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Am J Gastroenterol. 2006 Sep;101(9):2011-5. Epub 2006 Jul 18.

Diagnostic yield and therapeutic impact of double-balloon enteroscopy in a large cohort of patients with obscure gastrointestinal bleeding.

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Department of Gastroenterology, Ruijin Hospital, Shanghai Second Medical University, Shanghai, China.



Double-balloon enteroscopy (DBE) is a novel endoscopic technique developed to investigate small bowel disease. There are limited available data on its impact in the diagnosis and management of obscure gastrointestinal bleeding (OGIB). The aim of this study was to evaluate the diagnostic yield and therapeutic impact of DBE in the management of patients with OGIB.


This study is a retrospective analysis of patients referred to our hospital from December 2003 to January 2005 for the investigation of overt or occult OGIB who underwent DBE after negative upper endoscopy and colonoscopy. Demographic, clinical, procedural, and outcome data were collected for analysis.


One hundred fifty-two patients (73 women and 79 men) were studied, with a mean age of 48.2 yr. Seventeen patients presented with occult OGIB while 135 patients had overt OGIB. A total of 191 DBEs was performed. Antegrade and retrograde approaches were performed in 60 and 53 patients, respectively, and 39 patients had a combination of both routes. DBE demonstrated a potential bleeding site in 115 (75.7%) patients (102 overt, 13 occult). The more common abnormalities detected were small bowel tumors (39.1%) and angioectasia (30.4%). DBE altered management in 83.5% of patients with positive findings. Follow-up was obtained on 119 patients (mean 16 months, range 8-23 months). Of the 95 patients with follow-up and a positive DBE finding, 85 (89%) had no further rebleeding. The procedure was well tolerated with 23 patients (15.1%) experiencing mild self-limited bleeding during the procedure.


DBE appears to have a high diagnostic yield and therapeutic impact in patients with OGIB with previously negative upper endoscopy and colonoscopy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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