SmartPill the clever way forward in helping diagnose Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) and other functional bowel disorders

Spire Cambridge Lea Hospital is pleased to be the first private hospital outside of London offering the SmartPill with local expert Dr Stephen Middleton, Consultant Gastroenterologist.

The innovative SmartPill is a new outpatient diagnostic service, designed to record and evaluate gastric emptying time, small bowel transit time, colonic transit time, combined small and large bowel transit time and whole gut transit time. The SmartPill will also enable Dr Middleton to monitor the motility, pressure waves, temperature and PH (acidity) of your gastrointestinal tract.

The data collected from the SmartPill will assist Dr Middleton’s diagnosis and evaluation of functional disorders including IBS, gastroparesis (a disorder in which the stomach takes too long to empty its contents) and chronic constipation. Once diagnosis is made Dr Middleton will then decide on your most appropriate course of treatment.

When should the SmartPill be considered as a diagnostic treatment?
The smart pill can be used to diagnose people with abdominal pain and bloating, constipation and an irregular bowel habit. 

How does the SmartPill differ to Capsule Endoscopy?
Unlike endoscopy the smartpill can provide extensive information about the function of the entire gastrointestinal tract from the stomach to the rectum.  Furthermore the procedure only involves swallowing a pill size device.

How does the SmartPill work?

A capsule the size of a large pill when ingested, travels through the intestines.  As it progresses through your system, it collects information and then wirelessly sends it to a data receiver that you can wear on a lanyard around your neck or on a belt clip. The SmartPill test is carried out within  the outpatient department at the Spire Cambridge Lea Hospital, after capsule ingestion you are free to return to your regular daily activities


How long before I get my results?
The test ends when the single-use capsule is excreted naturally from the body, usually within a couple of days. You will then need to simply return the data receiver to Dr Middleton at Spire Cambridge Lea Hospital and arrange an outpatient consultation appointment to follow up and review the your results.

*While SmartPill will not replace procedures like endoscopy and colonoscopy, it may be used instead of current nuclear medicine tests to assess the function of the stomach and bowel.  It also provides more information than the other available tests.

Introduction to Dr Stephen Middleton

What is IBS with Dr Stephen Middleton

The SmartPill and its use in IBS diagnosis

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How to contact us

  • To make an appointment with Dr Middleton please call 01767 677810
  • For self pay treatment enquiries please call
    01223 266929
  • For all other enquiries please call the hospital on 01223 266900

Alternatively complete our online enquiry form and we can call you.

Insured Patients
Simply visit your GP and ask them to refer you to Dr Stephen Middleton at Spire Cambridge Lea Hospital. Your GP will write a letter of referral and then you can contact Dr Middleton’s office on 01767 677810 to arrange your first out-patient appointment.

Self Pay Patients

For self-pay treatments, simply call us on 01223 266929 to request a guide price or to discuss your personal situation.

About Dr Middleton

 Dr Middleton qualified in 1984, trained in London and Cambridge and has nearly 20 years of research and clinical practice in Cambridge. He has been a consultant physician at Addenbrooke's Cambridge for over 10 years and lecturer for the University of Cambridge.

He is the lead physician for dyspepsia and dysphagia and director of the gastrointestinal motility service and irritable bowel syndrome service.

He has a particular interest in nutritional therapy for Crohn's disease and extensive research and clinical experience in inflammatory bowel disease. He also has a major interest in nutritional treatment of irritable bowel disease.

Dr Middleton will be working with Dr H Anthony Hobson (AlimentaryInnervations Ltd) for this new service

© Spire Healthcare Group plc (2016)