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EndoscopyWhat is an Endoscopy?

Endoscopy is a procedure that allows physicians to visually examine the inside lining of the upper and lower gastrointestinal tracts as well as the bronchial tree in the lungs. An endoscope is an instrument which uses fiber optic light for illumination and a microchip camera to visualize the interior lumens of the organs being examined. The portion of the endoscope inserted into the body may be rigid or flexible, depending upon the procedure being performed.

During endoscopy your physician can look for ulcers, polyps, tumors, infection, or bleeding. Through the same endoscope tissue samples can be collected by biopsy, polyps can be removed, and bleeding can be treated. Endoscopy can reveal problems that are not identified on x-ray imaging tests. Endoscopy may sometimes eliminate the need for exploratory surgery.


Colonoscopy is an outpatient procedure in which the large bowel (colon and rectum) is examined. Your doctor may perform the procedure to diagnose and treat, when possible, certain diseases of the lower gastrointestinal (GI) tract, which includes the rectum and colon.

Upper endoscopy, also called esophagogastroduodenoscopy, or EGD, uses a thin scope with a light and camera at its tip to look inside of the upper digestive tract – the esophagus, stomach, and first part of the small intestine, called the duodenum.

Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatogram (ERCP) is a test that combines the use of a flexible, lighted scope (endoscope) with X-ray pictures to examine the tubes that drain the liver, gallbladder and pancreas.

Endoscopic Ultrasound is a procedure that allows a doctor to obtain images and information about the digestive tract and the surrounding tissue and organs, including the lungs. Ultrasound testing uses sound waves to make a picture of internal organs. By inserting the endoscope and camera into the upper and lower digestive tract, the doctor is able to obtain high-quality ultrasound images of organs. Because the EUS can get close to the organ(s) being examined, the images obtained with EUS are often more accurate and detailed than images provided by traditional ultrasound which must travel from the outside of the body.


Before You Arrive:

  • Do not eat or drink anything for 6 to 8 hours before the test. An empty stomach helps your doctor see your stomach clearly during the test.
  • Arrange for someone to transport you, since you will receive sedation and be unable to drive until the next day.
  • Check with your physician about taking your vitamins, diabetic medications, insulin, Coumadin, or aspirin products.
  • Depending on the type of test you are receiving you may expect to be here for 2-3 hours.
  • Remove all pierced body jewelry and wear comfortable clothes.
  • For your convenience, please call 455.5228 or 455.5107 to pre-register for your Endoscopic procedure.

Once You Are Here:

  • A small IV will be inserted to provide a site to inject medications for most procedures.
  • Your vital signs will be monitored during and after your procedure.
  • The physician will visit with you before and after your exam.
  • The results of your test will be discussed with you after your procedure.
  • You will receive specific written instructions before you are discharged.
  • If biopsies are taken or polyps are removed, it will take 7-10 days to get those results. You will be contacted by the physician’s office with those results.
  • You may receive special instruction from the physician’s office performing your procedure for your specific test.
  • Your Primary Care or referring Physician will receive a final interpretation of your procedure.

Find Us:

Benefis Endoscopy Services
1101 26th Street South
Parking Lot 1, Entrance 1
Great Falls, Montana 59405

Hours of Operation:
Monday – Friday 7:30 a.m.-5 p.m.

Phone (406) 731-8384