Evaluation of discomfort during colonoscopy with conventional and ultrathin colonoscopes in ulcerative colitis patients

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Abstract

Background and Aim:

In patients with ulcerative colitis (UC), colonoscopy is an essential procedure for evaluating mucosal damage, and treatment outcomes. A new flexible ultrathin colonoscope (PCF-PQ260) has been developed to readily pass through tortuous and narrow lesions of the colon and cause minimum patient discomfort. The objective of the present study was to evaluate the comfort and performance of this new type of scope in UC patients who underwent colonoscopy for estimation of mucosal inflammation, basically without sedation.

Methods:

In a prospective, single-center setting, among 107 UC patients who were to undergo colonoscopy, 84 eligible cases were randomly assigned to the new ultrathin flexible colonoscope, PCF-PQ260 (n = 42) or to a conventional colonoscope, PCF-Q260A (n = 42). Main outcome measure was patient pain level determined by visual analogue scale (VAS) with 0 = none, and 100 = extremely painful. Other outcomes were cecal intubation time, rate of complete intubation (to reach the cecum) and rate of procedural complications.

Results:

VAS score was significantly lower in the new-scope group as compared with the conventional-scope group: mean ± SD, median (range): 19.3 ± 16.9, 14 (0–62) vs 32.0 ± 21.6, 31.8 (0–100, P = 0.005). However, cecal intubation rate (97.6%) and time (4 min) were similar in the two groups. There was no procedure-related serious complication in either group.

Conclusion:

The findings indicated that the flexible ultrathin colonoscope PCF-PQ260 has significantly better tolerability in UC patients compared to a conventional colonoscope.

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