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Upper Gastrointestinal Series (UGI) is a fluoroscopic examination of the pharynx, esophagus, stomach and first part of the small intestine (also known as the duodenum) that uses oral contrast material called barium.

Who performs the procedure?

The procedure is performed by a Radiologist with the assistance of a Technologist.

Why is this procedure performed?

This procedure may be performed for several reasons. It may be done to evaluate for:

  • Ulcers
  • Tumors
  • Inflammation of the esophagus
  • Hiatal hernia
  • Blockages
  • Abnormalities of the muscular wall of the gastrointestinal tissues
  • Scarring

Where is the procedure performed?

University Imaging Center
University of Maryland Professional Building, Suite 110
419 West Redwood Street
Baltimore, Maryland 21201

University of Maryland Medical Center
Department of Diagnostic Radiology, 2nd Floor
22 South Greene Street
Baltimore, Maryland 21201

Is there any prep for this procedure?

Patients may not consume anything by mouth after 12:00 a.m. (midnight) before their scheduled exam.

What can I expect before the procedure?

Once you arrive at the Imaging Center, you will have to register at the front desk. Please have your insurance information ready at this time. After registration, you will be taken to the Fluoroscopy Department where you will be instructed to remove all clothing and jewelry in the area to be examined.

What can I expect during the procedure?

During this exam, you will be on the fluoroscopy table. The table will either be standing up vertically or lying down during this procedure. You will be instructed to drink barium and you may be given some gas crystals to ingest to distend your esophagus. This will give the Radiologist a better look at your esophagus and stomach. You will be asked to hold your breath and move in different positions during this exam.

What can I expect after the procedure?

After the procedure, you may experience your stool turning a grayish white from the barium. This is normal. Drink a lot of liquids to flush this barium out of your colon because it may cause constipation.

Are there any risks to this procedure?

There is a very low risk that one may have from the exposure to radiation

Are there any alternatives to this procedure?

No alternatives are available for this procedure.

How do I schedule an appointment?

Please contact the Radiology Access Center at 410-328-3225 to schedule an appointment.