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Urgent endoscopy

Last reviewed dd mmm yyyy. Last edited dd mmm yyyy

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Urgent upper gastrointestinal tract endoscopy is indicated in people with bleeds. Ideally it should be:

  • combined with resuscitation of the patient
  • conducted in a site with full facilities
  • within 18 hours of the start of the bleed

Problems in the acute situation include:

  • failure to intubate
  • misinterpretation of endoscopic images
  • risk to the patient and to the endoscopic equipment

Stigmata of a recent bleed include:

  • a clot in an ulcer base } if these are present there
  • oozing blood } is a 50% likelihood of a
  • a visible vessel } rebleed; without it is 5%

Procedures available to the endoscopist include Yag laser, topical sprays, contact probes and injection.

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