upper GI endoscopy

Posted , 6 users are following.

Had an endoscopy on 21 Jan. Id had one 20 years ago and it was horrible so this time I insisted on sedation. I told the nurse that I had quite a high tolerance to this sort of medication but she assured me that theyd give me the lowest dosage first and would top it up if I needed it. Well within 30 seconds of being given the sedation through an IV in the back of my hand - and not feeling any different - they put the plastic mouth shield in and put the tube down. I couldnt talk to tell them how uncomfortable it was so the whole procedure was once again horrific. I could feel the tube going down and feel it whilst it was down there!

I didnt have a choice of the throat spray because it was either the sedation or the spray, I couldnt have both!

The nurses were great and very reassuring before, during and after but it didnt help me with the discomfort. Why cant they give you enough sedation to really relax you - if thats what you want?

They took a biopsy of a small polyp they found in my stomach and discovered I have gastritis. Ever since I got home Ive had a nasty sore throat and quite severe pain in my stomach and chest area.

I know a lot of people have a good experience but both mine have been dreadful and I will NEVER have one again!!

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10 Replies

  • Posted

    Claire

    I can sympathise and empathise. I have had 5 gastroscopies, one included botox injection and one a failed balloon dilation, and I was conscious and terrified throughout every one (I'm obviously no wimp as I continued to go back for more torture). I had told them repeatedly their conscious sedation did not work on me but they totally ignored me and put me through hell, as if I wasn't suffering enough.

    The last time I went I told them I felt as though I was being punished because I will ill and I still feel this way.

    I, also, have said I will never have another; I love life but I'd take a lethal injection before another endoscopy.

    Jean

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  • Posted

    These doctors need to be sued.
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  • Posted

    I feel so sorry when I read the bad experiences people have had. I had my gastroscopy done privately in Dec '08, although I am not well off by any means, as I had been appalled by what I read on this site and I was absolutely terrified of going to the NHS - maybe unjustifiably. I do know people who have had it done without sedation and have tolerated it well and without trauma, but this just illustrates how different we all are and what is right for one is not for the other. I was treated with respect and given a 6ml slug of midazolan -I think the norm for the NHS is 3ml - AND the throat spray. My memories of the procedure are vague and I was aware at some stage of gagging for England, but at the same time not minding much. I didn't occupy a bed post procedure any longer than an NHS patient would. I know the NHS is strapped, but an additional 3mls + spray per patient can't break the budget surely?
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  • Posted

    i am a 55 year old male and ended up in aed on christmas day with cramping pains in my gut feeling nausea and bloated also sharp pains in my right hand side they thought i presented symptons of an ulcer but said that they weren't sure because i had faceces lodged in my intestines and they would refer me back to my gp who would then refer me for an endoscope i have since had this and they have said there is no infection just that i have got acute gastritis but what i wanted to ask other people on this forum is their sympton i have pain in my right side in the lower part of my stomach and in the right hand side of back continually burping and constipation i am on omiparazole and other tables for constipation and to take before eating i have had a ultrasound and they found nothing in my gallbladder just fatty tissue on my liver i have also been diagnosed with prostate cancer at the same time as having this just waiting to see doctor to decide on which treatment to have so even though i have had mri scans and nuclear scans for this and have been told the prostate cancer is contained and is not spread i still sometimes get very worried especially at night when i get the stomach pain and the back pain would be grateful if anyone could come on and explain their symptons and also can you be referred to a private gastro consultant even though i cant really afford it to to get some reasurrance from a gastro doctor cos it is only my gp telling me is is acute gastritis
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  • Posted

    I can't help Fitzy, but wish all the best of luck.

    I am describing my own experience so that people can read it alongside others and make their own decisions about their own procedure.

    Today I had an endo at a Northern NHS Hosital and is was one of the worst experiences in my life.

    The Staff Nurses in the recovery section were fantastic, explaining the procedure very well and explaining the choices of throat spray or sedation, although throat spray was their preferred choice.

    One nurse walked me into the room where I was met by another 4 people, which made me feel that they needed four people to hold me down while the Dr did what he needed to do. Four people! how bad was it going to be? I soon found out. The nurse introduced a man whose hand I could hold, but I didn't know him, so why would I want to hold his hand?

    More persuasion to use the throat spary followed, but my 1 question as to why all staff say 'spray' and all patients I'd spoken to said 'sedation' was only answered by the Dr saying 'I don't care I'll use Sedation if you want'. I finally agreed to spray, which was very quickly administored followed by the mouth shield (to save the tube from your teeth). I was quickly put into position (laying on your left - you don't even get to see the screen) and the whole thing started very quickly. Hand-holding man took my hand and then the other and held them down on legs and the tube went in with the nurse holding my head and talking to me all the time.

