Colonoscopy is an endoscopic method that can optimally visualize the colon mucosa and end of the small intestine. It’s a procedure that saves lives but often patients describe it as unpleasant. However, there is a new type of screening similar to colonoscopy that gives a much more detailed picture of the health of your intestates.
This screening involves a capsule that serves as a camera. In this article, we will explain this new type of procedure that just like colonoscopy can save your life.
The New Capsule Screening
This modern technology allows doctors to capture images of the inside of the colon. The capsule transmits these images instantly to a computer. The capsule screening makes reality what we have only recently seen in science fiction films, in which we find a way to travel within our bodies.
There are two types of capsules one is for small intestine and the other type is for the colon. Small bowel diseases are rare and there are relatively few malignant tumors in this part of the digestive tube. The goal was to further refine the technology and create a capsule that would allow examining the colon.
This organ most commonly shows carcinoma of the human body. Unlike the capsule used for examination of the small intestine, the capsule for the examination of the colon has a much more powerful battery. This allows it to travel through the entire intestine from the mouth and ultimately into the colon. It uses two cameras to record its interior and recognize tumors, polyps or other pathological formations.
As colon tumors are becoming more common, especially in developed countries, there is a need to diagnose them at an early stage. When they are in the form of polyps they must be removed endoscopically because the polyps can one day turn into cancer.
Colon examination with a capsule requires preparation of a patient similar to that for colonoscopic examination. It is necessary for the colon to be perfectly clean in order for any pathological changes to be detected. Because most patients want to be examined by non-invasive methods, the future of the colon capsule is promising.
The advancement of technology should allow new generations of capsules to be navigated as opposed to moving solely by peristalsis and gravity. What is the next goal in capsule development is to create an operative capsule that will be able to make biopsy, sclerosis or polypectomy using certain supplements. Moreover, in 5 to 10 years the capsules with this capability will be commercially available. By that time the diagnostic capsule is likely to become a routine examination in patients involved in colorectal cancer screening.
The Difference Between Colonoscopy And Capsule Endoscopy
Colonoscopies are the best method for the detection of lower gastrointestinal diseases. But, this exam has a limitation because it can’t visually check anything beyond the colon. On the other hand, the capsule endoscopy can provide pictures from the small intestine as well. Patients with Crohn’s disease can benefit from the cam capsule the most. Over 75% of Crohn’s patients have changes in one part of the small intestine.
However, cam capsules can’t measure the treatment of intestinal polyps the way colonoscopy does. They can only provide image information.
Advantages And Disadvantages Of Capsule Endoscopy
- Allows direct image of all parts of the intestine (small and large intestine)
- No invasive method that is not unpleasant
- High-quality photos
- Inability of sampling
- Higher price than other intestinal exams