An ultrasound uses sound waves and a computer to make images of the inside of your body. An EUS is done from inside your stomach using a tool called an endoscope. This test can show how far cancer has spread into your stomach wall and nearby tissues and lymph nodes. It gives very specific information about the stage of your stomach cancer. This information helps your healthcare providers plan your treatment.
An endoscope is a long, thin, flexible tube with a light and a tiny camera. It also has a special ultrasound tool at the tip. Before the test, you'll be given medicine to make you sleepy. A numbing medicine will be sprayed into your throat to help prevent gagging. Then the endoscope is put into your mouth or nose. It’s gently guided down into your throat, through your esophagus, and into your stomach. The ultrasound tip sends images to a computer.
An EUS can show how far the tumor has grown in or through your stomach wall. It can also be used to look at lymph nodes around your stomach. This is to see if cancer cells might have spread to them. Your healthcare provider may pass a thin needle through the endoscope, through your stomach wall, and into nearby lymph nodes. Then the needle can be used to take tiny pieces of tissue (called samples) from the lymph nodes. This is called a biopsy. The tissue samples are sent to a lab. A specialist (pathologist) checks them for cancer.