Colonoscopy and Upper Endoscopy (EGD)

Colonoscopy and Upper Endoscopy (EGD)

A scope procedure involves placing a special flexible tube with a camera lens at the tip (endoscope) into part of the body. This allows the insides of certain organs to be viewed on a monitor screen. The most common scope procedures are colonoscopy and upper endoscopy (also called EGD). Most patients need some amount of sedation to be comfortable for these procedures.

A colonoscopy is a procedure where a long flexible videoscope is passed up the rectum and into the large intestine (colon) throughout its entire length.

An upper endoscopy is also called an EGD, which stands for EsophagoGastroDuodenoscopy. In this procedure, a flexible videoscope is passed through the mouth down into the esophagus (food tube), then the stomach, and then the duodenum (first part of the small intestine).

If you are going to have a colonoscopy and/or upper endoscopy, you will likely receive sedation medicine from one of our anesthesia providers. The medicine used will probably be propofol (there are some special exceptions to this). Propofol has a very safe track record when used by anesthesia providers. In fact, propofol is used in almost every general anesthetic and most deep sedations that are performed in this country. In most people who have a scope procedure, propofol sedation will cause them to “fall asleep” quickly, remain sleeping and comfortable throughout the procedure, and allow them to wake up quickly, such that they can usually have something to eat and drink within 15-20 minutes of the end of the procedure. It is very unlikely for patients to have nausea after scope procedures. It is also less likely for patients to have memories of their scope procedures if they receive deep sedation with propofol.