Wireless Capsule Endoscopy
Capsule endoscopy is a technique designed to allow doctors to visualize the most inaccessible parts of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. The small bowel capsule is an ingestible camera in a pill, approximately the size of a large vitamin, which passes through the patient’s GI tract, taking about 50,000-60,000 digital images for the doctor’s review. The vast majority of capsule endoscopy studies are for visualization of the small bowel (intestine). There are also capsule devices for use in the esophagus and the colon.
A bowel prep to clean the intestine, similar to that used for colonoscopy, may be recommended by the doctor to take the night before undergoing a capsule endoscopy. The exam is usually done in an office setting. Sensors are placed on the patient’s abdomen and the data recorder is attached to a large belt worn by the patient. The capsule is then activated and swallowed with a sip of water. The patient may leave the doctor’s office and continue with routine daily activities, including eating a light meal after several hours. Later, the patient returns for removal of the equipment, and then returns home. There is no sedation needed for the procedure and it is completely painless. The capsule is disposable and usually passes out of the GI tract unnoticed. Your physician will analyze the results of the test and contact you to discuss a treatment plan.
SOURCE: ASGE Patient Information