Advantages Of Capsule Endoscopy

Dr. Peter Cotton – Gastroenterology & Hepatology, MUSC Dr. Peter Cotton:  Capsule endoscopy has been dominated, at least initially, by looking at the small bowel.  But it’s now been applied very nicely to the esophagus for screening.  And the only results of capsule colonoscopy are remarkably good.  There are obviously some issues in terms of prep and distension.  But, give the patient a choice, they would much prefer to swallow a little pill and go home, get about their business and come back and get the pictures downloaded onto a computer, rather than having this rather undignified procedure of colonoscopy.  So, it’s a very exciting and evolving field.  The most important thing is that, whatever is chosen, or the patient chooses, is reasonably accurate.  We know the accuracy of colonoscopy in good hands.  It would be sad if people are diverted to another procedure because they don’t like the idea of colonoscopy, if that procedure is not as accurate.   People are hoping that bringing other methods to bear will actually increase the number of people who go for screening.  But it’s also possible that the ones who are going to go for screening are going to divert to something else that isn’t so good, so that’s a worry.