Usefulness of a Small-Caliber, Variable-Stiffness Colonoscope as a Backup in Patients with Difficult or Incomplete Colonoscopy

Horiuchi, Akira; Nakayama, Yoshiko; Kajiyama, Masashi; Fujii, Hideyasu; Tanaka, Naoki
October 2004
American Journal of Gastroenterology;Oct2004, Vol. 99 Issue 10, p1936
Academic Journal
OBJECTIVES: Although variable-stiffness colonoscopes have been developed, difficult or incomplete colonoscopies occasionally occur. The aim of this study was to evaluate the usefulness of a small-caliber, variable-stiffness colonoscope (scVSC) as a backup in patients with difficult or incomplete colonoscopies.METHODS: First, we retrospectively reviewed the cecal intubation rate of colonoscopies in which an adult standard colonoscope (AC) was immediately switched to an scVSC in all patients in whom a colonoscopy with an AC was incomplete. Second, 374 consecutive patients were randomized to undergo colonoscopy with a pediatric variable-stiffness colonoscope (PVSC, n= 123), AC (n= 125), or scVSC (n= 126). The scVSC was used by the same endoscopist to reattempt colonoscopy immediately after colonoscopy with a PVSC or an AC had been assessed as difficult or incomplete. The cecal intubation rate and time and the ancillary maneuvers used were evaluated.RESULTS: Fifty-two (2.5%) of the 2,056 attempted colonoscopies with an AC did not reach the cecum. Fifty-one of the 52 patients (98.1%) had complete colonoscopies after the switch from the AC to the scVSC. The initial intubation rate and time were not statistically different among the groups: PVSC, 95% and 6.8 min; AC, 91% and 7.5 min; and scVSC, 98% and 8.2 min. Cecal intubation was achieved in all five patients (100%) and in 10 out of 11 (91%) patients, respectively, after the PVSC or AC was switched to the scVSC.CONCLUSIONS: The completion rate markedly improved after switching from an AC or PVSC to an scVSC in difficult or incomplete colonoscopies, although the scVSC does not appear to offer any distinct advantage over the AC or PVSC for routine colonoscopies.(Am J Gastroenterol 2004;99:1936-1940)


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