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Ang D, Luman W, Ooi CJ
Correspondence: Dr Ooi Choon Jin, firstname.lastname@example.org
Introduction Double balloon enteroscopy (DBE) is a novel procedure that allows complete visualisation, biopsy and treatment of small intestinal disorders. We describe our early experience with the use of DBE, evaluating the indications, diagnostic rates and complications. A secondary aim of the study was to compare the findings from DBE with wireless capsule endoscopy (WCE).
Methods Retrospective study of patients referred to the Department of Gastroenterology and Hepathology at the Singapore General Hospital for evaluation of suspected small bowel diseases between February 2005 and May 2006 was done. A total of 34 procedures were conducted on 30 patients. A standardised data collection form was used.
Results DBE was carried out via the oral approach (19 patients), anal approach (eight patients), and both approaches (three patients). Mean age was 53 (range 16-79) years. 12 procedures (35.3 percent) had one endoscopist and 22 (64.7 percent) procedures had two. The overall diagnostic input from DBE was 73.3 percent (22 of 30 patients). A positive diagnosis was achieved in 19 patients: jejunal gastrointestinal stromal tumour (GIST) (one), jejunal sarcoma (one), jejunal adenocarcinoma (one), duodenal adenocarcinoma (one), malignant lymphangioma (one), eosinophilic enteritis (one), pseudomembranous ileitis (one), tuberculous ileitis (one), jejunitis/ileitis (seven), lymphangiectasia attributed to relapsed Non-Hodgkins lymphoma (one), combination of angiodysplastic lesions and apthous jejunal/ileal lesions (one), and focal villous atrophy (two). Small intestinal pathology was excluded in three patients with abnormal computed tomography (CT) findings. Endoscopy time for antegrade DBE was 46.1 (+/- 20.1) minutes and for retrograde DBE was 70.8 (+/- 11.0) minutes. The findings of WCE correlated with DBE findings in nine of 12 (75 percent) patients. Apart from the first three DBE procedures, all subsequent cases were performed without fluoroscopy. When stratified into antegrade and retrograde DBEs respectively, procedural duration, sedative use and diagnostic yield were comparable for one and two endoscopist DBEs. No complications were recorded.
Conclusion Our early experience with DBE shows it to be safe and effective in imaging the small intestine, and it may soon become a standard mode of investigation for the gastroenterologist.
Keywords: double balloon enteroscopy, obscure gastrointestinal bleeding, small intestinal disorders, wireless capsule endoscopy
Singapore Med J 2007; 48(1): 50–60