California children's hospital 1 of 2 facilities offering sedation-free endoscopy

Loma Linda University Children's Hospital has become one of two hospitals in Southern California to implement transnasal endoscopy without sedation in children. 

Upper GI endoscopies with biopsies usually require deep sedation or general anesthesia, from which it takes children several hours to recover, necessitating time away from school. Some children need several procedures to manage gastroenterological issues. However, transnasal endoscopies can be performed while children remain awake, causing less disruptions, according to a Jan. 9 news release from the health system. 

The sedation-free alternative is being piloted by GI specialist Khyati Mehta, MD, with the help of ear, nose and throat physician Tsungju O-Lee, MD. 

Dr. O-Lee uses a numbing agent in the nose and throat while Dr. Mehta navigates the endoscopy scope to obtain biopsies, according to the release. 

Trannell Martin, the parent of a 9-year-old with eosinophilic esophagitis, said in the release that having the option for her son to undergo endoscopies without sedation is "life-changing." 

Transnasasl endoscopy has allowed her son's physicians to obtain the biopsies they need and Ms. Martin is able to support her son throughout the procedure. 

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