celiactestingBiopsyWell it is done.  Thursday I had my biopsy to get a good look at my gut for celiac disease.  You may have read here last week about the appointment I had with a gastroenterologist about my family history and my concerns about having celiac disease and not knowing it.  If not, you can read part 1 here.

Now on to part 2 which I experienced Thursday.  If you might be getting an endoscopy and biopsy for celiac testing, this will be good information for you.

First of all, my labs testing my iron and liver functions all came back normal.  My celiac blood panel also came back negative.  I knew this information going into the appointment. 

My procedure was scheduled for 9 a.m. Thursday morning.  That meant I had to stop eating solid food by 11:45 p.m. the night before.  I could have clear liquids (including water and chicken broth) if I wanted until 7 a.m., or two hours before the procedure.

Getting prepped for the endoscopy and biopsy

Getting prepped for the endoscopy and biopsy

Once I got there and was called into the room, my blood pressure was checked, the nurse and I went over my health history and my family’s health history, what medicines I am taking etc.  I watched a short movie about the procedure.  Once that was done, the nurse came back in and prepped me for an IV.  

It was around that time where I waited about 15 minutes.  So I took my camera out and took a selfie (upper right)– not the most attractive….but how great can you look when you are going in to get a medical procedure??

Then the doctor came in and chatted with me a bit.  By now I had heard for the third time how the endoscopy and biopsy works:

  1. First the doctor would spray something called Hurricaine Spray on the back of my throat, numbing it up, making it more comfortable for the endoscope to go down the throat.
  2. Then, they would administer the sedative to relax me.
  3. They explained they would need my help to swallow or gulp to assist the endoscope down my throat, then they would look at the esophagus, stomach and then the upper part of the small intestine.  The intestine is where they would take 4-6 biopsies, which the patient wouldn’t feel.
  4. Some air is used to “puff out” the intestine a bit to give the doctor a better view, as a result, the nurses, video and doctor said I might feel bloated or even belch during the procedure and that was normal.
  5. The actual procedure would only take about 5-10 minutes and then recovery area for about 30 minutes.

So compared to the five points above, here’s what I actually REMEMBER happening to me.

  1. Getting the “Hurricaine” Spray on my throat, which tasted a little like cherries.  But it stung my throat a bit.  And then it numbed up quickly.
  2. Administration of the sedative.  A few needles of the sedative went in.  Within 15 seconds I was starting to feel dizzy.
  3. Waking up in the recovery room. 

I honestly wish I could tell you more detail.  Or do I?  I actually appreciate that I don’t remember a thing.  I hope I cooperated with all of their requests during the procedure.  

Anyway, coming out of the sedative was interesting.  There is a lot I don’t remember, but apparently it was very entertaining for my husband who drove me and picked me up.  He says in the time I was in the recovery room, I asked four times if the doctor had come in yet with any information.  The answer each time was yes, indeed he had, and he didn’t see anything alarming.  

I was a little “wobbly” walking out of the clinic. I also found myself nodding off in the car on the way home.  I ate a bowl of soup and then slept for another hour or so.  I stayed in bed for the remainder of the day– easily getting tired.

Now looking back, with the drugs mostly out of my system, I can say you really need to take the day off.  When I read info from the Mayo Clinic on the endoscopy/biopsy, it stated, “You may also need to take the day off from work. Don’t make any important personal or financial decisions for 24 hours”.  In my opinion there should be no “may” in this discussion.  You can’t go back to work after this procedure.  You could work before hand I suppose.

My throat does hurt now– as if I were sick, but I haven’t had any bloating troubles.  My throat should feel better soon.  Both of those are something you can feel after the procedure.

So if I can leave you with a few takeaways from  my experience:

  • Don’t stress out too much about the procedure.  I was concerned about being awake and getting anxious about the tube going down my throat.  I don’t remember this ever even happening.
  • Please have someone drive you.
  • Please have someone in the recovery room with you.  Although they did print out the information on my endoscopy/biopsy, I wouldn’t know a thing if I was the only person in that room receiving information on my procedure.

I hope this info was helpful.  Best of luck!  If you have any additional helpful hints, please relay them in the comments below!

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