Endoscopy Unit

In 2013 GUTS funded a £93,000 screening room at the Royal Surrey County Hospital, increasing the number of screens available to the hospital to four. The facilities provide endoscopic examinations of patients referred to the unit through the National Bowel Cancer screening programme, by the GUTS family colon cancer screening programme, or through the GP service. The unit is one of the best equipped in the UK and receives referrals from across the south of England. In addition to screening patients, the GUTS screening room can be used as a unique teaching aid, beaming live feed 3-D imagery to the University of Surrey’s post-graduate medical school.
The funding for the project was raised over 15 months and included contributions of £20,000 from Frimley-based SC Johnson and £14,000 from Guildford County Club.

What is endoscopy?

An endoscope is a long, thin, flexible tube that has a light source and a video camera at one end. Images of the inside of your body are relayed to a television screen.

Endoscopes can be inserted into the body through a natural opening, such as the mouth and down the throat, or through the anus (via the bottom), which is the normal procedure for bowel cancer screening and is referred to as colonoscopy or bowel scope. It is usually carried out while a person is conscious – it’s not painful but can be uncomfortable, so a local anaesthetic or sedative (medication that has a calming effect) may be given to help you relax. If you take part in the bowel cancer screening programme and blood is detected in your sample, it is likely that you will be referred for a colonoscopy. It doesn’t mean you have bowel cancer but the colonoscopy will establish the cause of the blood so it’s important to attend. Before your appointment you will be advised on what you should eat and drink beforehand in preparation for the procedure.

It will usually be performed on an outpatient basis, which means you will not have to stay in hospital overnight.

More about the procedure

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