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Concept: Colonoscopy


PURPOSE: To assess the relative efficacy of empiric gastroduodenal artery (GDA) embolization in reducing recurrent hemorrhage compared to image-guided targeted embolization. METHODS: Data were retrospectively collected for consecutive patients who had catheter angiography for major upper gastrointestinal hemorrhage from May 2008 to November 2010 (n = 40). The total number of cases were divided into two main groups according to angiographic findings: those that demonstrated a site of hemorrhage on catheter angiography (group 1, n = 13), and those where the site of hemorrhage was not identified on catheter angiography (group 2, n = 27). Group 2 was then further divided into patients who received empiric embolization (group 2a, n = 20) and those who had no embolization performed after angiography (group 2b, n = 7). RESULTS: The technical and clinical success rates for embolization in groups 1 and 2a were, respectively, 100 vs. 95 %, and 85 vs. 80 %. There was no statistical significance in the recurrent hemorrhage rate, reintervention rate, or 30 day mortality between targeted and empiric embolization groups. There were no complications attributed to embolization within this study cohort. CONCLUSION: Cases of duodenal-related major upper gastrointestinal hemorrhage where no embolization is performed have poor outcome. Empiric embolization of the GDA in patients with major upper gastrointestinal hemorrhage refractory to endoscopic treatment appears to be a safe and effective treatment, with low reintervention rates and good clinical outcome comparable to patients where the site of hemorrhage is localized and embolized with computed tomographic angiography or catheter angiography and embolized.

Concepts: Cohort study, Surgery, Colonoscopy, Gastroenterology, Computed tomography angiography, Angiography, Esophagogastroduodenoscopy, Upper gastrointestinal bleeding


The treatment of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)-ulcerative colitis (UC) and Crohn’s disease (CD)-has evolved beyond surgery with the introduction of biologic agents, primarily antibodies against mediators of inflammation and cell attraction. Anti-tumor necrosis factor (TNF) agents have been the first line treatment for moderate to severe ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease for more than 15 years. During that time much has been learnt about how best to use these agents. This review will assess the evidence on how to optimize the use of anti-TNF agents; when and how to start treatment; how to monitor treatment and when to de-escalate it; and the potential adverse effects of these drugs. New and emerging treatments such as anti-attractants, anti-interleukins, and Janus kinase (JAK) inhibitors will also be discussed.

Concepts: Immune system, Inflammation, Biopsy, Ulcerative colitis, Crohn's disease, Colonoscopy, Gastroenterology, Inflammatory bowel disease


Abstract Objective. Colonoscopy is the method of choice for examining patients with lower gastrointestinal symptoms. The procedure is, however, in many cases, associated with pain and impaired compliance. Magnetic endoscopic imaging (MEI) generates a three-dimensional image of the colonoscope on a computer screen which may enable the colonoscopist to avoid looping, and consequently improve patient satisfaction. Material and methods. In this randomized controlled trial, 200 outpatients referred to colonoscopy at Østfold Hospital Trust, Fredrikstad, Norway, were included. Patients were randomized to either the standard arm (using fluoroscopy on demand, n = 100), or the MEI arm (n = 100). End points were time to cecum, subjective pain experiences, and use of sedation or analgesics. Results. Out of a total of 200 patients, 54% were men. However, no significant differences between the groups according to gender were found. Fluoroscopy was applied in 23% of the cases in the standard group. Use of MEI was associated with decreased time to cecum (p < 0.05), decreased pain scores (Visual Analogue Scale, p < 0.05), decreased need of analgesia (p < 0.01), and decreased amount of administered midazolam and pethidin (p < 0.05 in both). Conclusions. MEI during colonoscopy was associated with decreased pain and less on-demand requests for sedation and analgesia. In addition, the use of MEI reduced the cecal intubation time. Consequently the implementation of magnetic endoscopic imaging in the endoscopy suits may be beneficial, particularly in the clinically difficult cases.

