The ability to see inside the body has been highly valued for as long as medicine has been practiced. In the past, this was challenging and often dangerous because the technology simply wasn’t available to do so safely. Over time, though, scientists have developed new methods for visualizing internal organs and even performing medical procedures. One crucially important development that has been helpful for gastroenterology but also for treating obesity is the endoscope. Endoscopy procedures offer an impressive combination of precision, minimally invasive techniques, and diagnostic capabilities.
The roots of endoscopy can be traced back to ancient civilizations, where rudimentary tools like tubes and candles were used for internal examinations. After going through countless innovations, the current technology involves the use of a slender, flexible tube that is equipped with a camera and specialized tools for visualizing the interior of various organs and structures in the body. This minimally invasive approach has revolutionized medicine by providing real-time, high-definition images of the body’s internal workings; this has allowed for more precise diagnoses and has made possible therapeutic interventions without the need for traditional open surgery.
Endoscopy is widely utilized across medical specialties, from gastroenterology for examining the digestive tract to pulmonology for assessing the respiratory system, and it continues to play a pivotal role in improving patient outcomes and quality of care. In more recent years, the use of endoscopy has expanded even further and is now used for endobariatric weight loss procedures like at True You Weight Loss. A procedure like endoscopic sleeve gastroplasty (ESG) allows the doctor to achieve similar results as earlier forms of bariatric surgery but without the need for the kinds of incisions that are needed for laparoscopy.
Because endoscopy is a minimally invasive outpatient procedure, it is highly valued for being widely available to many different kinds of patients. This also means that it can be used in various ways for various purposes. Although there are many different types of endoscopy, these are the most common types:
Endoscopy is generally considered safe, but like any medical procedure it carries some potential risks and side effects. It’s important to note that the likelihood and severity of these side effects can vary depending on the type of endoscopy as well as individual factors. Common potential side effects and risks of endoscopy may include:
It’s important to note that an evaluation of these and other risks is standard when an endoscopy is considered. Every patient will have a chance to discuss the potential side effects with their health care provider before the procedure begins. In most cases, even minor side effects usually resolve on their own within a few days of the procedure. Severe abdominal pain, fever, or bleeding is highly unusual and should be treated as an emergency.
Endoscopy has truly changed many areas of medicine, but the area that only a small percentage of people have experienced is endoscopic weight loss procedures. As noted earlier, ESG is a state-of-the-art example of endoscopy that involves resizing the stomach from the inside to make it smaller and thus able to hold less food. This has a profound impact on both hunger and satiety, and for many people is the key to long-term, sustained weight loss. But rather than requiring a lengthy recovery like bariatric surgery, the patient is back to normal activities within a couple days.
If you’re like most other Americans, you’ve probably tried the traditional weight loss methods of diet and exercise. And while they are important aspects of losing weight, the evidence is clear that diet and exercise alone are not very effective. At True You Weight Loss, we are dedicated to offering the alternative: minimally invasive endoscopic procedures that are designed to help you lose weight consistently. If you’d like to learn more about ESG or our other offerings, please contact us today to request a consultation. Freedom is waiting!