What is GI endoscopy?
Gastrointestinal (GI) endoscopy refers to the endoscopic examination of the digestive tract. This examination is performed using a flexible tube called an endoscope. The tip of the endoscope is equipped with a camera and light for accurate examination of the lining of the digestive tract. This allows diagnosis as well as treatment of GI diseases. It is generally considered a very safe and straightforward examination. For most people its benefits outweigh its harms.
OGD: Who Needs it?
Oesophagogastroscopy (OGD) refers to the endoscopic examination of the oesophagus, stomach and duodenum. It usually takes around 10 to 15 minutes.
An OGD may be advised for a number of reasons, including:
Anaemia or suspected gastrointestinal bleeding
Stomach ache, indigestion or unexplained abdominal pain
Difficulty in swallowing
Unintentional weight loss
Patients with suspected oesophagus or stomach cancer
Colonoscopy: Who Needs It?
Colonoscopy refers to the endoscopic examination of distal small bowel and the entire colon. It typically takes around 30-60 minutes.
For healthy individuals aged between 50-75, colonoscopy may be recommended as a screening test for colorectal cancer. If you have had polyps before, an interval colonoscopy can help look for and remove any new polyps. This can reduce your risk of colon cancer.
Colonoscopy may also be advised to explore possible causes of abdominal pain, rectal bleeding, chronic constipation, chronic diarrhoea and other intestinal problems.
Importance of Screening, Early Diagnosis and Early Treatment
Colorectal cancer is cancer that originates from the colon or the rectum. It is one of the commonest cancer among men and women in Hong Kong.
Many colorectal cancers can be prevented through regular screening. When precancerous polyps are found during colonoscopy, they can be removed before they develop into cancer. When early stages of colorectal cancer which usually present no symptoms are found during colonoscopy, they are highly treatable. The Hong Kong SAR Government’s Cancer Expert Working Group on Cancer Prevention and Screening (CEWG) recommends that colorectal cancer screening should start at age 50.
About Ambulatory Day Surgery
Over the past decades, the health care industry has witnessed a transformation from hospital based to ambulatory day surgeries worldwide. Ambulatory surgeries have demonstrated an exceptional ability to improve quality and service. By focusing on routine, lower-risk procedures, patients can benefit from the convenience of having surgeries performed safely outside the hospital setting.
The public sector in Hong Kong has adopted this concept for more than twenty years. The Private Healthcare Facilities Ordinance (Cap 633) in Hong Kong regulates private healthcare facilities from hospitals to clinics, and covers day procedure centres from 2018 onwards. AUMC was founded according to this local and worldwide trend, in strict accordance to the law in Hong Kong.
The scope of service starts with the endoscopy of the gastrointestinal tract. It would gradually be expanded to cover other procedures and specialties.