Status evaluation: enteroscopy

Gastrointest Endosc. Nov-Dec 1991;37(6):673-7. doi: 10.1016/s0016-5107(91)70907-3.


Enteroscopy is a method to examine the small bowel mucosa beyond the reach of standard upper endoscopes. In practice it has primarily been used to search for a bleeding lesion in patients where one is not detected by conventional means. Such patients constitute only a small percentage of those who bleed (15,20). Experience is greatest with push enteroscopy. Examination of the distal duodenum and proximal jejunum using a standard or pediatric colonoscope is practical, appears to be safe and provides a satisfactory diagnostic and therapeutic yield in experienced hands. Longer designated push enteroscopes are under investigation. Sonde type enteroscopes can be passed to the ileum in most cases. A cause for bleeding can be detected in approximately one-quarter to one-third of individuals with minimal morbidity. Certain technical problems limit their efficacy and their role in the evaluation of patients with bleeding has not yet been clearly defined.

MeSH terms

  • Endoscopes, Gastrointestinal
  • Endoscopy, Gastrointestinal*
  • Gastrointestinal Hemorrhage / diagnosis
  • Humans
  • Intestine, Small*
  • Technology Assessment, Biomedical*