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Capsule Endoscopy

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Capsule Endoscopy

Endoscopy is now too easy thanks to the capsule endoscopy that is used to identify diseases of small intestine and colon. "Capsule endoscopy", one of the newest methods used to examine ulcers, polyps, cancer or other abnormal formations located in small intestines and colon, is the most advanced technology.


Pain-free and Safe Endoscopy

Endoscopy is now too easy thanks to the capsule endoscopy that is used to identify diseases of small intestine and colon. "Capsule endoscopy", one of the newest methods used to examine ulcers, polyps, cancer or other abnormal formations located in small intestines and colon, is the most advanced technology.

Capsule colonoscopy extended the intended use of this modality, as a tiny capsule with a tiny camera swallowed by the patient enables doctors to evaluate the entire digestive tract.

Capsule enteroscopy: a capsule (measures 1x3 cm (11 mm x 26 mm) and weighs only 4 g) equipped with a mini robot or a tiny camera and a micro-chip is swallowed 8 to 12 hours after the patient stops eating and drinking; the capsule travels along the digestive tract and captures images and eventually, the capsule is passed together with stool. Although it travels through the entire digestive tract, it is principally reserved for small intestines that cannot be evaluated with gastroscopy and colonoscopy.

The digital images captured and recorded by the micro-chip of the capsule are transmitted to the mobile phone sized recorder device (similar to a radio) and finally, the images are reviewed in detail in a computer.

Standard capsules capture two images per second, while this advanced capsules captures up to 18 images per second and around 50,000 images per hour with 8x magnification. The capsule has 1450 projection angles and it can identify objects measuring only 0.1 mm in diameter and tissues down to 20-mm depth.

The bowel should be prepared using elementary diet, laxatives, sodium phosphate, polyethylene glycol (PEG) and mannitol one day before the capsule enteroscopy.

How is capsule endoscopy performed?

After preparations are started and completed one day ago, the patient should be fasting for a particular time while presenting to the gastroenterology department; the recorder part of the camera is attached to the waist belt. The capsule is swallowed with a glass of water. Patients are allowed to drink water 2 hours after the capsule is swallowed and to eat liquid foods, such as soup, 4 hours later. Meanwhile, the patient can resume routine daily living. The patient brings the recorder device to the hospital 12 hours after the recording is started. The capsule leaves the stomach behind at 48 ± 52 minutes, the small intestine and the caecum at 276 ± 79 minutes. The capsule is excreted from the body in stool 24 hours later on average. Imaging procedures, such as MRI, are contraindicated in this 24-hour period.

"Capsule colonoscopy" is one of the newest methods used to examine ulcers, polyps, cancer or other abnormal formations located in small intestines and colon in addition to the colonoscopy, the most advanced technology.

In this method, a camera, equal to a vitamin pill in size, is swallowed by the patient and the images captured by the capsule are transmitted to a device that is attached to the waist belt of the patient.  Comparing to capsule enteroscopy, capsule colonoscopy has two cameras, one in the front and one at the back. Thus, images of both sides are captured and even small lesions can be imaged. Next, those images are reviewed in detail on computer screen. The capsule stays in the body for approximately 12 hours and excreted in the stool. The patient does not need to stay at hospital. This method is an optimal alternative for patients who cannot be sedated, patients with respiratory distress and patients who refuse standard colonoscopy.

Colonic cleansing with diet and medications is also a necessity for capsule colonoscopy. Next, the patient visits the hospital in the procedure day and swallows the capsule in size of relatively large vitamin pill. A mobile phone-sized receiver device is attached to the waist belt of the patient. The patient may go to home and rest thereafter. Patient can eat meal. Patient visits the hospital again at afternoon and the receiver is handed back. Gastroenterologists review the recorded images and make necessary examinations.