Open-Access Single Balloon Enteroscopy: A Tertiary Care Experience

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To compare single balloon enteroscopy (SBE) between patients seen in consultation by a member of our gastroenterology team with those performed as open-access cases.


Retrospective study of all patients who underwent SBE at a single tertiary care center from April 2008 to January 2012. Open- and closed-access procedures were compared in terms of diagnostic and therapeutic yield, adverse events, and procedural success.


A total of 125 SBEs were performed on 125 patients. The mean age was 63.1 (53% men) years. In all, 43 procedures were performed open access and 82 after face-to-face consultation. Indications included anemia/gastrointestinal bleeding (110), abdominal pain (8), and other (7). Diagnostic yield for open- and closed-access procedures was 53% and 60%, respectively (P = 0.501) and therapeutic yield was 37% and 52%, respectively (P = 0.11). Overall technical success was 91% with no difference between the groups (P = 0.27). There were no major adverse events in either group.


SBE can be performed as an open-access procedure without compromise to safety or diagnostic yield.

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