Korean J Gastrointest Endosc.  2010 Dec;41(6):329-337.

The Role of Endoscopy in Obscure Gastrointestinal Bleeding

  • 1Department of Internal Medicine, Hanyang University College of Medicine, Guri, Korea. cseun@hanyang.ac.kr


Obscure gastrointestinal bleeding (OGIB) is defined as occult or overt bleeding of unknown origin that persists or recurs after an initial negative endoscopic evaluation by gastroscopy or colonoscopy. Most of these problems occur in the small bowel, and it is not an uncommon condition encountered by gastroenterologists, accounting for approximately 5% of all GIB. Traditional endoscopic techniques, including push enteroscopy, have a limited role in diagnosing patients with OGIB because of the inaccessibility of a large part of the small bowel using an endoscopic procedure. The recent introduction of new enteroscopic modalities including capsule endoscopy (CE) and double balloon enteroscopy have allowed mucosal visualization of the entire small bowel, revolutionizing the diagnosis and treatment of patients with OGIB. The respective roles of CE and deep enteroscopy in patients with OGIB are discussed in this review.


Obscure gastrointestinal bleeding; Capsule endoscopy; Deep enteroscopy
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