The goal was to describe the location of angioectasias within small bowel on capsule endoscopy and the utility of push enteroscopy versus deep enteroscopy in treatment of overt bleeding from these.
Overt bleeding from small bowel angioectasias is a clinical challenge. Thalidomide and octreotide can be difficult to prescribe and may not be effective. Endoscopy remains a mainstay of treatment for overt bleeding from angioectasias but data regarding the long-term efficacy of endoscopic therapy are limited. We sought to define the location of small bowel angioectasias using capsule endoscopy and review our outcomes for push and double-balloon enteroscopy.
We retrospectively reviewed all 428 capsule endoscopy studies from the Veterans Administration Hospital in West Haven, CT from 2005 to 2012. Location of angioectasias was evaluated using lead mapping and small bowel transit time.
We identified 69 patients with small bowel angioectasia. At least 66.8% of lesions were in duodenum or ligament of Treitz, with 78.3% within the first 25% of small bowel transit. Twenty-four patients underwent endoscopic treatment of overt bleeding from small bowel angioectasias. Thirty-three percent rebled requiring multiple procedures. Eight patients had 10 anterograde double-balloon examinations. Only 2 patients had both cessation of bleeding with double balloon and lesions outside the reach of push enteroscopy.
Push enteroscopy for bleeding angioectasias is effective in many patients. Deep enteroscopy may not benefit most patients as most angioectasias are proximal. Patients with deeper lesions tended to have multiple lesions and rebleeding despite deep enteroscopy.