About the Unit

The Royal Infirmary Endoscopy Unit, is a busy clinical unit that has strong links to other departments within NHS  Lothian and University of Edinburgh. The main links include Department of Medical Physics, Acute Medicine, Department of Surgery, Department of Radiology,  Medical Day Case Unit, Scottish Liver Transplant Unit and other GI & Endoscopy Units within NHS Lothian.
 Endoscopy Unit Reception Main Entrance

Every year over 9,000 procedures are performed by Specialist Medical & Surgical Staff in 4 Endoscopy Suites and the Department of Radiology. A 24 / 7 emergency endoscopy service is provided.

Departments within the Lothian University Hospitals Division are Tertiary referral centres and this reflects on the complexity of procedures performed within the Endoscopy Unit. The Unit has active scientific and clinical research interests. It enjoys the combined resources of the University and that of the prestigious teaching hospitals situated in Edinburgh. Particular areas of expertise include Endoscopic Ultrasound (staging and management of gastro-oesophageal and Hepatobiliary cancer), the management of upper gastrointestinal  bleeding, endoscopic investigation and treatment of small bowel disorders, and oesophageal motility.


A variety of diagnostic and therapeutic endoscopic procedures are offered by the Unit as follows:


  • Upper Gastrointestinal endoscopy
  • Transnasal Endoscopy
  • High Definition Endoscopy, Chromoendoscopy, NBI and FICE
  • Colonoscopy (including Double Balloon Colonoscopy, & colonoscopy using scope positional tracking systems)
  • Flexible sigmoidoscopy
  • Deep Enteroscopy (DBE)
  • Endoscopic Ultrasonography (Diagnostic / Staging FNA)
  • Capsule Endoscopy Imaging (Upper, Small Bowel & Colonic)
  • Smart Pill Capsule for motility studies. (Research Only)


  • Banding of oesophageal varices
  • Variceal Sclerotherapy / Thrombin Injection
  • Oesophageal Dilatations
  • Oesophageal, Pyloric, Small Bowel stenting
  • Endoscopic mucosal resection
  • Radiofrequency ablation for Barrett's
  • Pneumatic dilatation for Achalasia
  • Botox injections for achalasia
  • Haemostasis of gastrointestinal bleeding using adrenaline, Thrombin, heater probe or BICAP.
  • Argon Plasma Coagulation
  • Placement of percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomies
  • Polypectomy of upper and lower GI tract.
  • Colonic dilatation
  • Endoscopic drainage of pancreatic pseudocysts
  • Placement of nasojejunal feeding tubes
  • Therapeutic ERCP (biliary stents, sphincterotomy / stone extraction)


  • Oesophageal manometry (including High Resolution)
  • Oesophageal pH Monitoring
  • Oesophageal Impedance Monitoring
  • C13 urea breath testing for HP
  • Glucose hydrogen breath test
  • Lactose hydrogen breath test

Last Reviewed: 30/01/2015