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Gastrointestinal Endoscopy
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Technology now allows us to get video images of almost the entire gastrointestinal tract in the living human being. This has proved to be an essential tool in diagnosis, treatment and screening for a wide range of diseases that commonly affect people.
Very often an endoscopic examination or procedure can be potentially lifesaving. Invariably it will cast light on what is actually causing your problem. The gastrointestinal tract is divided into upper and lower segments. The upper GI includes the esophagus, stomach and duodenum. The lower segment are the colon and rectum. The middle segment is the small bowel which fortunately is seldom affected by serious disease.
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Gastroscopy addresses upper gastrointestinal (GI) problems. Common symptoms affecting this area are gastric pain, reflux, vomiting and passing black stools. Many people also have gas bloating, discomfort after meals and frequent burping. These problems are almost always sorted out with a gastroscopy. Frequently the endoscopist is also able to treat minor problems such as ulcers.
Many symptoms are attributed to a bacteria called H. Pylori which can be discovered during the scope and treated by medication. Bleeding from ulcers in the stomach or duodenum can be stopped through the scope using injections, lasers, heat probes, glue or clips. Bleeding from ulcers used to claim many lives in the past before doctors developed means to stop bleeding through the endoscope.
People with liver cirrhosis also bleed from swollen vessels in the esophagus called varices. These also can be controlled via endoscopy. Most importantly, stomach and oesophageal cancer can be picked up on gastroscopy and biopsied. Furthermore, early cancers can even be removed via endoscopy. Hence, Endoscopy is not only a low risk diagnostic procedure but allows for early detection of cancers. A potentially lifesaving test.
This examination allows the doctor to survey the colon and the rectum and even the last part of the small bowel. It is recommended that people after the age of 40 undergo colonoscopy because the frequency of colo-rectal cancer in Singapore is number one in men and number two in women according to the national cancer centre of Singapore. (NCCS) If you have a family history of colon cancer, surveillance should start even earlier.

These are some of the common symptoms where colonoscopy is required:

1. Passing blood in the stools

2. Constipation

3. Alternating constipation and diarrhea

4. Change in bowel habits.

5. Lower abdominal pain

6. Mucous in the stools

7. Frequent diarrhoea

8. Small calibre stools.

If you have had polyps picked up in the past or have first degree family with colon cancer, a colonoscopy is recommended.

Colon cancer starts as polyps which can be removed through the scope. This prevents cancer from developing. This practice has been scientifically proven to decrease the incidence and mortality from large bowel cancer.

Many other diseases can be picked up through colonoscopy including inflammatory bowel disease, microscopic colitis, diverticular disease, haemorrhoids etc.

The effectiveness, comfort and time taken to do colonoscopy is operator dependant. Usually takes about 20-30min. The procedure is very low risk and any complication is very low in experienced hands.

A potentially lifesaving procedure.


Medical Director And Director of Surgery ASG

I believe that every patient deserves an accurate and the best possible treatment available today.

Dr. Goh


President Scholar (1975), MBBS (NUS), FRCS (Edinburgh), FRCS (Glasgow), Higher Surgical Training (Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts General Hospital), Founding Governor IFSES (1993), Founder & President ELSA, Assoc. Prof NUH NUS till 2000, Prof. Monash University, Prof. Cologne University, Chief of Surgery Yosemite Hospital and Yosemite Clinic.

Dr. Goh started is MOH-accredited and experience in general, laparoscopic and bariatric surgery. Current medical director of Advance Surgical Group.

He has 40 years of experience and carried out 30,000+ successful procedures to this day. Dr. Goh believes in permanently reversing diseases if possible rather than life long control.​

Are you at risk?

Consider these risk factors associated with colon cancer.

Drinking & Smoking
Colorectal cancer can occur in young adults and teenagers, but the majority of colorectal cancers occur in people older than 40. For colon cancer, the average age at the time of diagnosis for men is 68 and for women is 72. For rectal cancer, it is age 63 for both men and women.
Above 40 years old
Colorectal cancer can occur in young adults and teenagers, but the majority of colorectal cancers occur in people older than 40. For colon cancer, the average age at the time of diagnosis for men is 68 and for women is 72. For rectal cancer, it is age 63 for both men and women.
Around 11% of colorectal cancer (CRC) cases have been attributed to overweight and obesity in in Europe alone, and higher in Asia. Epidemiological data suggest that obesity is associated with a 30-70% increased risk of colon cancer in men, whereas the association is less consistent in women.
Blood in Stool & Irregular Movements
Rectal bleeding usually comes from bleeding in the lower colon or rectum and is a common symptom of colorectal cancer. Bright red blood on the toilet paper after a bowel movement or red or pink water in the toilet bowl can be signs of rectal bleeding.
Fatigue & Unexplained Weight Loss
Sometimes colon cancer can cause fatigue due to internal blood loss from the disease. In many cases, the symptoms of colon cancer are connected. Other colon cancer symptoms, such as unintentional weight loss and a change in bowel habits, can increase the feeling of weakness.


Why do I need to check?

Endoscopy is one of best ways for us to find out what is wrong with your gastrointestinal tract.

Without an accurate diagnosis it is difficult to recommend the appropriate treatment. We may also discover some unexpected problems which are treatable. This avoids the need for unnecessary surgery.

What are the symptoms that would require endoscopic screening?

The usual symptoms include:

  • abdominal pain
  • upper and lower GI bleeding
  • abdominal discomfort
  • reflux symptoms
  • constipation
  • diarrhea
  • vomiting
  • change in bowel habits
  • gastric pain

The procedure is also conducted for patients who want to do cancer surveillance​

How long does the procedure take and is there sedation?

Normally, Gastroscopy takes 5 to 10 minutes.

Colonoscopy takes 15 minutes to half an hour for a full checkup.

Time may vary depending on possible biopsies that are extracted for analysis. Sedation will be given to you with your consent prior to the procedure to ensure comfort and peace of mind.

What Can I do to prepare for a procedure?

Instructions will be given by the doctor or nurse beforehand to prepare you for the procedure.

Please inform the consulting doctor of any medications, medical condition or drug allergies, or if you have had any exposure to an infectious disease in the past 2 weeks.

The consulting doctor will discuss with you your medical history, your family history and any prior surgical procedures.

Please do not eat or drink anything 8 hours before the procedure. For colonoscopy procedures, bowel preparation medication will be advised by the consulting doctor

Is this procedure supported by insurance?

This is subject to individual insurance policy and terms. Endoscopic screening is usually covered by insurance, Medisave & Medishield.

What is the process in ASG for this procedure?

1. Book a consultation with ASG clinic for the doctor to examine you

2. If endoscopic screening is necessary, necessary preparations and instructions will be given before the procedure

3. After the procedure, a report will be furnished detailing the results. The next step is a follow up consult to determine the next course of action

Going for Consult. What to Bring?

  • Please bring your Identity card/ Passport or FIN card
  • Medical benefits card or letter of guarantee from insurance company/ employer (for patients with credit arrangements with the clinic)
  • List of medications you are presently taking, including the recommended prescribed doses