Esophagogastroduodenoscopy (EGD), or Upper Endoscopy, is a procedure used to examine the esophagus, stomach and small intestine using a flexible instrument called an endoscope. EGD is an outpatient procedure involving sedation that typically lasts less than 20 minutes.
Upper endoscopy can help find the cause of unexplained symptoms, such as persistent heartburn, bleeding, pain or nausea. It can also be used to find the cause of abnormal lab tests.
This test can also be used for treatment/evaluation purposes, particularly if you:
- Have cirrhosis or Crohn’s disease
- Need follow-up or additional treatment for a condition that has been previously diagnosed
Some providers may use EGD to take a tissue sample for biopsy as well.
What to Expect
Prior to your upper endoscopy, your gastrointerologist may spray your throat with a local anesthetic or provide a sedative to help you relax. For the procedure, you lie on your side, and your doctor passes the endoscope through your mouth and into the esophagus, stomach and duodenum. Most patients consider the test only slightly uncomfortable, and many fall asleep during the procedure.
Specific instructions for EGD will be provided by your gastrointerologist prior to your procedure, but all patients should prepare to:
- Arrange for a ride home, as EGD involves sedation and you should not drive.
- Do not eat or drink for 6 hours prior.
View Northeast Digestive Health Center's complete EGD prep instructions.