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BHG - Beverly Hills Gastroenterology

Wireless Capsule Enteroscopy

What Is a Wireless Capsule Enteroscopy?

Wireless Capsule Enteroscopy is a procedure performed by a Gastroenterologist to examine the middle section of your gastrointestinal tract called the small intestine, which includes the duodenum, the jejunum, and the ileum. During the procedure your doctor will use a pill-sized video capsule to transmit high quality images of the inside lining of your gastrointestinal tract to a video monitor.


When Would I Need Wireless Capsule Enteroscopy?

Wireless Capsule Enteroscopy helps your doctor evaluate the small intestine, the part of the gastrointestinal tract that can’t be reached by traditional Upper Endoscopy or Colonoscopy. Your physician may recommend Wireless Capsule Enteroscopy to evaluate certain gastrointestinal symptoms such as abdominal pain, diarrhea, or gastrointestinal bleeding – and certain gastrointestinal disorders such as inflammatory bowel disease or anemia. Wireless Capsule Enteroscopy has been found to be more accurate than x-ray studies for the detection of inflammation, ulcers, and tumors of the small bowel, and it is very useful for finding a cause of bleeding from the small intestine.


How Do I Prepare for Wireless Capsule Enteroscopy?

Our staff at bhg will give you detailed instructions in advance. Preparation for Wireless Capsule Enteroscopy is safe and simple. You will be asked to fast for your procedure. Tell your doctor about any medical problems that you have, including: swallowing disorders, the presence of a pacemaker, any previous history of bowel obstructions or abdominal surgery, and any history of inflammatory bowel disease. Bring a complete list of your allergies and medications, including over-the-counter medications, vitamins, herbs, and supplements.


What Can I Expect During Wireless Capsule Enteroscopy?

Our staff at bhg will prepare you for the procedure by attaching sensors to your abdomen and a data recorder to a belt worn around your waist. You will then be given the capsule to swallow with a glass of water. The capsule is the size of a vitamin and measures 11mm x 26 mm and weighs less than 4 grams. It contains an imaging device and a light source on one side and transmits images at a rate of 2 images per second, generating more than 50,000 images over an 8-hour period as it travels through your small intestine. You will be able to drink clear liquids after 2 hours following capsule ingestion and a light meal after four hours following capsule ingestion. After an 8-hour period, you will return to our office where your sensors and the data recorder will be removed by our staff.


What Happens After Wireless Capsule Enteroscopy?

You will be able to eat a regular diet and resume your normal activities. The capsule, which is disposable, will pass naturally with a bowel movement, usually within 24 hours. Your images from the data recorder will be downloaded to a workstation where our physicians will review the images and generate your report. Patients are usually called within a few days with their test results.


What Are the Risks of Having Wireless Capsule Enteroscopy?

While complications can occur, they are rare when Wireless Capsule Enteroscopy is performed by a board certified gastroenterologist who is specially trained and experienced. Potential risks include complications from a possible obstruction. This usually results from a stricture or narrowing of the intestine caused by inflammation, prior surgery, or a tumor.

Gastrointestinal disorders can be caused by or exacerbated by factors such as diet, stress, lifestyle, and genetics. After diagnosing your condition, we will help you understand the possible causes of your problems and educate you about nutrition and lifestyle changes that can help you feel better and remain healthy. We also provide genetic testing when applicable for patients and their family members.…Read more

We are continually strengthening our educational resources for patients and their families, as part of our strong commitment to our patient's health.…Read more

Call us today at 310.659.1300 to schedule an appointment.