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Disease - Conditions

Endoscopic Retrograde Cholangiopancreatography (ERCP)


ERCP is a procedure in which a dye is injected into the bile and pancreatic ducts using a flexible, fiber-optic endoscope. Then X-rays are taken to outline the bile ducts and pancreas. The bile ducts, gallbladder, and pancreas are involved in numerous disorders, such as:

  • Gallstones, which are trapped in the main bile duct.
  • Blockage of the bile duct.
  • Jaundice, which turns the skin yellow and the urine dark.
  • Undiagnosed upper abdominal pain.
  • Cancer of the bile ducts or pancreas.
  • Pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas)

ERCP helps in diagnosing and often in treating these conditions.

Click to learn more about ERCP.

Procedure Instructions

Download Procedure Instructions

Preparation

  • You MUST  arrange a ride for the day of your exam. If you fail to arrange acceptable transportation, your procedure will need to be rescheduled.
  • If you have diabetes, ask your physician for diet and medication instructions. If you are or may be pregnant, please discuss the risks and benefits of this procedure with your doctor.
  • If you must cancel or reschedule your appointment, please call your doctor’s office as soon as possible.

1 Week Before Procedure

If you take aspirin or NSAIDS such as Advil, Motrin, Celebrex or Ibuprofen, you may continue to take them as usual unless otherwise instructed by your physician. You should discuss this with your physician in advance of the procedure. Ask your doctor for specific instructions if you take a blood thinner like Plavix, Pradaxa, Clopidogrel, Coumadin, Warfarin, Effient, Prasugrel or Lovenox.

1 Day Before Procedure

Stop eating all solid foods no later than midnight. Clear liquids are acceptable to drink. Do not consume any red or purpleliquids or alcohol.

Clear Liquid:

  • Gatorade, Pedialyte or Powerade
  • Clear broth or bouillon
  • Coffee or tea (no milk or non-dairy creamer)
  • Carbonated and non-carbonated soft drinks
  • Kool-Aid or other fruit-flavored drinks
  • Strained fruit juices (no pulp)
  • Jell-O, popsicles, hard candy

Not Clear Liquid:

  • No red or purple items of any kind
  • No alcohol
  • No milk or non dairy creamers
  • No noodles or vegetables in soup
  • No juice with pulp
  • No liquid you cannot see through

Day of Procedure

  • Stop drinking clear liquids 6 hours prior to your exam.
  • You may take all of your usual morning medications with 4 oz of water up to 3 hours prior to your procedure.
  • Bring a list of all of your current medications, including any over-the-counter medications, with you.