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Capsule Endoscopy Instructions

Pillcam endoscopy (capsule endoscopy) is a special technique for looking inside the GI tract and is particularly useful in looking at the small intestine. The patient swallows a small, pill‐sized capsule containing a miniature video camera with a transmitter, batteries and a light source allowing a painless exam of the small intestine. The camera sends multiple images to a recording device worn around the waist. The capsule is designed for single use and the disposal will not harm the environment or home plumbing. Pillcam endoscopy is used both as a diagnostic procedure and to monitor the progress of treatment.

At your appointment, adhesive patches will be placed on your abdomen and connected by wires to the recording device worn around the waist. You will swallow the capsule while standing at the facility. You will then be allowed to leave and go about your regular routine. Record your activities and sensations, as well as when you eat and drink. A small light on the device will indicate that it is recording test data. After 8 hours you will return to the facility so that we can remove the leads and recorder.

Granite Peaks Endoscopy will give you the results of the procedure once the doctor has analyzed the results (this may take up to 14 days). The capsule will continue to pass through your system and will be eliminated through a normal bowel movement typically within 1‐3 days following the procedure. You will need to verify that you passed the device, but there is no need to retrieve it.

The Day BEFORE Your Procedure

  • Eat a normal lunch at 12:00 noon. After lunch, drink only clear liquids until 6 PM to ensure you are well hydrated. From 6 pm do not eat or drink anything except necessary medication with a sip of water.
  • Abstain from smoking 24 hours prior to undergoing a Capsule Endoscopy.

The Day OF Your Procedure

  • Take necessary morning medication with a sip of water at least 2 hours prior to your appointment time.
  • Nothing by mouth (including medication) beginning 2 hours prior to your appointment time. No water, gum or mints.
  • Arrive at Granite Peaks Gastroenterology at your scheduled time wearing loose‐fitting, two‐piece clothing.
  • Once you are connected to the monitor, you will be asked to swallow the pillcam capsule.

After Ingesting the Pillcam

After ingesting the capsule, do not eat or drink for at least 2 hours. After 2 hours, you may have clear liquids. After 4 hours, you may have one light snack and additional clear liquids until the end of the examination period. Once the examination is completed, you may return to your normal diet. Contact your physician immediately if you suffer from any abdominal pain, nausea or vomiting during your Capsule Endoscopy. Avoid strenuous physical activity, especially if it involves sweating, and do not bend over or stoop during the Capsule Endoscopy.

After ingesting the capsule, and until it is excreted, stay away from any source of powerful electromagnetic fields such as one created near an MRI device or amateur (ham) radio. Images can be lost due to radio interference (e.g. from amateur radio transmitter, MRI, applications on your phone that use a radio transmitter – such as ApplePay, ETC). You must verify that the capsule has been excreted before scheduling an MRI as this may cause damage to your intestinal tract. In rare cases, this may result in the need to REPEAT the Capsule Endoscopy examination.

The Capsule Endoscopy lasts approximately 8 hours. DO NOT disconnect the equipment or remove any part of the apparatus at any time during this period. Since the recorder is actually a small computer; it should be treated with care and protection. Avoid sudden movement and banging of the machine. Keep all the equipment out of direct sunlight, which could cause a loss of information. Every 15 minutes, check to verify that the small light in top of the recorder is blinking twice per second. If for some reason it stops blinking at this rate, record the time and contact your physician.

Arrive at the Granite Peaks Endoscopy Center at your scheduled time. Please call us at 801-619-9000 if you have any questions regarding your preparation.