New technology is allowing doctors to diagnose gastrointestinal disorders easier than ever before. The SmartPill GI Monitoring System is a capsule monitoring device that is ingested by the patient at the doctor’s office. The patient is then fitted with the wireless data receiver. The receiver can be attached to the patient’s belt for easy mobility. The SmartPill capsule, which is about the size of a large multivitamin, can be easily worked through the gastrointestinal tract. While on its “travels” the SmartPill collects data such as pressure, pH and temperature levels, which are sent to the wireless receiver. This data is then used by the doctor to determine the disorder that the patient is suffering.
The SmartPill procedure is intended to replace costly and invasive procedures to determine the cause of gastrointestinal symptoms. Patients who have experienced unexplained vomiting, stomach spasms or bloating can relax now that they do not have to undergo surgery.
Diabetics in particular are more likely to need this diagnosing system. Due to their different digestive systems, diabetics are more prone to gastrointestinal tract disorders. The SmartPill system will be able to help doctors better evaluate and diagnose their diabetic patients.
The SmartPill GI Monitoring System will be particularly helpful in diagnosing disorders such as gastroparesis, which is delayed stomach emptying. Gastroparesis affects millions of Americans every year, especially those with existing disorders such as diabetes or irritable bowel syndrome.
For diabetics, gastroparesis makes controlling blood sugar levels more difficult, as a delay in digestion causes blood glucose levels to rapidly rise when food enters the small intestine. This causes glucose levels to be erratic and difficult to control.
Once the patient’s SmartPill results have been examined, doctors can more effectively diagnose the symptoms, and more precisely prescribe what is needed. For gastroparesis, doctors often prescribe Motilium, or its generic equivalent, domperidone. Domperidone, a dopamine antagonist, works on the gastrointestinal tract by both promoting gastric movement and easing gastroparesis symptoms. These effects are created by works by blocking the action of a chemical messenger in the brain which causes the feeling of nausea and vomiting, as well as by increasing the movement or contractions of the stomach and intestines, allowing food to move more easily through the stomach.