Deanna M. Neff, MPH
Endoscopic ultrasonography (EUS) is used to view the walls of your digestive tract and other nearby organs. An ultrasound uses sound waves to make images of the inside of the body. In an EUS, the ultrasound probe is passed down the throat or up the rectum and into digestive tract.
EUS may be used to:
Complications are rare, but no test is completely free of risk. If you are planning to have EUS, your doctor will review a list of possible complications, which may include:
Factors that may increase the risk of complications include:
Be sure to discuss these risks with your doctor before the test.
Leading up to the test, your doctor may instruct you to:
In most cases, it is okay to take
and other blood-thinning medicines before the test. Ask your doctor if you take these medicines.
Your doctor may spray your throat with a local anesthetic. This will numb your throat, so you will not feel discomfort. You may also be given a sedative. This will help you to relax and reduce anxiety.
In most cases, you will lie on your left side. A thin, flexible tube, called an endoscope, will be inserted either through your throat or anus. The endoscope will have an ultrasound probe on the end of it. The ultrasound machine will create images of the digestive tract. When the imaging is done, your doctor will gently pull the endoscope out.
In some cases, the doctor might use the ultrasound to help take a biopsy or drain a cyst. If this happens, the doctor will insert tools through the endoscope to the area in question.
After the test, you will recover in a special area. Your throat may be a little sore. Slight bloating is normal from the air and water that entered the digestive tract.
When you return home, do the following to help ensure a smooth recovery:
EUS is slightly uncomfortable.
Your doctor may talk to you about the results right away. If you had a biopsy, it may take longer to receive results.
After the test, call your doctor if any of the following occurs:
In case of an emergency, call for medical help right away.
American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy
and Digestive and Kidney Diseases
Canadian Association of Gastroenterology
Crohn's and Colitis Foundation of Canada
Jacobson B, Chak A, et al. Quality indicators for endoscopic ultrasonography.
American Journal of Gastroenterology. 2006;101:898-901.
Quality indicators for endoscopic ultrasonography. AHRQ National Guideline Clearinghouse website. Available at:
http://www.guideline.gov/summary/summary.aspx?doc_id=9298&nbr=4968&ss=6&xl=999. Published April 2006. Accessed June 16, 2009.
Understanding EUS (endoscopic ultrasonography). American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy website. Available at:
http://www.asge.org/PatientInfoIndex.aspx?id=380. Accessed June 16, 2009.
Last reviewed September 2013 by Daus Mahnke, MD
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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