Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) is an essential technique for the diagnosis and treatment of pancreatobiliary diseases. However, ERCP-related complications such as pancreatitis, cholangitis, hemorrhage, and perforation may be problematic. For a successful and safe ERCP, preprocedural evaluations of the patients and intervention-related risk factors are needed. Furthermore, in light of the recent population aging and increase in chronic cardiopulmonary diseases in Korea, precautions including endoscopic sedation and prevention of cardiopulmonary complications should be considered. In this literature review, we describe these risk factors and the use of endoscopic sedation. In addition, we reviewed the commonly available guidewires, including their materials and options, used as a basic accessory for ERCP procedures.