then meet with Endoscopy and Anesthesia staff for pre-procedure preparations such as vitals, reviewing medical chart, and IV access. 
  • During the procedure: You will lie on the left side with insertion of bite block. Once sedated, the flexible scope will enter through your mouth into the esophagus, stomach, and 1st part of the small intestines. The camera will feed images to a monitor in which the  gastroenterologist will assess and interpret in order to proceed with further evaluation such as biopsies. 
  • After the procedure: You will be taken to the recovery room and monitored until fully recovered. We advise patients not to drive and it is very important to have a driver. Once home, we recommend some R&R. The next day we advise patients to proceed with normal activity.


A colonoscopy is a procedure performed by a trained gastroenterologist or surgeon inserting a long flexible tube through rectum while the patient is sedated. The tube is attached with light and a camera that will assess and interpret findings from the exam. 


Indications: screening, history of colon polyps, positive cologuard, heme positive stool, lower bleeding, iron deficiency anemia, abnormal imaging, IBD (ulcerative or Crohn’s).


What to expect before, during, and after procedure? 

  • How to prep? A prep kit will be sent to your pharmacy and you will receive prep instructions that includes detailed information regarding when to start prep, your diet during that time, and what medications should be paused at that time.
  • Prior to procedure: Once completing prep, you will arrive at the endoscopy facility (our Vinehaven office, Gateway Surgery Center, or Atrium Cabarrus Hospital) at your scheduled time. You will then meet with the endoscopy staff and anesthesia team to go over vitals, review your chart, and then assess IV access. 
  • During procedure: You will lie in the left lateral position. Once sedated, flexible colonoscope will be inserted through rectum, sigmoid colon, descending colon, transverse colon, ascending colon, and intubate to the terminal ileum to access mucosal abnormality, polyps, masses and or diverticulosis. Therapeutic interventions may be needed if evidence of polyps, exposed active small bleeding vessels or evidence of mucosal abnormality. 
  • After procedure: You will be taken to the recovery room and monitored until fully recovered. It is important you have a driver. We recommend you relax the day of and can eat a regular diet. The next day we recommend returning to a normal schedule.


Call us today to talk to one our providers about whether you need an upper endoscopy or colonoscopy, (704) 783-1840!





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Northeast Digestive Health Center
1070 Vinehaven Drive NE
Concord, North Carolina 28025
Phone: (704)783-1840
Fax: (704)783-1850
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