Upper GI Series

An UGI is an exam that evaluates your upper digestive tract (the area from your mouth to the beginning of the small intestine). You may be asked to swallow some air crystals “fizzies” and then drink a few cups of barium (a liquid that enhances X-ray images). While you are drinking, the doctor will be examining your esophagus and stomach with an X-ray camera. The doctor will ask you to move in several different positions to get detailed images of your GI tract. Remain as relaxed as you can and focus on the doctor’s instructions. The exam usually takes about 30 to 45 minutes.

How Should I Prepare for the Procedure?

  • Stop eating and drinking the night before your test
  • Stop taking any medications (unless your physician says otherwise)

What Are Some Common Reasons for the Procedure?

  • Esophageal reflux
  • Ulcers
  • Tumors
  • Esophageal spasm

For Your Safety, Be Sure to Inform the Technologists Of:

  • Allergies you may have
  • When you last ate or drank
  • Pregnancy or possible pregnancy
  • Any previous surgery
  • Medications you’re currently taking

After Your Test

You are allowed to resume your normal diet and activities right away. Make sure you drink more water than usual to help relieve any constipation you may have after the test. Your stool may appear white or light for a day or two. Your physician should let you know the results.