Concepts: Randomized controlled trial, Colonoscopy, Opioid, Bronchoscopy, Esophagogastroduodenoscopy, Endoscopy, Sigmoidoscopy, Cecum


GOALS:: To evaluate sources of upper gastrointestinal bleeding (UGIB) at an urban US hospital and compare them to sources at the same center 20 years ago, and to assess clinical outcomes related to source of UGIB. BACKGROUND:: Recent studies suggest changes in causes and outcomes of UGIB. STUDY:: Consecutive patients with hematemesis, melena, and/or hematochezia undergoing upper endoscopy with an identified source at LA County+USC Medical Center from January 2005 to June 2011 were identified retrospectively. RESULTS:: Mean age of the 1929 patients was 52 years; 75% were male. A total of 1073 (55%) presented with hematemesis, 809 (42%) with melena alone, and 47 (2%) with hematochezia alone. The most common causes were ulcers in 654 patients (34%), varices in 633 (33%), and erosive esophagitis in 156 (8%), compared with 43%, 33%, and 2% in 1991. During hospitalization, 207 (10.7%) patients required repeat endoscopy for UGIB (10.6% for both ulcers and varices) and 129 (6.7%) died (5.2% for ulcers; 9.2% for varices). On multivariate analysis, hematemesis (OR=1.38; 95% CI, 1.04-1.88) and having insurance (OR=1.44; 95% CI, 1.07-1.94) were associated with repeat endoscopy for UGIB. Varices (OR=1.53; 95% CI, 1.05-2.22) and having insurance (OR=4.53; 95% CI, 2.84-7.24) were associated with mortality. CONCLUSION:: Peptic ulcers decreased modestly over 2 decades, whereas varices continue as a common cause of UGIB at an urban hospital serving lower socioeconomic patients. Inpatient mortality, but not rebleeding requiring endoscopy, was higher with variceal than nonvariceal UGIB, indicating patients with variceal UGIB remain at risk of death from decompensation of underlying illness even after successful control of bleeding.

Concepts: Hospital, Colonoscopy, Gastroenterology, Peptic ulcer, Esophagogastroduodenoscopy, Upper gastrointestinal bleeding, Hematemesis, Melena


OBJECTIVE: We propose a diverticular disease severity score (DDSS) based on CT colonography (CTC) findings. METHODS: Seventy-nine patients (62 ± 14.5 years) underwent CTC after recovering from an episode of acute diverticulitis. Two independent readers classified each case using a four-point scale (DDSS), based on maximum sigmoid colon wall thickness (MSCWT) and minimum lumen diameter at CTC: 1 = MSCWT <3 mm, lumen diameter ≥15 mm; 2 = MSCWT 3-8 mm, lumen diameter ≥5 mm; 3 = MSCWT ≥8 mm, lumen diameter ≥5 mm; 4 = MSCWT ≥8 mm, lumen diameter <5 mm. Intra- and interobserver reproducibility was evaluated. Of 79 patients, 32 (40 %) underwent surgery after CTC; MSCWT was directly measured on the pathological specimen. RESULTS: Intra- and interobserver reproducibility of DDSS were almost perfect (k = 0.90-0.84). DDSS significantly correlated with the probability of surgery (P = 0.001). After surgery, histopathology revealed acute/chronic diverticular inflammation only in 29 cases, and superimposed sigmoid cancer (n = 2) or Crohn's disease (n = 1) in 3 patients with a DDSS of 4. MSCWT at histopathology correlated with DDSS (P = 0.008). CONCLUSION: DDSS is highly reproducible and correlates with pathological MSCWT. Nearly 1 in 3 patients with a DDSS of 4 had significant superimposed histopathology. CTC with DDSS can provide colorectal surgeons with valuable information. KEY POINTS: • A diverticular disease severity score (DDSS) based on CT colonography is proposed. • This DDSS is based on sigmoid colon wall thickness and lumen diameter. • High scores may be associated with relevant coexisting lesions. • A CTC-based DDSS may influence therapeutic decision-making.

