Getting Ready for Upper Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (Outpatient)
What is an Upper Endoscopy?
An upper GI endoscopy is a test to look at your esophagus (food tube), stomach and the upper part of the small bowel. This test involves passing a viewing tube through your mouth into the stomach. It is used to find the cause of belly pain, heartburn, and trouble with swallowing or bleeding.
Important – Read 1 week in advance.
Procedure may be cancelled if instructions are not followed
1. 7 days before, you should stop taking the blood thinner Effient® (prasugrel).
2. 5 days before, you should stop taking:
- Blood thinners, such as Coumadin® (warfarin) or Plavix® (clopidogrel).
3. 2 days before, you should stop taking the blood thinner Pradaxa® (dabigatran).
Blood thinning pills should never be stopped without discussing this with the doctor who prescribes it for you. The doctor will give you instructions on how to safely do this. Contact us if you have questions.
4. Diabetic medicines (oral and insulin) will need to be adjusted for the time you're not eating as normal. Please discuss this with your primary doctor.
5. You must have an adult to drive you home or your test will be cancelled. You may take a cab or bus home only if you have a responsible adult with you other than the driver.
6. Plan ahead. For your test, you will be given sedatives which can greatly
affect your judgment. On the day of your test, you will not be able to drive or return to work.
7. Our staff will review your health history, prior surgeries, allergies, and medicines taken. Please bring this information with you.
8. If you use CPAP or BiPAP for sleep apnea, please bring it with you. We will need your machine in order to sedate you safely.
9. If you have an implanted pacemaker or defibrillator, we will need specific information about it before your procedure day. If you haven't already given us this information, please call us during business hours (8:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Monday through Friday) at (608) 263-8097. Ask to speak to the Procedure Coordinator
Day of the Endoscopy
- No solid food, milk, or dairy products until after your test.
- You may drink clear liquids until 4 hours before you arrive (i.e., water, apple juice, 7-up®, Gatorade®). Avoid red liquids.
- Do not take liquid antacids before your test.
- Medicines we want you to take include blood pressure pills, heart pills, breathing medicines, or inhalers. Do not take the pills and supplements mentioned under “Getting Ready.”
- In order to allow time to park and get checked in, please arrive 15 to 20 minutes before your scheduled time. If you are delayed, call us at (608) 263-8097 to let us know you are going to be late. If you are over 30 minutes late, we may have to cancel and reschedule. We do our best to stay on schedule.
- Enter through the hospital entrance. Stop at the Information Desk to have your parking ticket stamped. Check in at the Ambulatory Procedure Center (GI Endoscopy Clinic) in the C5/2 module (just past the gift shop).
- Plan to be with us about 2 hours. Your driver will need to be available in our waiting room or by phone.
A nurse will review your health history and place an IV. The IV is used to give you medicines which make you feel drowsy and relaxed during your test. The test will take 15 – 30 minutes. You will then go to our Recovery Room for about one hour. Your driver may sit with you there. Once awake, you will be given something to drink.
Your doctor will discuss results with you before discharge. You and the doctor who referred you will receive a copy of the report.
After the Endoscopy and for the Rest of the Day
- Do not return to work.
- Do not drive.
- Do not use hazardous machinery.
- Do not make any important decisions.
- Plan to rest.
- Do not drink alcohol.
You should be able to resume normal daily tasks on the day after your test.
You may have a mild sore throat – salt water gargles should help.
You may have some gas pains from the air used to distend your stomach. When you belch you will expel the air and relieve any gas pains.
How to Contact Us
Digestive Health Center, 7 am to 5 pm weekdays, (608)890-5000.
After clinic hours, please call (608)890-5000. This number will connect you to the paging operator. Ask for the Gastroenterology (GI) doctor on call. Give your name and phone number with the area code. The doctor will call you back.
If you live outside of the Madison area, please call 1-855-342-9900.
UW Health Digestive Health Center
750 University Row
(608)890-5000 or (800)342-9900
University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics
GI Procedure Clinic
(608)263-8097 or (800)323-8942
Meriter Hospital Digestive Health Center
202 S. Park Street
The Spanish version of this HFFY is 6509.
The information provided should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed physician should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
Last Updated: 11/11/2013
Copyright © 10/25/2011 University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics Authority. All rights reserved. Produced by the Department of Nursing. HF#4330
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