Background: Although the diagnostic and therapeutic values of double balloon endoscopy (DBE) have been investigated, the subjective tolerability to DBE has not been assessed. We aimed to evaluate patients' tolerability to DBE.
Methods: We prospectively enrolled patients who underwent DBE. For the comparison of tolerability to DBE with that to esophagogastroduodenoscopy (EGD) and colonoscopy, those who had not undergone EGD nor colonoscopy were excluded. A total of 52 patients were included. All procedures were performed under conscious sedation with midazolam with or without pethidine. Patients' tolerability to DBE, EGD, and colonoscopy was assessed through an interview with a questionnaire using a 10-point Likert scale.
Results: A total of 36 patients underwent both antegrade DBE and EGD under conscious sedation. The level of abdominal pain during procedures, the level of post-procedural abdominal discomfort, and the proportion of patients with persistent abdominal discomfort until the next morning were higher in antegrade DBE. However, when analyzed in 16 patients who had good quality of sedation, the differences in the level of abdominal pain during procedures and the persistent abdominal discomfort until the next morning disappeared. A total of 23 patients underwent both retrograde DBE and colonoscopy under conscious sedation. Tolerability parameters were not different between retrograde DBE and colonoscopy. Serious complications, including hemodynamic instability, did not occur during all procedures.
Conclusion: Patients tolerated DBE well. DBE may be performed as comfortably as EGD and colonoscopy if the quality of sedation is good enough.