Concepts: Surgery, Ulcerative colitis, Crohn's disease, Colon, Abdominal pain, Colonoscopy, Diverticulitis, Diverticulosis


Video capsule endoscopy (VCE) is being increasingly used to investigate small bowel pathology. It is the gold standard for obscure gastrointestinal bleeding and iron deficiency anemia. VCE has been in use since 2001 and indications for its use are expanding. VCE is also a useful diagnostic tool in small bowel Crohn’s disease, celiac disease, surveillance of polyps, small bowel malignancy and drug-induced small bowel injury. Although VCE is considered a safe and easy procedure, there are a few limitations. These include cost, capsule retention and inability to take a biopsy and perform any therapeutic maneuvers. Contraindications for VCE include pregnancy, patients with a swallowing disorder, history of previous abdominal surgery or concurrent abdomino-pelvic irradiation. This is an overview of VCE, its role and indications in clinical practice, potential complications and contraindications, as well as the ongoing and expected advances in the field.

Concepts: Medical terms, Crohn's disease, Colonoscopy, Gastroenterology, Small intestine, Bowel obstruction, Iron deficiency anemia, Malabsorption


Real-time optical diagnosis of colorectal polyps may lead to substantial time and cost savings and could potentially reduce complications associated with polypectomy. We prospectively assessed the utility of a novel narrow-band imaging (NBI) system with dual focus magnification (DF) in differentiating colorectal polyps in consecutive patients undergoing colonoscopy.

Concepts: Optics, Colorectal cancer, Ulcerative colitis, Colon, Colonoscopy, Colorectal polyp, Sigmoidoscopy, Focal length


Interactions between the enteric nervous system and the immune system are suggested to play an important role in the pathophysiology of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). This study aims to determine if chromogranin A (CgA), chromogranin B (CgB), and secretoneurin (SN) are detectable in feces (F) from patients with collagenous colitis (CC) and to compare the levels found in patients with ulcerative colitis (UC) and Crohn’s disease (CD) before and during treatment. Patients with CC (n = 12) were studied before and after 3, 7, 28, and 56 days of treatment. Patients with IBD (UC, n = 21; CD, n = 11) were studied before and after 28 and 56 days of treatment. Clinical data were recorded, and fecal samples were collected at each occasion. F-CgA, F-CgB, and F-SN were measured by RIA. Eleven patients with CC, 21 with UC, and 10 with CD achieved remission. On inclusion, CC patients had higher levels of F-CgA, F-CgB, and F-SN than patients with IBD and controls. Patients with IBD expressed markedly lower levels of F-SN than controls. During treatment, F-SN in CC patients decreased to control levels but remained low in IBD patients. No change was found in F-CgA or F-CgB in any of the groups. In conclusion, CgA, CgB, and SN are detectable in feces, and CC patients express higher values than patients with IBD and controls. During treatment, F-SN decreased to control levels in CC. These findings suggest that the enteric nervous system is clearly involved in the pathophysiology of CC.

Concepts: Immune system, Biopsy, Ulcerative colitis, Crohn's disease, Colonoscopy, Gastroenterology, Inflammatory bowel disease, Collagenous colitis


Data suggest dietary modification can improve clinical responses in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). The goal of this study was to determine the efficacy of an autoimmune protocol diet in patients with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.

Concepts: Biopsy, Ulcerative colitis, Crohn's disease, Colonoscopy, Gastroenterology, Inflammatory bowel disease, Autoimmune diseases, Helminthic therapy


The GEMINI long-term safety (LTS) study is a continuing phase 3 trial investigating the safety and efficacy of vedolizumab, an α4β7 integrin antagonist for ulcerative colitis (UC) and Crohn’s disease. We provide an interim analysis of efficacy in patients with UC.

Concepts: Ulcerative colitis, Crohn's disease, Colon, Colitis, Infliximab, Abdominal pain, Colonoscopy, Diarrhea