This includes both colonoscopy and gastroscopy. As diseases of the colon and stomach are quite common, colonoscopy and gastroscopy are useful tools for us to evaluate our patients. Today’s advancement in technology and surgeon’s skills has allowed us to use the endoscope to perform surgery, and thereby avoid major operations.
Endoscopy is a procedure where the doctor uses a special instrument called the endoscope to examine the insides of the body. Endoscopy was originally used for hollow organs such as our intestines (including the oesophagus, stomach and colon), our urinary system, and our airways. As technology advances, special endoscopes have been created that allow doctors to perform endoscopy in areas where there are hollow spaces like joints (arthroscopy) and abdominal cavity (laparoscopy).
An endoscope is a medical device consisting of a long, thin, flexible (or rigid) tube. Within this tube, there is fibre-optics which allow light projection as well as video capture. These then allow the endoscope to illuminate the insides of our body and to capture a “live” video of the organ being examined. The images are projected on a screen. Most of today’s endoscope has high-definition (HD) recording, which gives the doctor an extremely clear image of the patient’s body.
Endoscope has diagnostic capability, that is, it helps the doctor diagnose diseases. The clear images provided by the endoscope allow the doctor to know what is wrong with the patient. If the doctor sees an abnormality, like a tumour, he can take small biopsies through the endoscope so as to know the nature of the tumour, if it is cancerous or not.
Endoscope also has therapeutic capability, that is, it allows the doctor to give treatment using the endoscope. This is because modern day endoscope also has tunnels within it, called working channels, that allows the doctor to pass special instruments like forceps, special scissors, laser fibres, etc. Doctors can inject drugs, remove foreign bodies, stop bleeding, and even cut out tumours with such instruments. When we remove small tumours called polyps, we can help to prevent cancer.
Endoscopy can only be performed by specially trained doctors called endoscopists. These doctors have to go through a rigorous training programme before they are given the license by the hospital’s authority to perform endoscopy.
Only General Surgeons and Gastroenterologists can perform gastroscopy and colonoscopy.
All of the doctors in Nexus Surgical Associates are trained and licensed endoscopists. Our staff surgeon, Dr Ho Choon Kiat also served as the Director of Endoscopy Centre of Tan Tock Seng Hospital as well as Mount Elizabeth Novena Hospital previously.
All of them are also accepted into the Medisave / MediShield accreditation scheme. This is a scheme by the Ministry of Health Singapore, which allows patients treated by approved doctors to claim from their Central Provident Fund for payment of the endoscopy. The Ministry only allows trained endoscopists to join this scheme.
We highlight the following endoscopy services
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