An endoscopy is a procedure used to see inside your body so doctors can investigate unusual symptoms, perform certain types of surgery, or remove a small sample of tissue for further analysis.
We offer a vast range of diagnostic (gastroscopy and colonoscopy) and therapeutic procedures (such as ERCP, stenting and feeding tubes) as well as specialist services such as capsule endoscopy, trans-nasal endoscopy and endoscopic ultrasound. Our unit also serves as a Bowel Cancer Screening Centre.
The team prides itself on providing a high quality, safe patient experience. We have achieved high levels on the Global Rating Scale; this looks at clinical quality and the quality of patient experience. The scale looks at a range of standards that include: safety, comfort, quality, equality, aftercare, choice, privacy and dignity.
Our team includes experienced NHS consultants and specialist nursing staff, supported by anaesthetists.
We pride ourselves in providing an excellent service to all our patients, whether they are unwell and need urgent treatment, or are well and coming in for screening.
Our lead consultant is Dr Elmuhtady Said and our lead nurse is Bethan Potter.
Having an endoscopy
The endoscopy service is located within the Day Surgery Unit at Barnsley Hospital.
You will usually be referred to us by your hospital consultant after your outpatient appointment where your need for an endoscopy will have been discussed with you.
An endoscopy is a procedure that uses a long, thin, flexible, lighted tube, called an endoscope, to diagnose or treat a condition within the gastrointestinal tract. It was developed as a diagnostic tool but has become a means of performing procedures which at one time, would have required surgical intervention.
The majority of endoscopic procedures are performed as day cases with local anaesthesia or conscious sedation. The advantages of this over surgery include avoiding the risks and complications of general anaesthesia, prevention of inpatient hospital stays and reducing the risk of patients acquiring infections.
On arrival, your admission nurse will explain what will happen during your stay. You will be asked about your past medical history, present medicine, any allergies that you may have and your arrangements for going home. Do not hesitate to ask the nurse or endoscopist (the doctor) if there is anything about which you are uncertain. Shortly before the test you will change into your nightwear and dressing gown.
Sedation is not routinely given for our endoscopy procedures. If you feel you may need sedation, please inform your admission nurse who will pass this information to the endoscopist undertaking the procedure.
If you have any problems regarding transport please contact the appointments centre on 01226 434343 at least 48 hours before your admission date.
Procedures we offer to patients
A gastroscopy is a test to check inside your throat, food pipe (oesophagus) and stomach, known as the upper part of your digestive system.
This test can help find what's causing your symptoms.
A long, thin, flexible tube with a small camera inside it is passed into your mouth then down your throat and into your stomach.
A gastroscopy can also be used to remove tissue for testing (biopsy) and treat some conditions such as stomach ulcers.
A flexible sigmoidoscopy examines the first part of your colon (bowel). The flexible endoscope is passed through the anus (your bottom) around the first part of the bowel. The process takes around 20 minutes. Before the procedure you will be asked to take some laxatives or have an enema (a tube of liquid medicine which is squeezed into your anus to clean the bowel).
It is often performed to examine symptoms of change of bowel habit or bleeding. You may be referred by your hospital consultant or as part of the national bowel cancer screening programme.
A colonoscopy is a test to check inside your bowels.
This test can help find what's causing your bowel symptoms.
A long, thin, flexible tube with a small camera inside it is passed into your bottom.
You'll be given a laxative so your bowels are empty for the test.
Endoscopic ultrasound (EUS)
It is a method of looking for tiny gallstones and chronic pancreatitis which may not have been picked up on by other scans. It can also be used to assist in determining the causes of abnormal liver tests and upper abdominal pain.
ERCP (endoscopic retrograde cholangio pancreatography).
ERCP stands for endoscopic retrograde cholangio pancreatography. This test uses a type of X-ray.
It's often used to find gallstones.
Bowel cancer screening
NHS bowel cancer screening checks if you could have bowel cancer. It's available to everyone aged 60 to 74 years.
The programme is expanding to make it available to everyone aged 50 to 59 years. This is happening gradually over 4 years and started in April 2021.
You use a home test kit, called a faecal immunochemical test (FIT), to collect a small sample of poo and send it to a lab. This is checked for tiny amounts of blood.
Blood can be a sign of polyps or bowel cancer. Polyps are growths in the bowel. They are not cancer, but may turn into cancer over time.
If the test finds anything unusual, you might be asked to go to hospital to have further tests to confirm or rule out cancer.
After your procedure
After the procedure, the endoscopist will be able to tell you what was seen at examination. However, if biopsies have been taken, the results may take several days. You will then be taken to the ward recovery area where the nursing team will care for you until you feel well enough to go home. You will be given all the medication and information you need for once you get home and what to do if you have any further concerns.