Our Services / Capsule Endoscopy

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Capsule Endoscopy services offered in Chesterfield, MO

When you have symptoms such as intestinal bleeding, abdominal pain, or chronic diarrhea, you may need a capsule endoscopy to diagnose the underlying problem. The physicians at Gateway Gastroenterology in Chesterfield, Missouri, have been offering capsule endoscopy since 2003 and have reviewed over 1,000 studies. Capsule endoscopy is one of the best diagnostic tools available that provides a clear view of problems in your small intestine. To learn more or to schedule an appointment, call the office or request an appointment online today.

Capsule Endoscopy Q & A

What is a capsule endoscopy?

A capsule endoscopy, or pill endoscopy, is a diagnostic procedure to examine the inside of your small intestine, an area that can’t be visualized using a standard endoscopy or colonoscopy.

During a capsule endoscopy, you swallow a tiny, pill-sized capsule that contains a wireless camera. The device travels harmlessly through your intestine, taking pictures along the way and transmitting them to a recording device.

The images are transferred to a computer that strings them together, creating a video showing the inside lining of your small intestine.

Why would I need a capsule endoscopy?

Your provider at Gateway Gastroenterology may recommend a capsule endoscopy to diagnose the cause of symptoms such as unexplained bleeding, abdominal pain, and chronic diarrhea.

Health conditions often diagnosed with a capsule endoscopy include:

  • Celiac disease
  • Ulcerative colitis
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Duodenal ulcer
  • Gastrointestinal cancer
  • Small intestine polyps

Your provider may use a capsule endoscopy to diagnose malabsorption problems in the small intestine.

How do I prepare for a capsule endoscopy?

Your digestive tract needs to be empty to ensure the camera can pick up clear images of the intestinal lining. Most patients need to stop eating and drinking at least 12 hours before their procedure.

You may also need to stop taking certain medications or use a laxative. You receive detailed preparation instructions from your provider at Gateway Gastroenterology.

What happens during and after a capsule endoscopy?

Before you take the capsule, your provider at Gateway Gastroenterology places adhesive sensors on your abdomen and attaches a recording device to your waist using a belt.

Then you swallow the capsule with some water to help it wash down. After you swallow the device, you won’t feel it moving through your digestive tract.

In most cases, you go home after successfully swallowing the device, but you need to avoid strenuous activities for a few hours.

You can drink clear fluids after two hours and have a light meal about four hours after taking the capsule. Then you return the recording equipment the next day.

The camera safely travels through your digestive tract, where it’s eliminated in your stool. You can safely flush the camera down the toilet.

If you have questions about a capsule endoscopy procedure or you need to schedule an appointment, call Gateway Gastroenterology or request an appointment online today.