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The endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography, or ERCP, uses an endoscope, along with X-rays and injected dyes, to examine the bile ducts. These are the tubes that connect to the liver, gallbladder and pancreas, and cannot always be examined by other imaging systems. The ERCP procedure may be used in place of an MRI, abdominal ultrasound or CT scan.

What can an ERCP help with?

Advanced G.I. LLC may advise a patient to get an ERCP, if we need to examine sources of jaundice or abdominal pain, as well as take samples for a biopsy. An ERCP can also help drain blocked tubes, clear blocked areas, remove gallstones or widen a passage.

What happens during an ERCP exam?

A sedative or relaxing medication will be given to the patient, and they will be asked to lie on the examination table. A numbing spray will be administered to the mouth, and a mouthguard will be placed over the teeth. An endoscope will be inserted into the mouth, through the esophagus and into the bile ducts. A dye inserted into the area helps our gastroenterologists take X-rays and examine the tissue for tumors, gallstones or other complications.

After the procedure, Dr. Michael Flicker, Dr. Carl Atallah and Dr. Daniel Berger recommend that you plan a ride home and refrain from driving or lifting heavy objects. Patients may experience bloating, gas, a sore throat or some pain following their ERCP. If you experience severe pain, fever, nausea, bleeding from the rectum or black stool, call 773-598-5588 immediately.

If you would like to schedule an ERCP appointment at our practice, get in touch with our office or call us today!