The condition is usually confirmed for by an endoscopy in which we’re able to see what the actual causes. Certain types of imaging tests such as an upper GI study where you drink contrast and they take x-rays of your stomach can also be used to look for an ulcer. Both of these modalities are effective. An endoscopy is a little bit more effective because if they do see anything, we can take biopsies, which is a sampling of the tissue to figure out the exact etiology to the ulceration and we can treat them if we see them. Endoscopy is an endoscopic type of surgery, a surgical intervention in which a portion of the stomach is cut or a portion of the small bowel is cut and it is done intra-abdominally which means that the patient is completely sedated and they do a full surgical procedure. That’s more of an invasive procedure. In terms of physical treatments, most of those treatments are done through an endoscope, which means we take a camera, it’s about the width of my finger. We go down through the mouth and into the stomach. And if we see an ulcer, we can use different modalities such as injections, hemoclipping which means the titanium clips that help close off the ulcers and allow them to heal, or burning of the ulceration and injecting medication to allow it to heal better.
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