Value of the diving method for capsule endoscopy in the examination of small-intestinal disease: a prospective randomized controlled trial

Published:April 28, 2021DOI:

      Background and Aims

      Video capsule endoscopy (VCE) is limited by poor image quality and incomplete small-bowel transit. This study was designed to evaluate the diving method for VCE in the examination of small-intestinal disease.


      From July 2017 to September 2017, eligible patients were randomly assigned to 2 groups, the diving group and the control group. For the diving group, 500 mL of water was administered every hour when the capsule reached the small bowel. The primary outcomes were image quality and positive findings. Secondary outcomes were the completion rate of examination, gastric transit time (GTT), small-bowel transit time (SBTT), lesion detection rate, adverse events, and patient satisfaction.


      One hundred forty patients were included. The scores of endoscopic images in the proximal third and middle third of the small bowel in the diving group were significantly higher than that in the control group (3.47 ± .60 vs 3.11 ± .63 [P = .007] and 3.24 ± .59 vs 2.78 ± .74 [P = .002], respectively). The positive findings in the distal third of the small bowel were significantly different between the 2 groups (P = .005). The completion rate in the diving group was significantly higher (92.19% vs 76.32%, respectively; P = .012). The GTT, SBTT, and lesion detection rate were similar in 2 groups (P = .282, .067, and .577, respectively). No discomfort or adverse events were reported except for a few cases of frequent urination.


      The diving method for VCE examination effectively improves the endoscopic view in the proximal and middle thirds of the small bowel and the positive findings in the distal small intestine and increases the completion rate. (Clinical trial registration number: ChiCTR-RDR-17011823.)

      Graphical abstract


      GTT (gastric transit time), IDA (iron deficiency anemia), OGIB (obscure GI bleeding), PEG (polyethylene glycol), SBTT (small-bowel transit time), VCE (video capsule endoscopy)
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