A minimally invasive procedure to assess digestive or gastrointestinal and lung diseases is called endoscopic ultrasound or EUS.
This procedure uses high-frequency sound waves to produce detailed images of the lining and walls of your chest and digestive tract, nearby organs such as the liver, lymph nodes and pancreas.
EUS allows your doctor to biopsy fluid and tissue from your chest or abdomen for analysis when combined with a procedure called fine-needle aspiration and this can be minimally invasive alternative to exploratory surgery.
This procedure can also be used in treatments such as draining pseudocysts.
2 Reasons for Procedure
There are many reasons to decide to undergo an endoscopic ultrasound.
The cause of symptoms such as the chest or abdominal pain can be detected because of EUS and to determine the extent of disease in your digestive tract and lungs.
EUS may help in the evaluation of:
cancer of the colon, lung, esophagus, stomach or pancreas, rectal cancers and ampullary
Consult your doctor if you are experiencing these symptoms.
4 Preparing for your Procedure
In order to prepare for the endoscopic ultrasound your doctor may ask you to:
fast before EUS to make sure your stomach is empty
prepare your rectum if it is done in the rectal area or you may be asked to take laxative or have an enema to follow a liquid diet before the procedure
stop taking certain medications such as blood thinners that can increase your risk of bleeding if fine-needle aspiration is performed during EUS or if you have high blood pressure or diabetes
plan ahead for your recovery
5 What to Expect
Here you can find out what to expect from your endoscopic ultrasound.
Your doctor will use an endoscope that will pass through your mouth and through your digestive tract.
A transducer which is a small ultrasound device will be used to produce sound waves that create a precise image of the surrounding tissues including your lymph nodes in the chest.
If you have a fine-needle aspiration with EUS, your doctor will pass a second curved device into your digestive tract and this will guide a very slender needle to your lymph nodes and tumors or other abnormalities.
This needle will extract tissue and fluid for analysis and this can last up to one hour.
6 Procedure Results
Understanding the results of your endoscopic ultrasound will be made possible by your doctor.
A gastroenterologist who specializes in digestive diseases and a pulmonologist who specializes in lung diseases with special training in EUS will interpret the EUS images.
A pathologist who is trained in analyzing biopsies will then report the test results if you have a fine-needle aspiration.
Your doctor will also discuss the results and findings and the next steps that you need to do.
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