There are a number of reasons your doctor may suggest a gastroscopy so it’s difficult to generalise the results. The results of a gastroscopy can be used to help diagnose the cause of your symptoms, remove or biopsy any abnormalities, make sure you’re receiving the best treatment and rule out other conditions.
As with any medical procedure or investigation, there are some potential, but very low risks. The chance of complications depends on the exact type of procedure that you’re having and other factors, including your general health.
Gastroscopy has an excellent safety profile. Serious adverse events are very unlikely and as low as 1 in 10,000. The most common complications are:
- Damage to your teeth, particularly chipping of a tooth or damage to a crown.
- If your stomach isn’t empty, you could vomit and inhale the vomit into your lungs causing pneumonia.
- Temporary low blood oxygen or low blood pressure occurs in up to 11% of procedures involving sedation but isn’t usually a problem.
- Abdominal discomfort or sore throat is possible and could last for a few days.
- Bleeding and perforation of the gut wall are very unlikely, ranging from 1 in 200 to 1 in 10,000 procedures.
- Other possible complications include reactions to the sedation.
Ask your surgeon about the results and risks associated with your procedure. Also ask about their own rates of patient satisfaction and the rate of complications following the procedures they’ve performed.
Check out your hospital
Compare your hospital's golden staph infection and hand hygiene rates.