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Types of Endoscopes and their Uses

An endoscope is defined as "an illuminated usually fiber-optic flexible or rigid tubular instrument for visualizing the interior of a hollow organ or part (such as the bladder or esophagus) for diagnostic or therapeutic purposes...". I couldn't have said it better myself, but we'll try to break down exactly what that means when it comes to the different types of endoscope and their use in a medical environment. Let's talk about each of the eight most common types of endoscopes and their uses.

Bronchoscope Uses
A Bronchoscope is a very common scope used to look into the lungs and airways. The tube is inserted into the nose or mouth, continuing down the throat and into the lungs. A rigid bronchoscopy is typically done under anesthesia in a hospital. Flexible bronchoscopy is more common and usually does not require general anesthesia.

Colonoscope Uses
The colonoscope is perhaps the most well known of the medical endoscopes, and as the name suggests, it is inserted into the anus in order to examine the colon. The colonoscope is typically used by a gastroenterologist to find abnormalities or disease in the colon and large intestines.

Cystoscope Uses
The cystoscope is used to inspect the inside of a bladder. The scope is inserted through the urethra. Cystoscopy is typically performed to investigate pelvic pain, frequent infections or blood in the urine and can help find tumors and cancers, among other problems.

Duodenoscope Uses
This scope is used in order to see the duodenum, which is at the top of the small intestine, immediately following the stomach. The scope can help diagnose and treat diseases such as pancreatic cancer or gallstones.

Gastroscope Uses
Gastroscopes are used to examine the inside of the stomach, and are one of the most commonly used endscopes available. They're used to inspect the food pipe, stomach and part of the duodenum. Common reasons for use include diagnosis of persistent abdominal pain and difficulty swallowing, or if stomach ulcers or certain reflux diseases may be suspected.

“Endoscope.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Feb. 2020.

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