Clin Endosc.  2019 Jan;52(1):47-52. 10.5946/ce.2018.093.

Endoscopy Timing in Patients with Acute Upper Gastrointestinal Bleeding

  • 1Hospital Professor Doutor Fernando Fonseca, Serviço de Gastrenterologia, Amadora, Portugal.
  • 2Centro de Estatística e Aplicações da Universidade de Lisboa (CEAUL), Lisbon, Portugal.


The role of very early (≤12 hours) endoscopy in nonvariceal upper gastrointestinal bleeding is controversial. We aimed to compare results of very early and early (12-24 hours) endoscopy in patients with upper gastrointestinal bleeding demonstrating low-risk versus high-risk features and nonvariceal versus variceal bleeding.
This retrospective study included patients with nonvariceal and variceal upper gastrointestinal bleeding. The primary outcome was a composite of inpatient death, rebleeding, or need for surgery or intensive care unit admission. Endoscopy timing was defined as very early and early. We performed the analysis in two subgroups: (1) high-risk vs. low-risk patients and (2) variceal vs. nonvariceal bleeding.
A total of 102 patients were included, of whom 59.8% underwent urgent endoscopy. Patients who underwent very early endoscopy received endoscopic therapy more frequently (p=0.001), but there was no improvement in other clinical outcomes. Furthermore, patients at low risk and with nonvariceal bleeding who underwent very early endoscopy had a higher risk of the composite outcome.
Very early endoscopy does not seem to be associated with improved clinical outcomes and may lead to poorer outcomes in specific populations with upper gastrointestinal bleeding. The actual benefit of very early endoscopy remains controversial and should be further clarified.


Endoscopy, gastrointestinal; Endoscopy, digestive system; Gastrointestinal hemorrhage; Hemostasis, endoscopic; Patient outcome assessment
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