Endoscopy allows visualization of internal organs and structures through the use of a small, flexible tube with a camera at its end. There are many types of endoscopes and each is named for the body system that is being examined plus the suffix - oscopy. For example visualization of the ears -oto plus oscopy or otoscopy. At Christensen Animal Hospital in Wilmette, IL some of the most common uses of endoscopes are to evaluate the stomach, small and large intestines, ears, bladder and lower urinary tract, and joint spaces (see arthroscopy section), among others.
Perhaps, the most common use of endoscopes at our hospital is to examine and biopsy the gastrointestinal tract for definitive diagnosis of such diseases as inflammatory bowel disease and various cancers. Often, we are able to retrieve foreign material from the GI tract that otherwise would not pass via the use of an endoscope and specialized instruments.
Access to the various parts of gastrointestinal tract through endoscopy offers a myriad of benefits over traditional surgical approaches. Because an endoscope is passed through the stomach, there are no incisions for your pet. This means less recovery time and expense in the hospital, less nursing care at home during the postoperative period for you and your pet, and less medical rechecks and associated costs as well. Our patients are most often back to themselves the day following endoscopy, and sometimes even the same day as the surgery. By comparison traditional surgical approaches commonly involve large incisions to facilitate the same procedures, and it is not uncommon for recovery time to take as long as two weeks. Endoscopic patients need little to no analgesia post operatively because there is no pain!
It is extremely frustrating and emotionally taxing when your favorite canine friend decides to eat your best pair of tennis shoes. However, the physical patient stress and emotional owner stress is drastically reduced when that foreign material can be removed in a safe and effective manner with minimal invasion to the patient, and she is resting comfortably at home the following day.
Other common uses of scopes at our hospital include evaluation of the ears to remove polyps, and other benign and malignant tumors, and to alleviate chronic middle ear infections. Our skilled surgical team at Christensen Animal Hospital in Wilmette often employs cystoscopy for the removal of bladder stones and the biopsy and/or resection of bladder tumors. Frequently we pass a very small, flexible, diode laser through the endoscope to remove and destroy various tumors with exceptional results in these patients. For more information call us today at 847-251-2600.