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Endoscopic Capsule

Home  /  Procedures  /  Endoscopic Capsule

Cápsula Endoscópica

The endoscopic capsule is a procedure that uses a small wireless camera to obtain pictures of the digestive tract. The capsule is the size of a vitamin pill, and has cameras on both ends. As the capsule moves through the digestive tract it captures hundreds of pictures that are transmitted to an external device placed in the patient’s waist.

The endoscopic capsule allows the visualization of the small intestine, which remains out of reach for other traditional endoscopic procedures.

When is an endoscopic capsule indicated?

This procedure is indicated for the following reasons:
– Digestive hemorrhage of unknown origin
– Chronic anemia with previous endoscopic tests with normal results
– Recurring episodes of digestive hemorrhage in the form of black or dark red feces with previous endoscopic tests with normal results
– Crohn’s disease
– Tumor in the small intestine
– Hereditary polyposis syndrome
– Celiac disease
– Intestinal malabsorption syndrome
– Chronic abdominal pain of unknown origin, with or without diarrhea

What are the advantages of performing an endoscopic capsule procedure?
– Does not require an endoscopy with sedation
– It is an outpatient procedure
– The procedure is not painful
– It is able to identify the source of bleeding or the location of the tumor in the small intestine

How does one prepare for the procedure?

It is necessary for the patient to fast for 6-8 hours prior to the start of the procedure, in addition to following a protocol regarding the diet and laxative solutions on the days leading up.

A few cables will be attached to the patient’s abdomen using patches, which will connect to the recording device.

The patient will swallow the capsule with a small amount of water, and will thereafter remain fasting for 4 hours after the start of the test, followed by a diet consisting of soft foods and liquids.

The capsule has a battery duration of 8 hours. The test is started early in the morning, the patient can be scheduled to have the patches, cables, and recording device removed on the same day.

The capsule will be eliminated normally from the body within the first week following the test.


The test report is ready within 3-5 days after the procedure. The test results can help identify the cause of the symptoms reported by the patient and select the most adequate treatment option.

Please plan to discuss the test results with your physician during your next medical appointment.

The following are pictures obtained with the endoscopic capsule Pillcam 2: