Balloon Enteroscopy

Procedure Questions

What is Balloon Enteroscopy?

Balloon Enteroscopy utilizes balloons to anchor and advance a long endoscope into middle sections of the digestive tract, such as the small intestine. This allows for examination and therapy of hard-to-reach sections.

Procedure Bullet Points

Balloon Enteroscopy:

  • Is performed in-office
  • Is well-tolerated
  • Is low-risk
  • May involve sedation

Your doctor will begin the Balloon Enteroscopy procedure by passing an endoscope into either your upper or lower gastrointestinal tract.

The endoscope moves deep into the GI tract by inflating and deflating either one balloon (Single Balloon Enteroscopy) or two balloons (Double Balloon Enteroscopy) to pull back a section of the bowel, allowing the endoscope to move forward.

Your doctor may recommend a balloon enteroscopy to diagnose or treat:

  • Bleeding of the small intestine
  • Ulcers and Lesions
  • Strictures of the small intestine and middle GI tract
  • Polyps or masses
  • Abnormal tissue
  • Crohn’s when suspected
  • Or remove foreign objects

Your doctor will give you instructions to prepare for the procedure. Most likely, you will be asked to fast for at least 4-8 hours beforehand to ensure an empty stomach.

Your doctor may also advise you to undergo special preparation. If so, they will guide you through a cleansing routine. Your cleansing routine may consist of:

  • 1-2 enema
  • A limited diet consisting of clear liquids
  • Consuming a special cleansing solution
  • Or laxatives

It’s important to follow your cleansing routine carefully, as any material remaining in the colon or rectum can affect the accuracy of the procedure.
Inform your doctor of:

  • Any medication that you take regularly, especially;
    • aspirin products
    • arthritis medications
    • blood thinners (such as Warfarin or Heparin)
    • Clopidogrel
    • insulin
  • Any known allergies to medication
  • Any medical conditions that will require special attention, such as;
    • diabetes
    • heart conditions
    • lung conditions
    • any other major conditions

You’ll need to plan for ride home from the office as it is not advised for patients to drive for the remainder of the day due to effects from the medication.
It’s important to follow all of your doctor’s instructions.

Your doctor may offer you:

  • A sedative to help you relax
  • Pain medication to relieve discomfort
  • A mouthguard if the procedure starts in the upper GI tract

You may feel:

  • Discomfort from the endoscope
  • Bloating or cramping from air pumped into the GI tract
  • Slight pain or discomfort if a tissue sample is taken or a polyp is removed

You’ll be taken to a room to rest after the procedure where you’ll be monitored until your sedatives begin to wear off.

Once home, You may feel:

  • Bloating
  • Gas
  • Cramping
  • Sore Throat

You should take it easy for the rest of the day after your endoscopy.

You should have a ride prepared as the sedatives may impair your judgement.

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