Capsule endoscopy is a minimally invasive procedure used to observe digestive disorders, primarily within the small bowel. This procedure is used to obtain high-resolution photographic images that may not be accessible through other procedures used to visualize and evaluate the digestive system. The GI tract is a part of the digestive system and extends from the mouth to the anus.
How the Procedure Works
The size of a vitamin, the capsule endoscope consists of batteries, a light source, camera, and transmitter.
After the capsule is activated and swallowed with a glass of water by the patient, it begins transmitting images of the digestive system to a receiver worn by the patient. The capsule takes two pictures per second for approximately eight hours as it travels through the esophagus, stomach, small intestine and large intestine, and is excreted naturally.
After the exam, the patient returns the receiver to the physician or a nurse, who downloads the images to a computer and reviews the images for abnormalities or sources of bleeding.