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What is An ERCP?

Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography is a technique that combines the use of endoscopy and fluoroscopy to diagnose and treat certain problems of the biliary or pancreatic ductal systems. It is primarily performed by highly skilled and gastroenterologists specialists.

Why One Needs To Get ERCP Done?

The most common reasons for ERCP include :

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What Is It Used To Treat?

It is a procedure that looks at the bile ducts. It is done through an endoscope. Bile ducts are the tubes that carry bile from the liver to the gallbladder and small intestine. ERCP is used to treat stones, tumors, or narrowed areas of the bile ducts.

How To Prepare For the Procedure?

Talk with your doctor, arrange for a ride home, and follow your doctor’s instructions. You should talk with your doctor about any allergies and medical conditions you have and all prescribed and over-the-counter medicines. Your doctor may ask you to temporarily stop taking medicines that affect blood clotting or interact with sedatives. You typically receive sedatives during ERCP to help you relax and stay comfortable. Tell your doctor if you are, or maybe, pregnant. If you are pregnant and need ERCP to treat a problem, the doctor performing the procedure may make changes to protect the fetus from x-rays.

What Will Happen During the procedure?

For ERCP, your doctor uses a flexible lighted tube called an “endoscope.” The endoscope, or scope, is about as thick as your index finger. It goes through your mouth into your stomach and the first part of the small intestine called the “duodenum.” Then the doctor puts a very small, flexible plastic tube through the scope and injects some dye that shows up on X-rays. This procedure allows your doctor to see the ducts and how well they are working.

How One Will Feel After the Procedure?

You will most often stay at the hospital for 1 to 2 hours after the procedure so the sedation can wear off. You may have bloating or nausea for a short time and may have a sore throat for 1 to 2 days after the procedure. You can go back to a normal diet once your swallowing has returned to normal. You should rest at home for the remainder of the day.
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