At Spire Roding Hospital in Redbridge, Essex (on the east London borders), we now carry out a pioneering, pain-free investigation of the intestine called capsule endoscopy. This procedure uses an electronic, pill-sized, photographic capsule that takes pictures of the intestine (in areas which normally cannot be viewed or investigated without surgery).
Investigates the problem without the need for surgery
(Not actual size - capsules are 26mm x 11mm)
Capsule endoscopy 'maps' the gut and can help diagnose medical problems
If you are often excessively tired you could be anaemic (low blood count). One common cause of anaemia is bleeding within the gut. This may be from the stomach, large bowel or small bowel. The bleeding may not always be obvious - or visible - and therefore tests may need to be done to identify the cause. Once the cause is identified, corrective treatment of anaemia is usually successful.
Pain, diarrhoea or constipation can be symptoms of underlying intestinal problems. Diseases, such as Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis can cause inflammation (or even ulceration) in your bowel. More sinister diseases may also need to be ruled out - especially if you have visible bleeding from the back passage (never ignore such bleeding).
What does capsule endoscopy involve?
The small capsule is swallowed like a tablet and takes 54,000 pictures over 8 hours - 'mapping' the intestine. It may identify the cause of the anaemia and can also help to diagnose the bowel conditions mentioned above - or to identify/exclude conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
Read more about capsule endoscopy.