Thoracic Surgery


The Endoscopy Unit is located in Zone B Level 2, Room B2-220.

What is it?

Upper endoscopy is a procedure that passes a soft flexible, fiberoptic tube through your mouth into your throat, and down into your esophagus (swallowing tube). It is used to examine your esophagus, stomach and duodenum (upper small bowel).

Esophageal dilatation is a procedure that passes several long tubes through your mouth into your esophagus. This will stretch the esophagus to make your swallowing easier.



Upper endoscopy is used to examine the inside of the esophagus, stomach and duodenum. It helps your doctor determine the cause of some of your symptoms (such as food sticking, heartburn, stomach pain, vomiting, or bleeding).


The procedure takes about ½ hour and is done in the Endoscopy Unit at Victoria Hospital of London Health Sciences Centre. You will need to register at the Endoscopy Unit which is located in Zone B, Level 2 (Room B2-220) at least 45 minutes before your scheduled procedure. Plan on spending approximately 2 hours in hospital.


The procedure is a day surgery procedure: you will come in and go home on the same day. You will be given a local anesthetic to your throat to prevent gagging and light sedation. A flexible endoscope (telescope) will be passed through your mouth into your throat, and down into your esophagus, stomach and duodenum. Air is used to help distend the esophagus and stomach to allow a good examination. Biopsies (samples) may be taken. If needed, one or more dilators may be passed through your mouth to stretch the esophagus.


The procedure is uncomfortable and may cause gagging and bloating. The bloating is temporary and often relieved by burping. Local anesthetics and sedation will be given as needed. If biopsies are taken, bleeding may occur. This is usually temporary and should stop in a few hours. Dilation may be more painful. There is always a risk of tearing the esophagus. If this happens, you may need emergency surgery.

Before Your Endoscopy

DO NOT EAT OR DRINK ANYTHING, including water, after midnight the night before the procedure unless instructed otherwise by your surgeon. Advise your surgeon if you are taking any blood thinners. Leave jewellery and other valuables at home.

Inform your surgeon immediately if you are unable to keep your appointment.

After Your Endoscopy

After the procedure you will return to the Endoscopy Unit until you are ready to leave the hospital. Your surgeon will come and speak to you following your procedure.

Family and Friends

Family and friends may wait in the Endoscopy waiting room B2-220 where your surgeon will come to speak with them following the procedure.


There are no specific limitations. Your body is your best guide as to what you can do or feel like doing.


You must go home with either a friend or relative by private vehicle or by taxi, NOT by public transportation.

Before you leave the hospital, your nurse may schedule a return appointment with your surgeon to discuss the results of the procedure. If required, this will be in approximately 14 days following the endoscopy.

Following your endoscopy, call your surgeon if:

  1. You have any excess:
    • bleeding
    • swelling of the face or neck
    • pain
    • shortness of breath.
  1. You have a temperature of 38.50°C (101.5°F)