Oesophagoscopy is the examination of your gullet (swallowing tube) while you are under a general anaesthetic. We will do this to investigate problems of the gullet, such as difficult or painful swallowing.
What happens during a oesophagoscopy?
Your surgeon will pass a long metal tube (oesophagoscope) through your mouth into your gullet. This allows the surgeon to look at the inside the gullet to find any problems that may be affecting your swallowing.
We might take a small part of the the lining for laboratory examination, which is called a biopsy.
How will I feel after an oesophagoscopy?
After oesophagoscopy, you may find that your throat hurts because of the metal tubes that are passed through your throat. Any discomfort settles quickly with simple painkillers and usually only lasts a day or two.
Some patients feel their neck is slightly stiff after the operation.
If you have a history of neck problems, you should inform the surgeon about this before your operation.
When will I know the results?
Your surgeon will be able to tell you what has been found and what they did to help you, on the same day as your operation. If any biopsies were taken, these normally take a few days to process in a laboratory. Your surgeon will arrange to see you again for your results.
When can I go home?
Often you can go home the same day as the operation, as long as you have someone with you. Depending on how you feel afterwards, you may need to stay overnight for observation.
Is there any alternative treatment?
Oesophagoscopy is for examining the upper part of the oesophagus.
However, for your lower oesophagus or stomach we will use a fibreoptic gastro-oesophagoscope. A gastroenterologist performs this type of examination.