Checking your insides!: Endoscopy or Gastroscopy cost in Japan

Innovations in the medical field provide better practice and understanding of certain complex procedures such as endoscopy. Its practice and research in Japan is well-received by the medical community. It’s important to know what Japan offers in this field in case you are ever in need of it!

Table of Contents

  1. Introducing Endoscopy
  2. Endoscopy in Japan
  3. Important reminders
  4. Summary

Introducing Endoscopy

Endoscopy as a medical procedure

Have you experienced severe stomach pain? Are there sudden changes in your bowel movements, such as chronic constipation or diarrhea? Did you suddenly lose weight? Or do you have difficulty in swallowing? Well, if you answer yes in all those questions, you better consult a doctor. And as you do so, better prepare your ‘insides,’ for you might be needing an endoscopy! 

An endoscopy is a medical procedure often performed by a gastroenterologist doctor. It is an imaging technique to:

  1. Check the signs and symptoms you have by exploring your digestive tract,

  2. Identify and diagnose which medical condition you have by collecting tissue samples from the digestive system, and

  3. Treat any existing condition inside your digestive system, such as to stop the bleeding, remove polyps, and prevent cancer development.

Endoscopy is performed with the use of a flexible tube with a camera, light, and other special tools attached to it, while images are displayed on a screen monitor.

Endoscopy in Japan 

Steps on acquiring endoscopy services in Japan 

When it comes to health care practices, Japan is one of the leading quality providers globally. This means that acquiring medical assistance in the country is accessible, reliable, and efficient. In fact, in the endoscopic examination field, Japan is even considered as the global leader.

Assuming you are already in Japan, acquiring endoscopy services is a quick process of 3 simple steps. First, you need to consult a doctor. Generally, you can’t self-diagnose and conclude you need an endoscopy; instead, you must first tell the symptoms you experience to a doctor, and if the doctor says so, then you’ll proceed. It would help if you also inform your doctor about any existing condition you have, including medications you are taking to make necessary adjustments. 

Second, make an appointment to any Japanese hospital recommended by your doctor. As per the doctor's advice that there is a further process needed to confirm your symptoms, you should set an appointment to a clinic or hospital that performs endoscopy, especially if the type of endoscopy required for you needs other special tools and equipment. 

Third, prepare yourself. Generally, you would be advised to empty your stomach. You are expected to fast at least six hours before the procedure or depending on your doctor's direction. Make sure to bring somebody to accompany you. There are instances where you might be sedated to let you sleep during the surgery; a companion would be a handful in these circumstances to assist you in going home or run other important errands, and of course, it’s nice to have moral support.

Case studies of hospitals offering the services 

You can exercise full confidence upon obtaining endoscopy in Japan, particularly endoscopy types that require a much-complicated procedure. Why? The reason is that the hospitals and the medical techniques performed in the country have received high acclaim from world-renowned experts, thus assuring you of a safe and advanced endoscopy treatment and procedure. 

The best example is the Hiroshima University Hospital. In this hospital, you can find the facility of one of the leading endoscopy units in the country. It has nine rooms for all endoscopic procedures with sufficient spaces for medical equipment, cleaning room, dressing room, waiting room, restroom, and other essential areas for a hospital. It also has the latest endoscopy high-resolution video endoscopy system and other advanced machinery and medical tools. So, not only would you get a quality consultation or receive excellent treatment, but in this hospital, you would be comfortable, relaxed, and joyful with the perks of a first-rate facility.

※ Hiroshima University - Hiroshima University Hospital, "Department of Endoscopy"

There are other hospitals around Japan that offer superb care and extensive procedures of endoscopy as well. On top of that are St. Luke’s International Hospital and Sano Hospital. Both of these hospitals captured the foremost features expected in a department of endoscopy at a Japanese hospital.

There are also bilingual clinics, such as Nakamura Azabujuban Clinic in Tokyo and Tatsumi Clinic and Hospital in Osaka. 

Costs of endoscopy

Generally, gastroscopy would cost 10,000 to 30,000 yen while a colonoscopy would be  20,000 to 30,000 yen. A lower gastrointestinal endoscopy is around 33,000 yen and upper gastrointestinal endoscopy is around 22,000 yen excluding taxes.  A friendly disclaimer about these prices is they may differ depending on the facility offering the service and the hospitals in Japan. 

※ Japan Healthcare Info, "Gastroscopy and Colonoscopy"
※ Sano Hospital, "A safe and easy Endoscopic Examination"
※ St. Luke's International Hospital, "Comprehensive Checkup Fees"

Important reminders

Coverage of health insurance for the Japanese and foreigners living in Japan

An endoscopy in Japan is covered by health insurance hence making the amount to pay less. Every citizen is entitled to health insurance in Japan. Also, foreigners living in the country can apply for health insurance and enjoy its massive benefits. While those individuals seeking medical attention in Japan and do not have health insurance are expected to pay the full cost.

※ International Student Insurance, "Health Insurance in Japan"
※ Japan Healthcare Info, "Gastroscopy and Colonoscopy"

Additional fees

Other than the examining procedure there are additional fees you must pay if you are required with further operation such as a biopsy or a resection. For example, a colonoscopy biopsy would approximately cost 30,000 to 50,000 yen while a colonoscopy resection would approximately cost 60,000 to 70,000 yen. The price varies per hospital and per condition. 

※ Sano Hospital, "A safe and easy Endoscopic Examination"


The Japanese citizens and foreigners living in the country can benefit from the advanced medical system of Japan. If an individual experiences inflammation, heartburn, constipation, digestive issues, and other medical concerns inside their body, an endoscopy is needed to examine that. But with the endoscopy in Japan, a patient will not only be diagnosed and be on the path to a cure but would also receive a world-class treatment recognized by experts. So, if you are feeling something ‘inside’ you, it might be treatable with endoscopy!

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