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What is endoscopic ultrasound (EUS)?

Endoscopic ultrasound allows medical professionals to image organs in real time and identify pathology.

Endoscopic ultrasound (EUS) or echo-endoscopy is a medical procedure to examine the lining and the walls of the upper and lower gastrointestinal tract. The upper tract is the esophagus, stomach and duodenum; the lower tract includes the colon and rectum. EUS is used also to study internal organs that lie next to the gastrointestinal tract, such as the gallbladder, bile duct, and pancreas.

In endoscopic ultrasound (EUS), an ultrasound probe attached to the tip of the scope allows doctors, when the scope is passed into the body, to look outside of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract, and a little bit deeper into the body. Endoscopic ultrasound can be used to collect important information about cancers of the esophagus, stomach, rectum and pancreas.

First, doctors can measure the size of the tumor. Second, they can determine if it's grown into any adjacent structures such as a blood vessel or another organ. This is critically important to determine in formulating a treatment plan for a people with cancer. This knowledge helps doctors determine the best treatment, surgery, radiation, chemotherapy or a combination of methods.

Not every gastroenterologist performs EUS, as it requires additional training.

An endoscopic ultrasound is an ultrasound machine on the end of a scope. It's used to look at body cavities near the digestive tract.

Endoscopic ultrasound (EUS) is one of the most useful imaging studies for diagnosing pancreatic cancer. An outpatient procedure, it provides detailed images of the pancreas and surrounding tissues including the liver, blood vessels, and lymph nodes. EUS relies on high frequency soundwaves to create a picture of the organs. When the soundwaves bounce off of the internal organs, they send echoes to a computer which creates a visual image.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.