Narrow-band imaging in the diagnosis of colorectal mucosal lesions: a pilot study

Endoscopy. 2004 Dec;36(12):1094-8. doi: 10.1055/s-2004-826040.


Background and study aims: A newly developed narrow-band imaging (NBI) technique, in which modified optical filters were used in the light source of a video endoscope system, was applied during colonoscopy in a clinical setting. This pilot study evaluated the clinical feasibility of the NBI system for evaluating colorectal lesions.

Patients and methods: A total of 43 colorectal lesions in 34 patients were included in the study. The quality of visualization of colorectal lesions and the accuracy of differentiation between neoplastic and non-neoplastic lesions using the NBI system were evaluated in comparison with results from conventional colonoscopy and with chromoendoscopy.

Results: For pit pattern delineation, NBI was superior to conventional endoscopy (P < 0.001), but inferior to chromoendoscopy (P < 0.05). NBI achieved better visualization of the mucosal vascular network and of the hue of lesions than conventional endoscopy (P < 0.05). However there was no significant difference between NBI and chromoendoscopy in differentiating neoplastic from non-neoplastic lesions (both techniques had a sensitivity of 100 % and a specificity 75 %). This was better than the results of conventional colonoscopy (sensitivity 83 %, specificity 44 %; P < 0.05 for specificity).

Conclusions: These results suggest that in the examination of colonic lesions the NBI system provides imaging features additional to those of both conventional endoscopy and chromoendoscopy. For distinguishing neoplasms from non-neoplastic lesions, NBI was equivalent to chromoendoscopy.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Colonoscopes*
  • Colonoscopy / methods*
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Coloring Agents
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted / instrumentation*
  • Indigo Carmine
  • Intestinal Mucosa / pathology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pilot Projects
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Sensitivity and Specificity


  • Coloring Agents
  • Indigo Carmine