Gastroscopy (upper GI endoscopy) is a procedure that uses an endoscope (a flexible tube with a camera) to see inside the upper digestive tract – including the oesophagus, stomach and the first part of the small intestine (duodenum).
During an upper endoscopy the flexible tube is inserted into the mouth and carefully passed through the oesophagus, into the stomach and duodenum. The camera at the end of the endoscope transmits the image to the monitor, which allows close examination of the lining of the digestive tract.
Gastroscopy can be used to determine the cause of abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, anaemia, bleeding in the upper digestive tract, gastric reflux, unexplained weight loss and swallowing difficulties.
During the procedure, biopsies (small tissue sample) can be taken, bleeding ulcers can be treated, and stuck objects (including food) can be removed.