Endoscopic Retrograde Cholangiopangreatography


My grandma is getting this tomorrow. I tried googling it and the answers I got were too complicated for a layman. I’m just a bit worried about everything, if there’s anything you can tell me to ease my mind about this please do tell me. Thank you.

In: Biology

These are also called ERCPs— your grandma is put comfortably to sleep with medicine through her IV and a scope (or a long tube with a camera on it) goes through her mouth, esophagus, stomach, and ends up in a certain area of the small intestine.

The gallbladder produces bile, which helps us digest food, but sometimes this bile turns into hard stones that can block the tiny tube between the gallbladder and the small intestine called the bile duct. The goal of the procedure is often to remove any gallbladder stones that may be blocking the bile duct. If the bile duct is blocked, you may have jaundice, severe pain, or other problems. There are also other reasons to do an ERCP, but this is the main one. It’s a minimally invasive way to work on the bile duct/gallbladder/pancreas area.

The nice thing about endoscopic procedures is how there are no big skin incisions like in other surgeries. People may wake up with a sore throat from the scope going down, or maybe not. Of course, like with any procedure, there are risks that your doctor will (or has already) explained to your grandma and/or the person signing the consent form for her medical care.