Tests & Procedures
In order to accurately predict, detect, diagnose, and treat conditions of the GI system doctors use a variety of procedures and tests. Hers is an overview and explanation of common tests and procedures used by doctors that manage conditions of the GI tract. The following is a list of common procedures used by gastroenterologists to both diagnose and treat conditions of the GI tract.
Diagnostic Tests are used to accurately diagnose disease, determine prognosis, and monitor the response to and the safety of treatment. There are a number of diagnostic tests that fall into four categories: pathology, diagnostic imaging, blood tests, and tumor markers.
Pathology Tests: Pathology tests involve microscopic evaluation of abnormal cells obtained with a biopsy.
Diagnostic Imaging: Diagnostic imaging involves visualization of internal organs and their abnormalities using high-tech machines that create images. Examples of diagnostic imaging include x-rays, computed tomography (CT) scans, positron emission tomography (PET) scans, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and combined PET/CT scans.
Blood Tests: Blood tests measure substances in the blood that provide information about organ function.
Tumor Markers: Tumor marker tests detect substances in blood, urine, or other tissues that occur in higher than normal levels with certain cancers.