Endosonography/Endoscopic Ultrasound (EUS)

Endoscopic ultrasound (EUS) involves passing a thin tube (endoscope) through your mouth, down your esophagus and into your stomach. The tube has an ultrasound device, a light and a tiny camera.

Ultrasound uses sound waves to create pictures of internal parts of the body. EUS allows your doctor to see your pancreas and other organs.

Our gastrointestinal team members are well trained and experienced in endoscopic ultrasound to ensure you have a comfortable experience.

Why it is Done

You're probably familiar with the kind of ultrasound that a pregnant woman has to let the doctor see the baby inside. In that kind of ultrasound, a wand is passed on the outside of the body to use sound waves to create images of what's inside.

Some parts of the body are harder to see with ultrasound from the outside. Doctors can use ultrasound devices that go inside the body.

Your doctor might recommend EUS if you have abdominal pain or other symptoms that can't be explained. Your doctor can get a closer look inside you to check for problems including inflammation, scarring, cysts, and benign (noncancerous) and malignant (cancerous) tumors.

Your doctor might want to get a sample of your cells (biopsy) or fluids to check for diseases. These samples can be collected during the EUS.

If you have pancreatic cancer, your doctor might use EUS to determine the stage of your cancer.

What to Expect

You may be asked to not eat before your procedure or to drink only clear liquids. You also might need to avoid certain medications before EUS. Your doctor will go over these instructions with you.

EUS is an outpatient procedure. You are sedated with medication given through a needle in your arm (intravenously or IV). The medication might make you sleepy. If you feel any discomfort, it should be minimal.

Your doctor inserts the endoscope (tube) into your mouth. Sometimes, it needs to be inserted through the rectum.

As the endoscope goes through your digestive system, your doctor looks at the images on different computer screens.

The procedure usually takes 45 to 90 minutes. You are monitored for an hour or two afterward. This waiting period is normal after sedation medication. Then you can go home.

You can't drive yourself home after being sedated. Be sure to bring someone along or arrange for a ride home.

You might need to rest the remainder of the day because of the sedative. Usually, you can return to most normal activities. You might notice a sore throat or abdominal bloating for a day or two.

What the Risks Are

Our doctors have performed thousands of EUS procedures and take every measure to make sure you are safe and comfortable.

Complications of EUS are not common. Some people have a reaction to sedation medication or bleeding. Rarely, you can get a tear in the lining of your stomach or duodenum (part of your small intestine) that needs surgical repair.

Find an Aurora Health Care GI Specialist