Endoscopic Retrograde Cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) is used to diagnose and treat a range of conditions that can affect your digestive system.
The word endoscopic refers to the use of an endoscope, which is the long, thin, tube with a minute video camera that your physician uses to explore inside your digestive system.Retrograde refers to the fact that a dye is injected to help your bile and pancreatic duct show up better on an X-Ray.Finally, cholangiopancreatography means the process of taking the X-Rays.
WHY WOULD YOU NEED AN ERCP?If you have pain in your abdomen, jaundice, or other abnormalities that show up in blood tests, your doctor may recommend that you have an ERCP.
The procedure is used to diagnose and treat blockages of the bile or pancreatic duct that may be caused by:
- Gallstones blocking the bile duct.
- Tumours pressing against the pancreatic or bile ducts, or encircling them and squeezing them shut.
- Scarring or narrowing of the duct as a result of another condition.
- Sphincter of Oddi dyskinesia.