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News

Glucagon facilitates colonoscopy and reduces patient discomfort

This month's European Journal of Gastroenterology & Hepatology evaluates the influence of glucagon on colonoscopy, and patient discomfort.

News image

Techniques and imaging technology in colonoscopy have steadily improved.

Dr Naoto Tamai re-evaluated the effectiveness of glucagon as an antispasmodic, which may facilitate smooth scope intubation and reduce patient discomfort during screening colonoscopy under current equipment settings.

A total of 70 patients undergoing colonoscopy under conscious sedation were randomized into 2 groups.

Group 1 included patients with intravenous administration of 1 mg glucagon, and Group 2 was a placebo group.

After colonoscopy, patients completed questionnaires on pain, abdominal fullness, and acceptance of future colonoscopy.

The team of doctors scored difficulty in scope manipulation by endoscopists, and times for cecal intubation, observation, and the number of polyps detected by colonoscopy were also recorded.

Polyp detection rates were not different between the groups
European Journal of Gastroenterology & Hepatology.

In addition, the researchers evaluated patient discomfort objectively with a newly developed portable analyzer of salivary amylase activity.

The researchers performed this study double-blind, and assignments were not disclosed to patients or to endoscopists.

Scores for acceptance for future colonoscopy, pain, abdominal fullness, and scope manipulation were significantly lower in the glucagon group.

The team of doctors examined that salivary amylase activity, determined at the time the scope was inserted to the cecum, was significantly lower in the glucagon group, and cecal intubation time was significantly shorter in the glucagon group.

Observation time and polyp detection rate were not significantly different between the groups.

Dr Tamai's team concluded, "These results indicate that intravenous administration of glucagon can reduce patient discomfort and improve scope intubation during screening colonoscopy."

Eur J Gastroenterol Hepatol 2013: 25(5): 575-579
02 May 2013

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