Capsule endoscopy in real life: a four-centre experience of 160 consecutive patients in Israel.
The Given Capsule procedure is a new system designed to aid the gastroenterologist in diagnosing small-bowel disease. Capsule endoscopy has provided gastroenterologists with easy access to small-bowel mucosa for examination by direct visualisation. The aim of our prospective study was to determine the indication for capsule endoscopy and to describe the identified pathology within the gastrointestinal tract. Patients with unexplained gastrointestinal bleeding from suspected small-bowel pathology of an undisclosed nature or with unexplained abdominal pain for more than 6 months were eligible to undergo capsule endoscopy. Patients with suspected intestinal obstruction or with a history of major abdominal surgery were excluded. One hundred and sixty patients (70 women, 90 men; mean age 49.0 +/- 19.8 years, range 13-91 years) ingested the capsule easily. They had undergone 6 +/- 2.9 investigative procedures before capsule endoscopy. Two (1.25%) patients who had non-natural excretions underwent surgery: one was found to have Meckel's diverticulum and the other had stricturing Crohn's disease. The mean haemoglobin in iron-deficiency anaemia patients was 9.1 +/- 2.2 g%. The diagnostic yield of capsule endoscopy was 57.7% in iron-deficiency anaemia and 52.4% in suspected Crohn's disease. Capsule endoscopy detected the more clinically significant intestinal lesions. It was of diagnostic value in patients with obscure bleeding, suspected Crohn's disease and malabsorption, but the diagnostic yield in patients with chronic pain or irritable bowel syndrome-type symptoms was low.