Small Bowel Capsule Endoscopy Instructions
As you are aware, obtaining authorization from your insurance company to perform a small bowel capsule endoscopy is often a long and arduous process.
Despite following the manufacturer’s instructions, many of our patients have had examinations in which the small intestine could not be well visualized due to retained food particles. To ensure a more accurate test, we have revised the instructions and ask that you drink a bowel laxative the evening prior to your examination. In order to obtain optimal visualization of the small bowel (small intestine), please follow our instructions carefully. The bowel laxative is a prescription medication called Colyte (Golytely). Fill the prescription at least one (1) day prior to your examination. Mix and refrigerate the Colyte solution. If you are taking iron or iron containing supplements, stop taking them 1 week prior to your scheduled capsule endoscopy.
The Day before Capsule Endoscopy
- In the morning, mix and refrigerate the Colyte.
- After breakfast, start a clear liquid diet (broth, buillion, clear fruit juices or soda, coffee or tea – without milk or cream). Do not drink anything that is red or purple in color. Do not drink juice with pulp, dairy or soy products.
- Starting around 6-7 pm, drink 1 glass (8 ounce) of Colyte every 10 minutes until finished with half the container (2 liters).
- DO NOT eat, drink, chew gum or smoke after 10pm.
- You may brush your teeth.
Day of Capsule Endoscopy
Arrive at our office dressed in loose fitting, two-piece clothing. Do not take your regular medications. Bring them with you and you will be able to take them 2 hours after swallowing the capsule.
Upon arriving at our office, you will be checked-in and asked to give your informed consent.
The Sensor Array (a series of wires and electrodes similar to those used when taking an EKG) will be applied to your abdomen with adhesive pads and connected to a walkman-like Data Recorder which is worn in a belt around your waist. You will then ingest the PillCam SB capsule.
After 8 hours you will return to our office to have the Sensory Array and Data Recorder removed. Removing the equipment is a fairly quick process and should take only a few minutes. The Pillcam capsule is disposable and will be excreted naturally in your bowel movement. You do not need to retrieve it.
After ingesting the PillCam SB capsule
After ingesting the PillCam SB capsule, do not eat or drink for at least 2 hours. After 4 hours you may have a light lunch and continue drinking clear liquids throughout the procedure. After the examination is completed you may return to your normal diet. Contact our office immediately if you suffer from any abdominal pain, nausea or vomiting during SB capsule endoscopy.
After ingesting the PillCam SB capsule and until it is excreted, you should not be near any source of powerful electromagnetic fields such as one created near an MRI device or amateur (ham) radio.
Occasionally, some images may be lost due to radio interference (e.g. from amateur radio transmitter, MRI, etc.). On rare occasions this may result in the need to repeat the SB Capsule Endoscopy examination.
SB capsule endoscopy lasts approximately 8 hours. Do not disconnect the equipment or remove the belt at any time during this period. Since the Data Recorder is actually a small computer, it should be treated with utmost care and protection. Avoid sudden movement and banging of the Data Recorder.
During SB capsule endoscopy, you will need to verify every 15 minutes that the small light on top of the Data Recorder is blinking twice per second. If, for some reason it stops blinking at this rate, record the time and contact us. You should also record the time and nature of any event such as eating, drinking, your activity and unusual sensations. Return the Event Form with these notes to us at the time you return the equipment.
Avoid any strenuous physical activity especially if it involves sweating and do not bend over or stoop during capsule endoscopy.
After completing SB Capsule Endoscopy
You will be instructed on how to return the equipment at the end of the test. If you were instructed to remove the equipment by yourself, do the following: (a) Disconnect the Sensor Array from the Data Recorder; (b) Take off the Recorder Belt (with the Data Recorder and Battery Pack); (c) Disconnect the Battery Pack from the Data Recorder (d) Place Data Recorder and Battery Pack in a safe place. To remove the Sensor Array from your abdomen, do not pull the leads of the Sensor Array! Peel off each adhesive sleeve starting with the non-adhesive tab without removing the sensor from the adhesive sleeve. Place the Sensor-Array with the rest of the equipment.
The Data Recorder stores the images of your examination. Handle the Data Recorder, Recorder-Belt, Sensor Array and Battery Pack carefully. Do not expose them to shock, vibration or direct sunlight, which may result in loss of information. Return all of the equipment to our office as soon as possible.
If you did not positively verify the excretion of the PillCam SB capsule from your body, and you develop unexplained post procedure nausea, abdominal pain or vomiting, us for further evaluation and possible abdominal X-ray examination.
Undergoing an MRI while the capsule is inside your body may result in serious damage to your intestinal tract or abdominal cavity. If you did not positively verify the excretion of the PillCam SB capsule from your body, you should contact your physician for evaluation and possible abdominal X-ray before undergoing an MRI examination.