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Preparing for Capsule Endoscopy

A capsule endoscopy is safest and most effective when the stomach is empty. Patients should not eat or drink anything, including water, for about 12 hours before ingesting the capsule.* Some regular medications may also need to be adjusted or stopped for a short time before ingestion. Patients should talk to their providers about all prescription and over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements they are taking. Providers should also be made aware of pacemakers or defibrillators, previous abdominal surgeries, and any previous history of bowel obstructions, inflammatory bowel disease, or adhesions. Some providers may also require their patients to do a bowel prep or cleansing before ingesting the capsule, as this improves visibility in the small intestine.

*Some preparations include purposefully drinking water alone in the time leading up to capsule ingestion in order to keep the small bowel washed clean of bile.vvvvvv