Ensure preparation and capsule endoscopy: A two-center prospective study

Eva Niv*, Baruch Ovadia, Yulia Ron, Ervin Santo, Elisabeth Mahajna, Zamir Halpern, Zvi Fireman

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


AIM: To compare small bowel (SB) cleanliness and capsule endoscopy (CE) image quality following Ensure®, polyethylene glycol (PEG) and standard preparations. METHODS: A preparation protocol for CE that is both efficacious and acceptable to patients remains elusive. Considering the physiological function of the SB as a site for the digestion and absorption of food and not as a stool reservoir, preparation consisting of a liquid, fiber-free formula ingested one day before a CE study might have an advantage over other kinds of preparations. We conducted a prospective, blind-topreparation, two-center study that compared four types of preparations. The participants' demographic and clinical data were collected. Gastric and SB transit times were calculated. The presence of bile in the duodenum was scored by a single, blinded-to-preparation gastroenterologist expert in CE, as was cleanliness within the proximal, middle and distal part of the SB. A four-point scale was used (grade 1 = no bile or residue, grade 4 ≥ 90% of lumen full of bile or residual material). RESULTS: The 198 consecutive patients who were referred to CE studies due to routine medical reasons were divided into four groups. They all observed a 12-h overnight fast before undergoing CE. Throughout the 24 h preceding the fast, control group 1 (n = 45 patients) ate light unrestricted meals, control group 2 (n = 81) also ate light meals but free of fruits and vegetables, the PEG group (n = 50) ate unrestricted light meals and ingested the PEG preparation, and the Ensure group (n = 22) ingested only the Ensure formula. Preparation with Ensure improved the visualization of duodenal mucosa (a score of 1.76) by decreasing the bile content compared to preparation with PEG (a score of 2.9) (P = 0.053). Overall, as expected, there was less residue and stool in the proximal part of the SB than in the middle and distal parts in all groups. The total score of cleanliness throughout the length of the SB showed some benefit for Ensure (a score of 1.8) over control group 2 (a score of 2) (P = 0.06). The cleanliness grading of the proximal and distal parts of the SB was similar in all four groups (P = 0.6 for both). The cleanliness in the middle part of the SB in the PEG (a score of 1.8) and Ensure groups (a score of 1.7) was equally better than that of control group 2 (a score of 2.1) (P = 0.057 and P = 0.07, respectively). All 50 PEG patients had diarrhea as an anticipated side effect, compared with only one patient in the Ensure group. CONCLUSION: Preparation with Ensure, a liquid, fiber-free formula has advantages over standard and PEG preparations, with significantly fewer side effects than PEG.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1264-1270
Number of pages7
JournalWorld Journal of Gastroenterology
Issue number8
StatePublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Capsule endoscopy
  • Ensure
  • Fiber-free diet
  • Image quality
  • Polyethylene glycol
  • Preparation


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