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Capsule Endoscopy

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Jun 5, 2024.

What do I need to know about a capsule endoscopy?

Capsule endoscopy is a procedure to take pictures of the inside of your small bowel (intestine). The pictures may show if you have growths, swelling, or bleeding in your intestine. You may need this procedure if you have symptoms such as blood in your bowel movements or chronic stomach pain.

How do I prepare for a capsule endoscopy?

You may need medicines to help clean out your intestines before the procedure. Ask about directions for eating and drinking before your procedure. You may need to stop eating or drinking 12 hours before the procedure. Do not smoke for 24 hours before the procedure. Tell your healthcare provider what medicines you take and ask him or her when they should be stopped before the procedure.

What will happen during a capsule endoscopy?

What will happen after a capsule endoscopy?

The capsule usually comes out in your bowel movement within 3 days, but may take longer. It is okay to flush the recorder. You can remove the sensors. Return the recorder to your healthcare provider as directed. A healthcare provider will view the pictures of your small bowel and look for any problems.

What are the risks of a capsule endoscopy?

You may have stomach pain during your procedure. The capsule may not come out in your bowel movement. The pictures taken by the capsule may not be clear. The pictures may not show the cause of your symptoms. You may need another endoscopy procedure. The capsule may get trapped in your body if your intestines are narrow or blocked. You may need surgery to remove the capsule.

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your healthcare providers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.