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Home > Medical Services > Digestive Health > Tests
Location:Mercy Medical Center701 10th Street SECedar Rapids, IA 52403
Park at the North end of Level 2 in the ramp at 8th Street & 8th Avenue.
Phone Numbers:(319) 398-6484
After 5 p.m. & On Weekends: (319) 533-2205
Hours: 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.Monday through Friday
The Mercy Digestive Health Center offers inpatient and outpatient procedures. Also known as Endoscopy, this department provides pre-, intra- and post-procedure nursing care for all patients having endoscopic procedures.
The most common procedures we offer are the colonoscopy and gastroscopy.
A colonoscopy is used in routine screenings of the colon for cancer or polyps, or to pinpoint the cause of abnormal symptoms such as anemia, bleeding lesions, abdominal pain, chronic diarrhea, constipation or changes in bowel habits. It can also detect ulcerative colitis, Crohn's disease, diverticulosis/diverticulitis and hemorrhoids.
A colonoscopy can both identify and correct a problem in the colon. It involves visual examination of the large intestine (colon), using a lighted, flexible video endoscope.
The American Cancer Society recommends anyone reaching age 50 – men and women – have a screening colonoscopy. If a family member has had colon cancer, the ACS recommends having this screening test done sooner.
Watch videos on the Hall-Perrine Cancer Center colon cancer page to learn more about it as well as what to expect during a colonoscopy.
A gastroscopy or EGD (esophagogastroduodenoscopy) is a visual exam of the upper intestinal tract using a lighted, flexible video endoscope. This procedure detects abnormalities in the esophagus, stomach and duodenum (part of the small bowel).
A gastroscopy is used to diagnose or treat ulcers in the esophagus, stomach and duodenum, tumors of the stomach or esophagus, swallowing problems, upper abdominal pain, intestinal bleeding, heartburn and gastritis.
Endoscopy also performs gastrostomy tube placement, esophageal dilation, foreign body removal, flexible sigmiodoscopy and the following procedures:
A diagnostic tool used to find the cause of chronic heartburn or indigestion. To detect causes, the pH levels in the patient's esophagus must be measured. Usually, this means placing a catheter down the patient's nose and into the esophagus, which can cause discomfort. However, Mercy Digestive Health Center uses the Bravo pH system, which is catheter-free. A pH capsule is attached to the esophagus, measuring pH levels for 24 to 48 hours. The information is transmitted to a pager-sized receiver worn on a belt; the data is then analyzed by the physician. Appropriate treatment – usually including diet changes – can then be prescribed.
This diagnostic procedure detects diseases of the three portions of the small intestine (duodenum, jejunum and ileum). The patient ingests a vitamin pill-sized video capsule, which travels through the body, relaying images to a data recorder worn by the patient for about eight hours. The physician then reviews the images to determine causes for recurrent symptoms (abdominal pain, bleeding, diarrhea or anemia).
ERCP stands for endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography. In this procedure, dye is injected into the bile and pancreatic ducts and X-rays are taken. This procedure helps detect and/or correct a problem with gallstones, blockages of the bile duct, pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas), cancer of the pancreas or bile ducts, jaundice, and undiagnosed upper-abdominal pain. If a gallstone is found, it is removed during this exam. Blockage of the bile duct can also be relieved.
This diagnostic procedure pinpoints any swallowing problems within the esophagus by evaluating the muscular coordination inside the esophagus.
A liver biopsy is an outpatient procedure in which a small sample of tissue is taken from the patient's liver and then studied by the physician under a microscope to help with diagnosis. This can help diagnose viral infections, reactions to drugs or alcohol, tumors, hereditary conditions, and problems of the immune system.