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Wednesday, 5 February 2014

EU approves medical use of pill with a camera to study the colon

A more friendly and discreet method for one of the most feared examinations in medicine is coming: American regulators approved a camera that is the size of a snack that help you see the large intestine of patients who have difficulty traditional colonoscopies.

The Given Imaging swallowable camera is designed to help doctors locate polyps and other early signs of colon cancer. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) had approved the device for patients who have problems with the other procedures, considered shameful, it involves reviewing the colon using a tiny camera on the tip of a flexible hose of a meter long.

Israeli technology company, developed from missile defense systems, using a battery-powered camera for shooting high speed while slowly moves through the intestinal tract for eight hours. Images are transmitted and recorded by a device placed in the patient's waist and are then checked by the doctor.

Although wireless imaging system of Given Imaging sound like science fiction, actually has more than a decade of existence. In 2001, the company received FDA approval for a similar device used to view the small intestine.

At that time, analysts expected that the method of Given Imaging a direct competitor to the traditional colonoscopy again. However, the company studies found that the images taken by the mini-camera are not as clear as the process in the office. As a result, the company has sought a more limited market for PillCam: patients who have difficulty in traditional colonoscopies.

The FDA approved the PillCam Colon for patients who have undergone incomplete colonoscopy. The company estimates that approximately 750,000 patients in the United States can not be subjected each year to complete the study due to anatomical issues, previous surgeries or other conditions of the colon.

Even with this limited indication, analysts estimate that the new camera pill could generate sales of more than $ 60 million in North America by 2019 as technology improves. Debbie Wang, an analyst at MorningStar, believes that the company has cleverly positioned the device as another tool in the kit of gastrointestinal specialist, rather than as a direct competitor.

"The administration understands Given that traditional colonoscopy is now central to the gastroenterologist," Wang explained "why they would not do anything that will position this device as a substitute."

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