Information about your Camera Capsule Endoscopy
What is camera capsule endoscopy?
Camera capsule endoscopy is an investigation of the small intestine. A capsule containing a tiny camera is swallowed and naturally passes through the digestive system. The camera takes images which are transmitted to a data recorder worn in a harness around your waist. This test takes 8 hours to complete and the images are transferred to a computer for your doctor to review.
If you take iron tablets these will need to be stopped 5 days prior to the test.
If you have diabetes please inform the staff as you may require special instructions regarding your diet or diabetic medications.
Are there any risks?
There is a very small risk that the capsule could get stuck in a previously unsuspected narrowing and cause a blockage of the bowel. This is extremely unlikely to occur as most people who require a capsule endoscopy have already undergone numerous bowel investigations, which would show up any narrowing within the bowel.
The day before the capsule endoscopy
- After your normal breakfast start a clear fluid diet (water, black tea, black coffee, clear apple juice or lemonade).
- At 4.00pm dilute the first sachet of Klean prep in one litre of water and drink over the next hour.
- After drinking the Klean Prep, drink unsweetened clear drinks to prevent dehydration. Drinks can be warm or hot if you feel cold.
- At 5.00pm dilute the second sachet of Klean Prep in one litre of water and drink over the next hour.
- From 10.00pm do not drink fluid except for a sip of water with necessary medications; do not take any medications in the 2 hours prior to your procedure.
On the day of the capsule endoscopy
Before the procedure:
- Do not take any medications in the 2 hours prior to your procedure.
- On the morning of your procedure please do not eat or drink anything.
- You shouldarrive at Hutt Hospital Endoscopy unit by 8:30am.
- Before the examination you will be asked questions about your general health and about medications you take. It is useful to bring with you a list of the medications you take. A doctor or nurse will answer any questions you may have.
- Wear loose fitting 2 piece clothing (please do not wear metal belts or belts with metal buckles).
- You may be asked to take a Metoclopramide tablet shortly after arrival. Metoclopramide (Maxolon) helps the camera pass through the digestive system.
- You will be asked to swallow the capsule containing the camera with a small amount of water containing Simethicone. Simethicone is a medication to reduce air bubbles in the digestive system.
- A nurse will ask for your permission to strap a harness to your abdomen and connect a data recorder which is held in a pouch and worn on a belt over your shoulder.
During the capsule endoscopy
- The capsule endoscopy procedure will last for 8 hours, during which time you may leave the hospital and you can do most normal activities.
- During the capsule endoscopy avoid any strenuous physical activity. Do not bend or stoop as this may distort the images from the camera and avoid powerful electromagnetic field such as one created near a MRI (Magnetic Scanner) device at a hospital, until the capsule has passed. You can still use a microwave oven which is safe to use while the capsule is inside you.
- Do not swallow chewing gum while the capsule is inside you.
- Two hours after swallowing the capsule: do not eat or drink anything except a small glass of water, and you may take necessary medications.
- Four hours after swallowing the capsule you may have a light lunch.
- Do not remove the data recorder at any time during this period because it is recording the images of your digestive system. You need to handle this equipment carefully. Do not expose the equipment to shock, vibration or direct sunlight, which may result in loss of important information.
- If you have Diabetes please inform the staff as you may require special instructions regarding your diet or diabetic medications.
What happens after the procedure?
You will need to return to Hutt Hospital by 4.00pm. The data recorder and harness will be removed and the information downloaded.The images will be examined by the doctor.
You may then eat and drink normally. The capsule is disposable and it will pass out of your body naturally in your bowel movement.
Who can I contact if I have any questions?
You will be able to ask questions before your procedure when you are discussing the benefits and risks with the doctor.
If you have any problems understanding or reading any of this information, please contact the Endoscopy Unit staff: (04) 570 9191.