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Discomfort Expected from GI Endoscopy

What Discomfort Should I Expect from GI Endoscopy?

At The Iowa Clinic Endoscopy Center we always start an IV for infusion of fluid by insertion of a small needle into a vein of the arm. Through this IV we can give both a sedative medication and an analgesic or pain reducing medication.

These medications will make you drowsy, but not so sleepy you cannot be aroused or tell us if you are uncomfortable. It is likely, however, that you will have little recall of the procedure or of any discomfort during the examination.

The nurses will also apply the instruments that allow us to monitor your heartbeat, blood pressure and the adequacy of your breathing (oxygen content of your blood). These monitors will be used before, during and after the procedure, until you are fit to go home.

You should expect that, from the time you arrive until you go home, it will take about 2 ½ 3 hours. It will take time to get some details of your history, to start the IV, to talk with the physician about the procedure, to recover from the sedative, to talk again with the physician about the findings or results, and to receive your instructions.

You can expect to feel some discomfort like “gas” following your exam. This discomfort results from the air used to inflate the stomach or colon. In order to see well, the physician will introduce air, and some of this air will remain after the procedure. This air will pass, but you should be careful not to overeat until this discomfort is gone.

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