From the News 5 Medical Team, no one looks forward to having a colonoscopy, but now new technology is offering an alternative to the test. It is a Pill camera (Pill Cam), that a person swallows, and it takes pictures all through the digestive tract and down into the colon. The technology is only available at 17 medical centers across the country, including the University of South Alabama. The whole procedure takes about ten hours. The patient has to go through the traditional bowel prep, and then waits at the hospital until the Pill Cam is passed, about ten hours later.
Dr. Jack DiPalma says it is 80 percent as effective as a traditional colonoscopy. He has only used the Pill Cam twice at USA, and got very clear results. He says, “This pill is an alternative to colonoscopy. As we look around the country, only about 50% of the people who are eligible for colon cancer screening have actually had the test with colonoscopy. So, this an alternative for those who don’t want to do colonoscopy.”
The Pill Cam colon test is not covered by insurance yet. The patient has to pay $1750 out-of-pocket. If you would like to learn more, Contact the USA Digestive Health Center.