After ERCP

What does recovery from ERCP involve?
After ERCP, patients are moved to a recovery room where they wait for about an hour for the sedatives to wear off. Patients may not remember conversations with health care staff, as the sedatives reduce memory of events during and after the procedure. During this time, patients may feel bloated or nauseous. Patients may also have a sore throat, which can last a day or two. Patients can go home after the sedatives wear off. Patients will likely feel tired and should plan to rest for the remainder of the day.

What are the risks associated with ERCP?
Significant risks associated with ERCP include

  • Infection
  • Pancreatitis
  • Allergic reaction to sedatives
  • Excessive bleeding, called hemorrhage
  • Puncture of the G.I. tract or ducts
  • Tissue damage from radiation exposure
  • Death, in rare circumstances

When ERCP is performed by an experienced doctor, complications occur in about 6 to 10 percent of patients and these often require hospitalization. Patients who experience any of the following symptoms after ERCP should contact Dr. Jones immediately:

  • Swallowing difficulties
  • Throat, chest, or abdominal pain that worsens
  • Vomiting
  • Bloody or dark stool
  • Fever