Who doesn’t love food? We have a knack for eating something different yet delicious any given time. This is the reason why food holds such an important place in our life. There are different varieties of food that we like to enjoy. If we look in relation to our body, then the constant eating is only possible when we can digest the previous eaten food. This work is done by our gastrointestinal tract. This is an organ system related to our body which helps is digesting food so that we can get desired nutrients and expel out the waste. This is an ongoing process and this cycle is repeated daily. Intestines play an important part in this process. Just like any other glands or organs in our body, gastrointestinal tract can suffer problems. Bronchoscopic argon plasma coagulation is one of the effective methods to correct complications of our gastrointestinal tract.

What is Bronchoscopic Argon plasma coagulation?

Argon plasma coagulation is a procedure to control and limit bleeding that occurs due to abrasions in our gastrointestinal tract. This procedure requires use of an endoscopy. It can also be considered as a step before surgery for people who are suffering from tumors. As surgery is a complex procedure, this process is preferred. This process is a non contact thermal method and is an alternative to contact thermal methods such as heater probe and bipolar cautery.

What is the procedure?

The first thing to note is this is not a laser process as this is the biggest misconception of Bronchoscopic argon plasma coagulation. The probe releases argon gas aka argon plasma and then high-voltage electric current is also passed along the probe. When this electric current comes in contact with argon gas, it becomes ionized which generates monopolar electric current which sticks itself to the lesion that is the nearest. The depth of penetration of thermal energy that is delivered is approximately 2 to 3 mm. This results in coagulation of the bleeding lesion.

Use of argon plasma coagulation

It is used to treat Angiodysplasia which is a small vascular malformation of the gut. It is also used in case of iron deficiency anemia known as gastric antral vascular ectasia. Colonic polyps or an abnormal growth of tissues from a mucous membrane is treated with this procedure. If anyone is suffering from esophageal cancer, then Bronchoscopic argon plasma coagulation comes in very handy.

Advantages of Bronchoscopic argon plasma coagulation

This procedure does not require any physical contact and therefore is a safe procedure. If the gastrointestinal tract has thin walls, then this procedure is also used. The treatment is speedy and is easy to give. When compared to laser surgery, the price is also less.

Complications involved in the procedure

Due to portal hypertension, there is twisting of blood vessels including esophageal, gastric and intestinal varices. Bleeding from varices is the most common reason for death in cirrhosis.

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