Dra. Ana Rita Herculano Gastroenterologist
Videocapsule enteroscopy is a non-invasive procedure that uses a small wireless camera to acquire photographs of the digestive tract.
This chamber is housed in a capsule the size of a pill that the patient swallows.
During its journey through the digestive tract, the capsule takes several photographs that are transmitted to a recorder that the patient takes with him during the exam and which allows viewing the images in real time.
The patient can go about his life as usual and return to the endoscopy service at the end of the day to download the images using specific, high-quality software. The single-use capsule is eliminated in the faeces one to two days later.
Since the introduction of the first capsule endoscopy in 2000, it has been an essential test in the investigation and diagnosis of small bowel diseases, in places that essential endoscopic tests (high endoscopy and colonoscopy) do not reach.
As a simple and comfortable procedure for the patient, it is an essential exam that is performed on a large scale. It should not be used as a first-line exam or intended to replace conventional endoscopic exams. It has become, however, due to the difficulty of accessing the entire small intestine, as the first-line exam for the investigation of obscure digestive haemorrhage, an important method of evaluation for Crohn's disease, small bowel tumours and polyposis surveillance relatives.
16, March 2021