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Small bowel capsule endoscopy and portal hypertensive enteropathy in cirrhotic patients: results from a tertiary referral centre

Konstantinos J. Dabos, Diana E. Yung, Leonidas Bartzis, Peter C. Hayes, John N. Plevris, Anastasios Koulaouzidis


Background and rationale. Portal hypertensive enteropathy (PHE) remains difficult to diagnose in patients with cirrhosis and portal hypertension. Limited test choices exist for the inspection of the small bowel in these patients. Small bowel capsule endoscopy (SBCE) is ideal in this situation but rarely performed. We aimed to determine the prevalence of PHE using SBCE in a cirrhotic patient population and correlate its presence with clinical and CT imaging findings. Material and methods. We retrospectively analysed data from cirrhotic patients who underwent SBCE at our unit. Studies were evaluated for the presence of cirrhosis-related findings in the oesophagus, stomach and small-bowel. The relationships between PHE and patients’ clinical characteristics were evaluated. Results. 53 patients with cirrhosis underwent SCBE. We used PillCam®SB on 36 patients and MiroCam® capsule on 17. Thirty patients were referred for iron deficiency anaemia, 15 for obscure gastrointestinal bleeding, and 4 for other indications. Four data sets were not available for review, leaving 49 patients. Mean age was 61.19 ± 14.54 years (M/F = 27/22). Six SBCE examinations were incomplete. Thirty three patients had evidence of portal hypertensive gastropathy (PHG) and 17 had evidence of oesophageal varices. In total, 29 patients had SCBE evidence of PHE (57%). 28/29 (96.5%) patients with PHE had also evidence of PHG. 13/17 (76.4%) patients with oesophageal varices had also evidence of PHE. Conclusions. The prevalence of PHE in our study was 57%. SBCE is a useful tool in evaluating PHE in cirrhotic patients irrespective of aetiology.

Key words. Capsule endoscopy, Small-bowel, Portal hypertension, Enteropathy-Varices, Cirrhosis, Obscure GI bleeding

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The Official Journal of the Mexican Association of Hepatology, the Latin-American Association for the Study of the Liver and the Canadian Association for the Study of the Liver

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