    It was horrific, being held down while a Dr puts a tube down your throat without anesthic is vaguely reminiscent of Victorian Britain. It was brutal and invasive and I had signed a paper to say they could do it! Afterwards I felt terrible and just wanted to get out of there, but had to face the Dr (I was on a trolly and not allowed to walk away) with his results - a photo of a very inflamed esophagus an possible reasons for the inflamation.

    The NHS want you to have the throat spray because a) it's cheaper and b) you have control over yourself and can do the 'breathing' and stop the gagging. I have no evidence, but it is my opinion that the job is harder for them if you choose sedation.

    I'm writing this a 1.00am (8 hours after the experience) because every time I try to sleep I can still feel how my body went limp and started shaking all over. It will pass, but I feel better for writing this.

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  • Posted

    I would like to offer my experience of my endoscopy which is very similar to those above. Mine was done as an Emergency Procedure for a bleeding ulcer. I signed the paper unaware of what was going to happen but was assured I would remember nothing and there was nothing to worry about! I think I was given mild sedation which lasted a few minutes and after that I started gagging and felt I was going to choke. I was then held down by four staff. The panic was awful. The procedure is done like this due to money and this is why you are not offered the choice of being asleep while it is done . However a colleague had this done as a non -emergency and was given a choice of hospital. One of these hospitals did offer the option of being put to sleep and she chose this. Now I have to go back for a repeat in a few weeks and I am dreading it. I have enquired why I have no choice of hospital and my GP has told me it is not a good idea to go to a different hospital to where the original procedure was done. I thought they could share records these days? Everyone who has had such a hideous experience should complain to the NHS and maybe something will get done. I agree that the whole thing is Victorian and unnecessary.and I am thinking of now cancelling my check up and taking my chances.
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  • Posted

    Since my post of 17 April 2012 I would like to tell you all that I have finally got a happy outcome with regards to my follow-up gastroscopy. My GP was still refusing to send me to my preferred hospital whom I knew would give the option of being put to sleep. Instead a pre-endoscopy appointment was made for me at James Cook Hospital where my first endoscopy was done and where I was terrified of returning to due to the previous awful experience. To be honest I expected this appointment to be a waste of time but the nurse thoroughly discussed my concerns with me. She told me that I could request both the throat spray and the sedation and duly added this to my notes and also that i was very distressed. I asked her what if the extra medication was refused on the day of the appointment? She told me that if this happened that I should refuse to have the procedure and go back to my GP. She also told me to check with the staff on the day before signing the consent form. On the day, I was given the lidocaine throat spray and 3mg of Midazolam, followed by an extra 1mg and then another 1mg. ( for the first endoscopy I was only given 3mg of midazolam in total.) As a result of the extra medication I had no recollection whatsoever of the procedure being done and dont even remember coming out of the procedure room! Due to my experience I would advise anyone in a similar position to ask for a pre-endoscopy consultation and make sure that the extra medication is given. If this is refused for any reason then you will have good grounds to go back to your GP and insist on a referral to a hospital for general anesthetic. I have had a very traumatic time with the worry of all this in the last few weeks but I hope my happy ending will help you all. Good Luck!
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  • Posted

    Dear Jank

    I obviously live in the same area as yourself. I am Northeast96 but somehow I had to reregister so am now Sparkplug. I needed surgery for achalasia, diagnosed after a huge number of endoscopies, barium swallows and manometries, and my check-up endoscopy looms once again. I am absolutely terrified each time as their so-called conscious sedation does not work on me and though repeatedly telling them this have been given no reassurances. I was, therefore, greatly interested in the large amount of sedation given to yourself and wonder if this could have something to do with age. Would you mind letting me know what age group you are in, in the hope it will help in my bargaining with the NHS.

    Jean

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  • Posted

    Hello Jean

    My age is 57. I first went to my GP and explained how terrified I was of having a repeat gastroscopy. She would not refer me to my hospital of choice so that I could be put to sleep but she did ring the consultant at James Cook l and I dont know whether it was her or the consultant who made the pre-endoscopy appointment with the nurse. Anyway the nurse told me that she gets patients in all the time who are fearful and it was her who added to my notes about the extra sedation. The nurse told me that when it comes to te day of the procedure if they refuse to give the extra sedation as she had instructed in her notes then I was to tell them that I could not go ahead and go back to my GP to ask for a referral again to Woodlands hospital who will put you to sleep. It is also your right to have a choice of hosptal. If you have'nt done so I would go to your GP and tell them of your fears and ask for a pre-referral. I also rang Patient helpline fro advice who were very good. I hope this helps you as I know what it feels like to be so afraid of this procedure.

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  • Posted

    Hello Jank

    Thanks so much for your quick reply. I fully intend now to approach my GP for some help. Not to have to fear this from now until June/July when I go for check up would be wonderful. Incidentally, I am 75 so whether I would be allowed as much sedation as yourself is open to question. Worth a try for me though.

    Thanks so much.

    Jean

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