Describing Endoscopic Ultrasound (EUS) as a 'revolutionary third eye' for gastroenterologists, former AIIMS Gastroenterology Head Dr Rakesh Tandon today expressed hope that it will be mandatory by next 10 years.
Speaking in a symposium on the EUS, organised by Pushpawati Singhania Research Institute (PSRI) Dr Tandon said diagnosis is the most essential part of right treatment because if the diagnosis is accurate, the actual problem is prevented.
Abdominal ultrasound, CT scan and MRI of the abdomen and endoscopy helps greatly in identifying the location and often the nature of diseases in the abdomen, yet several diseases defy detection in early stages or leave certain finer aspects of the disease unclear, he said.
He added that with changing times and technology, EUS, a diagnostic tool is made available which is a combination of endoscopy and ultrasound to obtain images and information about the digestive tract and surrounding tissue and organs.
It is also used to study organs that are near the gastrointestinal tract including lungs, gall bladder and pancreas, he said.
Endoscopy refers to the procedure of inserting a long flexible tube via the mouth or the rectum to visualise the digestive tract whereas ultrasound uses high-frequency sound waves to produce images of the organs and structures inside the body such as ovaries, uterus, liver, gallbladder, pancreas and aorta, he informed.
Explaining about EUS he said, a small ultrasound transducer is installed on the tip of the endoscope as it allows the transducer to get close to the organs inside the body.
Because of the proximity of the EUS transducer to the organs of interest, the images obtained are frequently more accurate and more detailed than the ones obtained by traditional ultrasound or conventional method, Dr Tandon, who is now Medical Director with PSRI Hospital, added.
The EUS also can obtain information about the layers of the intestinal wall as well as adjacent areas such as lymph nodes and the blood vessels and the entire procedure usually takes 30 to 90 minutes and the patient usually can go home the same day of the procedure, he informed.
In a reference he said a recent case of a 22 year young boy was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer through a CT Scan report in a hospital. "When he came to us for a second opinion, we tested him through the EUS procedure and found out that he had TB of the pancreas instead."
Dr Vipulroy Rathod of Endoscopy Asia and a well known Gastroenterologist said, 'EUS is an improvised diagnostic tool that the conventional methods of imaging like CT Scan, MRI or MRCP and is the next big thing for diagnosing gastro related problems as this technology can help doctors take real time biopsy which also reduces the fear of spread of the cancer cells which is much prevalent in the conventional methods of taking biopsies or aspirations.
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