top of page

Is intraoperative enteroscopy still relevant in small bowel disorders

Is intraoperative enteroscopy still relevant in small bowel disorders in the era of capsule endoscopy and device-assisted enteroscopy? Real-world experience from a tertiary care hospital

Pal P, Tandan M, Kulkarni S, Reddy PM, Ramchandani M, Sekaran A, Shetty MG, Rebala P, Rao GV, Reddy DN. Published Nov 2021, in the Journal of gastroenterology and hepatology.


Background and aim: With the advent of video capsule endoscopy (VCE) and device-assisted enteroscopy (DAE), the indication of intraoperative enteroscopy (IOE) has become limited due to reported high morbidity/mortality. Most of the earlier studies on IOE were small/from pre-VCE/DAE era. We aimed to evaluate the impact of IOE in management of small bowel disorders (SBD) in post-VCE/DAE era.

Methods: Patients with SBD undergoing IOE over last 15 years were evaluated retrospectively. Overall diagnostic/therapeutic yield, incremental diagnostic yield over preoperative investigations, and adverse events were noted. We also evaluated the number of cases in which IOE changed the management or guided surgical or endoscopic therapy. Rebleeding and recurrence were evaluated in patients with available follow-up data.

Results: A total of 89 patients (59 male, 9-82 years) were included in the study. Overall diagnostic and therapeutic yield were 92.1% and 85.4%, respectively. Common findings of IOE were benign ulcers/strictures (30.1%), vascular lesions (26%), diverticula (15.1%), and tumors (13.7%). A total of 49.4% (44/89), 36% (32/89), and 20.2% (18/89) underwent VCE, DAE, or both, respectively, before IOE. Incremental diagnostic yield over preoperative work-up was 31.5% (28/89), and IOE changed the management in 37.1% (33/89) patients. IOE was used to guide surgery/endotherapy in 39.3% (35/89) patients. Recurrent gastrointestinal bleed occurred in 21.2% (14/66) patients. Morbidity and mortality rates were 20.2% (18/89) and 3.4% (3/89), respectively.

Conclusions: Intraoperative enteroscopy remains an essential technique to evaluate SBD and can detect new and additional lesions even after extensive preoperative evaluation. IOE is useful in guiding therapy in preoperatively identified lesions and can change management in a substantial proportion of patients. Hence, IOE has a definitive role in post-VCE/DAE era in carefully selected patients with SBD.

Keywords: capsule endoscopy; device-assisted enteroscopy; intraoperative enteroscopy; small bowel endoscopy; small intestinal bleeding.


Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page