After Endoscopic Retrograde Cholangiopancreatography (ERCP)

You had a procedure known as an endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP). Your doctor performed the ERCP to look at your common bile duct and to locate and treat blockages in the duct. This procedure is used to diagnose diseases of the pancreas, bile ducts, and pancreatic duct, liver, and gallbladder. Here’s what you need to do following ERCP.

Home care

  • Don’t take aspirin or any other blood-thinning medications until your doctor says it’s okay.

  • Your doctor may prescribe an antibiotic, depending on what was done during the ERCP.

  • Remember, it is not uncommon for you to have a sore throat for 1 to 2 days after the procedure. Use lozenges or gargle with salt water for your sore throat. If you're not better in a few days be sure to contact your doctor.

  • Rest, drink fluids, and eat light meals. If you feel bloated or have excessive gas, use a heating pad on your abdomen to help reduce the discomfort. This should help you improve, but if it does not, be sure to contact your doctor.

  • Don’t drink alcohol for 2 days after the procedure.

Follow-up care

Make a follow-up appointment as directed by our staff.

When to seek medical care

Call your doctor right away if you have any of the following:

  • Trouble swallowing or worsening throat pain

  • Chest pain or severe abdominal pain

  • Fever above 100°F (37.7°C) or chills

  • Nausea and vomiting

  • Black or tarry stools