Endoscopy is the insertion of a long, thin tube directly into the body to observe an internal organ or tissue in detail. It can also be used to carry out other tasks including imaging and minor surgery.
Endoscopes are minimally invasive and can be inserted into the openings of the body such as the mouth or anus.
Endoscopy is useful for investigating many systems within the human body; these areas include:
Gastrointestinal tract : esophagus, stomach, and duodenum (esophagogastroduodenoscopy), small intestine (enteroscopy), large intestine/colon (colonoscopy, sigmoidoscopy), bile duct, rectum (rectoscopy), and anus (anoscopy).
Respiratory tract : Nose (rhinoscopy), lower respiratory tract (bronchoscopy).
Ear : Otoscopy
Urinary tract : Cystoscopy
Through a small incision : Abdominal or pelvic cavity (laparoscopy), interior of a joint (arthroscopy), organs of the chest (thoracoscopy and mediastinoscopy).