A GI or gastrointestinal series is an X-ray exam of the esophagus, stomach, and sometimes the small intestine that requires you to drink a liquid called barium.
Preparing for your Exam-Before, During, After
- Do not eat or drink anything from midnight the night before your exam to your scheduled appointment time. Essential medication may be taken with a sip of water. If you are diabetic, please consult with your doctor before taking any medication on the morning of your exam.
- You will be asked to swallow a mildly flavored barium drink. This mixture fills the stomach and intestines, allowing them to be visible on the X-ray screen. The radiologist will watch the images of your intestine on a special X-ray television screen. At times, the radiologist will ask you to change your position or hold your breath so that images may be taken.
- Depending on the part of the body being examined, an exam can range in time from one to three hours
- After the exam, you may eat and drink as normal.
- Your primary care physician will discuss the results with you.