Training in small-bowel capsule endoscopy: assessing and defining competency

Gastrointest Endosc. 2013 Oct;78(4):617-22. doi: 10.1016/j.gie.2013.05.010. Epub 2013 Jul 25.


Background: Minimum training for capsule endoscopy (CE) is based on societal guidelines and expert opinion. Objective measures of competence are lacking.

Objectives: Our objectives were to (1) establish structured CE training curriculum during a gastroenterology fellowship, (2) develop a formalized assessment tool to evaluate CE competency, (3) prospectively analyze trainee CE competency, (4) define metrics for trainee CE competence by using comparative data from CE staff, and (5) determine the correlation between CE competence and previous endoscopy experience.

Design: Single-center, prospective analysis over 6 years.

Setting: Tertiary academic center.

Subjects: Gastroenterology fellows and CE staff.

Interventions: Structured CE training was implemented with supervised CE interpretation. Capsule Competency Test (CapCT) was developed and data were collected on the number of CEs, upper endoscopies, colonoscopies, and push enteroscopies performed.

Main outcome measurements: Trainee competence defined as CapCT score 90% or higher of the mean staff score.

Results: A total of 39 fellows completed CE training and CapCT. Fellows were grouped according to number of completed CE interpretations: 10 or fewer (n = 13), 11 to 20 (n = 19), and 21 to 35 (n = 7). Eight CE staff completed CapCT with a mean score of 91%. Mean scores for trainees with fewer than 10, 11 to 20, and 21 to 35 CE interpretations were 79%, 79%, and 85%, respectively. A significant difference was seen between staff and fellow scores with 10 or fewer and 11 to 20 interpretations (P < .001). No correlation was found between trainee scores and previous endoscopy experience.

Limitations: Single center.

Conclusion: Using a structured CE training curriculum, we defined competency in CE interpretation by using the CapCT. Based on these findings, trainees should complete more than 20 CE studies before assessing competence, regardless of previous endoscopy experience.

Keywords: ANOVA; Analysis of variance; CE; CapCT; Capsule Competency Test; capsule endoscopy.

MeSH terms

  • Capsule Endoscopy / education*
  • Capsule Endoscopy / standards
  • Clinical Competence / standards*
  • Curriculum / standards*
  • Fellowships and Scholarships / standards*
  • Gastroenterology / education*
  • Gastroenterology / standards
  • Humans
  • Intestine, Small*
  • Prospective Studies