"Reassuring staff during gastroscopy without Sedation"

About: Solihull Hospital / General surgery

(as the patient),

Following a Fast Track Referral I attended the Endoscopy Dept. , at Solihull Hospital for a Gastroscopy today. Since learning of my appointment I 'Googled' for as much information as I could - some information found was helpful but a lot was not.

I arrived apprehensive thinking about what I had read, that the procedure might be as long as 45 minutes, that I must remember to breathe, that the local might not work, that I might 'gag', that the mouth guard might damage my fragile teeth, that I would have to undress. Forget it - it was nothing at all like that. The questionnaire by the nurse prior to the procedure took the most time - 10-15 minutes complete with a blood pressure check. You are then taken through and asked to remove your coat, that's all, the doctor sprays your throat with Lignocaine - several small sprays first then a pause and spraying was repeated. Yes there is a burning sensation and a taste slightly of bananas but it wears off fast and your throat goes numb.

You then lie on the couch on your LH side. I placed the mouth guard in myself which was supported by the nurse so that I did not bite down hard with a loose tooth. I was advised of a 1 in a 1000 chance of the procedure removing a loose tooth. It did not happen! I did not have to 'swallow' the nurse just eased the tube down, air was sent down to assist the procedure, the camera did its work and then a biopsy taken. Time taken - just 5 minutes, if that. All over. Yes a bit uncomfortable but worth it because the results were given immediately - no going home wondering.

The numbness in my throat had already started to wear off by the time I left the hospital. You can eat and drink normally after one hour. I admit I won't be first in the queue to have it done again but really it wasn't anything like as bad as I had expected.

The Doctor and his staff were fantastic, advising you along the way about what to expect and talking through the procedure with encouraging and reassuring words. It helped at lot.

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Response from Mark Newbold, Chief Executive, Heart of England Foundation Trust

picture of Mark Newbold

Dear Staratmidnight

Many thanks for posting, I'm pleased your experience was a good one. Google is great but it can mislead, as you found - hopefully in future anyone who googles this topic will find your very informative posting here and be reassured by it!

Best wishes for the New Year

Regards, Mark

  • {{helpful}} {{helpful == 1 ? "person thinks" : "people think"}} this response is helpful

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