Transnasal Endoscopy Program

The Transnasal Endoscopy Program (TNE) at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles is the first and only program in Southern California that addresses the needs of children requiring upper endoscopy for evaluation of gastrointestinal (GI) tract problems.

Performing an upper GI endoscopy with biopsies for a child requires deep sedation or general anesthesia. Child also has to stay without food and water (NPO) for hours before the endoscopy and has to spend several hours in the hospital. Some children require multiple endoscopies to manage their condition causing additional exposure to anesthesia.

TNE technique allows the endoscopic evaluation to be done “Unsedated”- while the child is awake. This is an outpatient office based procedure where a numbing agent is used in the nose and throat and then a small endoscope is passed through the nose into the esophagus and stomach. Tiny tissue samples called biopsies can be obtained during this procedure. TNE does not require deep sedation or general anesthesia and dramatically cuts down the time required to stay NPO and overall time spent in the hospital. This procedure is especially useful in children who need more than one endoscopy; one such condition is Eosinophilic Esophagitis (commonly called EoE).

What to expect during your first visit

Families coming to the Transnasal Endoscopy Program at CHLA should plan on being at the hospital for 2 to 3 hours including the check in and clinic time. You will meet with pediatric gastroenterology specialist (Dr Vrinda Bhardwaj) who will discuss with you the problems and concerns your child is having and examine your child. The TNE procedure would be performed the same day. If follow up exam visits are needed, they can also be organized that same day.

TNE allows children and parents to return to their normal activities immediately after leaving the hospital.