*EMBARGOED All research presented at the 2020 ACG Annual Scientific Meeting and Postgraduate Course is strictly embargoed until Monday, October 26, 2020, at 8:00 am EDT.
Oral 6 Video Capsule Endoscopy as First Procedure for Acute Gastrointestinal Bleeding: An Approach to Minimizing Exposure to SARS-CoV-2 and Conserving Resources
Author Insight from Shahrad Hakimian, MD, University of Massachusetts Medical Center
What’s new here and important for clinicians?
The COVID-19 pandemic has posed new challenges in the evaluation of patients with gastrointestinal bleeding. Therefore, new approaches are necessary to ensure the safety of patients and health care providers and to conserve valuable resources such as personal protective equipment. Recently, our group published a randomized controlled trial comparing a minimally invasive tool, a small capsule containing a video camera easily swallowed by the patient, as compared to the traditional approach of more invasive upper endoscopy and colonoscopy for localization of the source of bleeding. We showed that the video capsule can effectively localize the source of bleeding without compromising patient safety. We therefore used a similar approach during the Covid 19 pandemic with the use of video capsules as the first-line diagnostic modality in evaluation of gastrointestinal bleeding. Using this approach, we showed that the source of bleeding could be localized in a higher proportion of patients while saving a number of invasive procedures in more than half of our patients. This approached appeared to be safe and reliable and saved many patient encounters risking exposure.
What do patients need to know?
Video capsule endoscopy is a safe and effective alternative in the initial diagnostic evaluation of gastrointestinal bleeding during the Covid 19 pandemic to help localize the source of bleeding and reduce exposure to SARS-CoV-2 virus by reducing the number of invasive procedures necessary.
Shahrad Hakimian, MD, University of Massachusetts Medical Center
shahrad.hakimian [at] umassmemorial [dot] org
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