What An Esophagodastroduodenoscopy (EGD) Is Like (from a regular persons perspective)

Not so bad.

I’ve had one before years ago, around 4 years ago. I’ve also had a colonoscopy, fun fact. The prep for these procedures is completely different. Luckily, I am only getting the EGD this time around. So I just can’t have food after midnight.

The last thing I remember when getting the EGD is that I don’t remember being conscious because of the propofol they gave me through my IV moments after the doctor walked in. I was out, and then woken up abruptly and sent home. I had normal results, just a little acid in my stomach was all. This was done prior to my gallbladder surgery, they did the whole shebang before I could get that sucker removed. Colonoscopy, EGD, a nuclear test involving CCP (all I know is CCP is the stuff that makes you nauseous), ultrasounds, blood tests, etc.

Reasons I am getting it again:

  • Upper abdominal pain (kind of sharp at times, mostly dull and achy)
  • Irregular bowel movements (yay!)
  • Nausea (this time I’m not sure if it’s drug related)
  • Oh, more abdominal pain. It’s hard to wear a regular bra because where the band sits is uncomfortable. So I’ve been wearing my bralettes with soft bands mostly.

So what could be causing the pain? Not my gallbladder, I had that removed a long time ago due to biliary dyskinesia.

Biliary dyskinesia is a motility disorder that affects the gallbladder and sphincter of Oddi. The motility disorder of the gallbladder is called gallbladder dyskinesia. Patients with this condition present with biliary-type pain, and investigations show no evidence of gallstones in the gallbladder.

The issue I’m having now is strange because I had the exact same symptoms before I had my gallbladder out. So on Friday expect an update, I’ll let you all know what happens(when I am fully conscious). It seems I have never-ending problems and my GI system is a recurring one that needs to be fixed. I think the only reason I am getting it done is so the doctor feels better about saying nothing is wrong aside from IBS (which I don’t believe), because there is colon and stomach cancer in my family. Better safe than sorry.

Here’s what I think the issue really is. I think that the klonopin that I’ve been taking for over 6 months now 3x a day is affecting my liver. My reasons? I had an abnormal pee test that showed bilirubin in my urine. My liver may be taxed, and it just needs a break. It’s a little alarming , but I am not too worried about it.

The doctor performing the procedure is going to check my esophagus, stomach and small intestine taking biopsies of each area.

EGD

So what happens in an EGD?

  • First, they make you pee in a cup. Gotta make sure you’re not pregnant.
  • Then you change into your gown, and get put in a bed.
  • Then the anesthesiologist comes over while they put an IV in you and asks you about a million questions. They just want to make sure you’ve never had any adverse reactions to anesthesia in the past and make sure you wrote down every drug you are on and allergic to.
  • You wait a bit, doctors like to take their sweet ass time.
  • Finally, they wheel you into the procedure room which has a lot of crap and weird instruments in it. Also, try not to think about where those instruments have been.
  • The nurse starts tinkering with things, asking you questions to make you feel more comfortable.
  • Finally the doctor comes in and gives you one last run down of whats going to happen.
  • They make you lay on your left side, and then before you know it you’re out. That nurse pushed a good amount of propofol into your IV. My advice, enjoy that feeling. There is nothing like the specific feeling of anesthesia slowly taking over and it being ok to just give into it. It’s not like you’re doing heroin! This one time, you’re allowed to just have IV drugs knock you into the best sleep you’ll ever have and the feeling just before you close your eyes is personally my favorite feeling in the world. 
  • I do remember them putting a mouth guard in to keep my mouth open and me choking a bit because I have large tonsils and when they are touching I gag. But after that I was frickin’ out.
  • When it’s all over you wake up in a recovery room, and they make you fart. Yes, fart. It’s because they just pumped air into your stomach and need to make sure you can pass it. You can’t leave until you fart.
  • You’ll be a little disoriented but you don’t feel any pain and all you have to do is go home. You need a designated driver, they don’t let you even get this done without one being present when you show up, and they have to stay in the waiting room the entire time.
  • Your throat is going to be sore, but only for a day or two.

They give you a drug to knock you out but keep you just conscious enough for you to cooperate and a drug that will make sure you don’t remember what happened so that there is no trauma or anxiety afterwards. You feel like you’ve been asleep, and you kind of have, but you are in what they call a twilight sleep. Don’t worry about being conscious, you won’t remember anything.

Recovery is less than a day, easy and the next day you’re back to normal. For me I was back to normal less than 6 hours after and eating a frickin’ In-n-Out burger.

And that’s it! It’s an easy, painless procedure that can detect so many kinds of issues and diseases without being as invasive as a traditional surgery or as ambiguous as blood tests or MRI/CT scans. It’s also more comprehensive since the doctor can actually see the areas of concern. So feel good in the fact that you’re getting a helpful test that can tell you a lot through visuals and biopsies, and that it is painless and quick AF (30 minutes or less).

 

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